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"The first step in liquidating a people is to erase its memory. Destroy its books, its culture, its history, Then have somebody write new books, manufacture a new culture, invent a new history. Before long the nation will begin to forget what it is and what it was. The world around it will forget even faster……The struggle of man against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting." -Milan Kundera
Amritsar Sahib, Punjab (KP) - Sikh organizations worldwide stand united and resolute in protest against the blatant and systematic distortion of Sikh history in elementary and high school history textbooks by the RSS and other Hindu extremist groups. Sikhs along with other minority communities including Christians, Muslims and Jains have become victims of a massive government organized campaign to spread false and distorted information about these minority communities in an attempt to homogenize them into the construct of one religion, one language, one land of Hindus: Hindu, Hindi, Hindustan.
Despite the protests and peaceful pleas from the Sikh community and various other minority groups, the government continues to allow and in fact supports the publishing of this false information about these religious groups.
Just recently the National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) published a history on 'Medieval India' to be used in the high school curriculum. In this, Professor Satish Chandra of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi wrote that Guru Tegh Bahadar Ji was a 'looter and a rapist' and that Guru Sahib became a martyr not in the name of the freedom to practice religion but because Chandra claims Guru Sahib 'was a criminal.' When the Sikh minority expressed their grievances with this gross historical fallacy, Chandra defended his work by saying that he used a 'credible Persian source' albeit that this source was written over a century after Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji's Shaheedi. When questioned about the erroneous points that he presented in the text he said that he wanted to provide a 'constructive interpretation of tradition.'
Congress Party leader Sonia Gandhi expressed support for Chandra's work despite protests from the Sikh minority. The book is full of numerous other historical fallacies about the Sikh Guru Sahibans with false information saying that Guru Nanak Sahib 'renounced the world', that Guru Gobind Singh Ji was a 'worshipper of Hindu Goddess Chandi' and that Sikhi is 'a part of the Hindu movement.
'Another history textbook titled 'History of Punjab Part II' which is full of historical fallacies and objectionable material about the Sikh Guru Sahibans is now in wide distribution and being implemented in Punjab school curricula. The book makes multiple flagrant distortions of Sikh history calling Baba Budha Ji 'a thief,' and portraying Guru Hargobind Sahib as a person of immoral character. Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji is termed as an 'oppressor' while Guru Gobind Singh Ji is presented as a weak hearted person and a worshipper of the Hindu Goddess Durga. Numerous other perversions of history are presented in this book which is being used in the syllabi throughout Punjab and in several other states.
The Sarbat Khalsa Mission issued a referendum calling for a committee to be established to ensure that such historical distortions are not permitted in the future. They also stated that only accurate and approved books with proper scholastic research should be implented into the curricula. They also called for action against Lahore Book Shop, Lajput Rai Market, Ludhiana, the book publishers and made a call to all Sikhs worldwide to boycott their company and to take strict actions against the owners of the publishing firm.
A glimpse of material contained in the books:
Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji And Bhai Bidhi Chand
A Sikh of the Guru was bringing a Turkish horse to Amritsar as a gift for the guru. The officials of the king in Lahore intercepted the Sikh and took the horse into their possession. The officials then presented the horse to the king. Upon seeing the beauty of the horse, the king ordered that the horse be sent to his stables and a fair price be given to the owner of the horse. When the guru came to hear of this incident, he became extremely angered, as he was not able to do anything else. Due to some unknown circumstances, this horse became crippled. The king then proceeded to gift this horse to the kazi of Lahore. The kazi sought treatment of the horse, after which the horse became well once again. Guru decided that he would attempt to purchase this horse from the kazi for 10 thousand rupees. He took possession of the horse from the kazi in Lahore to Amritsar without paying the price. In the meantime, a Sikh of the guru captured a falcon of the king. Also, a woman by the name of Kaulan who was staying in the haveli of the kazi fled with the same Sikh who had captured the falcon of the King. The woman Kaulan was in love with the guru therefore the Sikh helped her flee from the kazi.
