Dedicated to the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the cultural wing of India’s Ministry of External Affairs, Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) organised visit to 3 Sikh Takhts and an International Seminar on the teachings of the founder of Sikhism and their contribution in universal wellbeing from 5 to 11 Nov. at Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra in Chanakyapuri, New Delhi.
The seminar was inaugurated by ICCR president and Rajya Sabha MP Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, Padma Shri Sant Balbir Singh Seechewal and ICCR Director General Akhilesh Mishra. Member of the National Commission for Minorities Manjit Singh Rai, Lt General PJS Pannu, President of Rashtriya Sikh Sangat Mr GS Gill, Kamal Soi, Member of the National Road Safety Council, Sukhpreet Kaur , Dr Surjit Kaur Jolly and Namrata Kumar, Deputy Director ICCRE were among the moderators and speakers at the seminar.”
About 40 international Sikh youth and reps from 12 countries that included the UK, Netherlands, Italy, USA, Canada, Malaysia, Thailand, Australia, Netherlands, South Africa, Singapore and 20 youth from India participated in the seminar that focused on teachings of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, spiritual traditions in Sikhism, their historic role, contributions, sacrifices and service for the nation, global peace and all humanity,” said Vinay Sahashrabuddhe, the President of ICCR.‘’
After the seminar, the delegates visited the Rashtrapati Bhawan and met with the President of India Ram Nath Kovind and then completed yatra (visit) to three Sikh Takhts, namely Patna Sahib in Patna (Bihar), Golden Temple in Amritsar (Punjab) and Hazur Saheb in Nanded (Maharashtra). The closing session of semanr was held in New Delhi and was led by Mr Hardeep Singh Puri, Minster in Indian Govt. who held engaging discussions with the delegates.’’ A ICCR release said.
Cllr Charan Kanwal Singh Sekhon, Chairman of SEVA Trust UK, Cllr Gurjit Kaur Bains, Connect with Yours Roots Coordinator Vinny Singh Khera and CEO of Kent Equality Cohesion Council Gurvinder Sandher were among the UK delegates at this seminar.
On return to London, the UK reps paid respect at Gurdwara Singh Sabha Park Ave, Southall.
Cllr Charan Sekhon who heads SEVA Trust UK, an international NGO working in the UK and India on Education, Health and Environment said ‘It was a great initiative by the Indian Government and the High Commission of India, London to enable all of us to be part of this spiritual and learning experience through a shared global platform. All reps are really active in their own countries through voluntary, community activities and Seva and some of the participants never visited India before. It was a great opportunity for all of us to learn about Guru Ji’s messages, the Sikh history, visit Takhats and Gurdwaras. We will be sharing our journey and experiences with the wider groups and communities we all work with. Most touching memory for me was to take part in the night and the early morning Seva and prayers at all the Takhts and I saw so many tears of love and joy among our group members.’’ said Mr Sekhon