Posted by: Singh Is King | Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Banjara Sikhs offer prayers at Golden Temple

aplus3Amritsar, Punjab: A 56-member delegation of Banjara Sikhs, including Sikligars and Lobanas of Maharashtra and Gujarat, on a two-day visit to the city, offered prayers at the Golden Temple here yesterday.

The tour programme was organised by the trust for the welfare of Banjaras and other weaker sections.

While talking to The Tribune, trust secretary Mohinder Singh said a large section of the Banjaras came into Sikh fold during the travels of Guru Nanak Dev and during the time of Guru Hargobind and Guru Gobind Singh.

However, they lost touch with the faith as they were classified as criminal tribes which resulted in their mass migration to the forests during the British regime. He said for centuries they remained neglected and after Independence, the government denotified the Banjaras class as nomadic tribes. Unfortunately, the constitutional benefits were yet to be restored to them. He said the trust had made an endeavour to conduct the pilgrimage of Sikh shrines in North India to make them aware of Punjab’s rich heritage and culture.

The group arrived here last night and was put up in the Golden Temple complex, where they interacted with members of the SGPC. Siropas were offered to them.

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