Another Quarrel Between The Guru And The King
While living in the jungles, Guru Hargobind Ji brought many people into the Sikh fold. Of the individuals who had become Sikhs there was one who was a famous thief known as Buddha. This thief later on became known as Baba Buddha. The title of Baba was bestowed upon Buddha by the Sikhs of that time. This person by the name of Buddha stole two of the kings most prized horses from the king's stables and presented them to the guru. This incident led the king to become even more angered as he was already quite angered by the deeds of the guru. The king sent a large force of soldiers from Lahore under the command of Kamar Begh and Lal Begh to Amritsar. The army while advancing rapidly crossed the Satluj River.
The Gurus Return To Punjab
Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji returned to Anandpur from Patna. Upon returning, he purchased some land for 500 rupees from Devi Madho the king of Kehloor. On this land, he founded the city of Makhowal, which even to this day exists near the bank of the river Satluj near Kartarpur. The city of Kartarpur was one resting place of Guru Hargobind Ji, which the Sikhs consider as a holy place. After living as an Udhasi in Bengal and then returning to Punjab, it seems as if the Guru (Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji) began a criminal life of killing and looting. He had once again resumed his criminal activities, which he had suspended whilst living as an Udhasi in Bengal. The land between the Satluj River and Jhansi had been completely plundered by Guru Tegh Bahadur.
The Gurus Rebellious Activities
The guru had also joined with Adam Haffaz and when this Muslim began looting and killing fellow Muslims the Guru also followed his lead and began killing his fellow Hindus. Places of worship had become the prime target of the Guru and Haffaz. From the villages they had recruited many armed followers who were paid handsome salaries for their assistance in the lootings and killings. Those that were rebelling against the Mughal Empire were also inducted into the criminal gang of the guru.
The Order Of The Guru
The Sikhs who Guru Gobind Singh had, given the name Khalsa, were ordered to arm themselves, keep their weapons with them at all times, keep knotted and long hairs*, wear blue clothing, never wear red clothes, and never used tobacco. All the restrictions, which had been placed on eating and drinking, were abolished.
*The guru was the follower of the goddess Durga who was the goddess of power. The devi had permitted the guru to open his hair and unsheathe his sword. The guru had vowed to keep his hair uncut in the remembrance of the goddess Durga, he then also gave this command to his Sikhs.
Teachings For His Son GobindGuru
Tegh Bahadur said to his son Gobind "now I am going to become a martyr, son make sure my body is not left to be eaten by crows and dogs." Afterwards he instructed his son to take revenge for his soon to come death and appointed him as his successor. He picked his son up in his arms, kissed him on the forehead, and proceeded to leave for Delhi. These were times when the King had jailed hundreds of Brahmins and had hoped that if Guru Tegh Bahadur would become Muslim, then the rest of the Hindus in jails and otherwise would follow his lead.
The King Asks For A Miracle To Be Performed
The king had a religious debate with Guru Tegh Bahadur numerous times and said that if you are the real Guru then show some miracle otherwise adopt the Islamic faith. When the Guru said no to both options given by the king he was sent to prison. The guru has asked numerous times to become a Muslim but he declined their request every time. For this disobedience, they began to torture the guru. Not being able to take this torture any longer, the Guru declared that he will show a miracle and will provide proof that his path is true.
A Unique Scheme
He was presented before the King, on this occasion all the Kings employees were present to witness the miracle. Addressing the gathering the Guru Ji said that a man's religion is to remember God but since the King has ordered him to show some miracle he shall obey these orders. Then Guru Ji proceeded to write some words on a piece of paper thaveeth which he then tied around his neck. He then exclaimed that no sword could cut his neck due to what he had written on that paper. Now the executioner was called so that this miracle may be tested. When the executioner swung his sword and hit the Gurus neck, the guru's head separated from his body and landed on the ground. Seeing this onlookers were surprised. Then the papers was taken from the guru neck and read, the paper had the following written on it, "ਸਿਰ ਦੀਆ ਸਰ ਨ ਦੀਆ" ** meaning that he had given his head but not revealed his secret. The guru did not longer physically exist but his holy deed stayed forever. All were surprised to see this incident take place; the king himself became saddened and in anger ordered all to leave. Even though, this is the tale that the lovers of miracles have narrated; it is most likely that the guru was declared a rebel and executed.
(** Eds. Note: The above is a serious distortion of Gurbani, the actual verse is : ਸੀਸ ਦੀਆ ਪਰ ਸਿਰਰੁ ਨ ਦੀਆ ॥) - 
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