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Government of India
Prime Minister's Office
09-November-2019 16:10 IST
English rendering of PM’s address at Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur, Punjab

वाहे गुरू जी का खालसा,

वाहे गुरू जी की फतेह।

 

Friends, today I am feeling blessed by coming to this holy land. It is my privilege that I am dedicating the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor to the country today. Right now I am having the same feeling that you have at the time of 'Kar Sewa’. I congratulate all of you, the entire country, and the Sikh brothers and sisters around the world.

Today, the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee has also conferred on me the 'Kaumi Seva Award'. This award, this honour, this pride is the offering of the glory, sacrifice and penance of our great saint tradition. I dedicate this award, this honour to the feet of Guru Nanak Devji.

Today, at the feet of Guru Nanak Sahib from this holy land, in front of Guru Granth Sahib, I humbly pray that my inner sense of service should increase day by day and his blessings remain on me like this.

Friends,

The opening of the Integrated Check Post- Kartarpur Sahib Corridor before Guru Nanak Devji's 550th Prakash Utsav, has doubled the happiness for all of us. This time on Kartik Purnima, Dev-Diwali will illuminate more and bless us.

Brothers and sisters,

After the construction of this corridor, darshan of Gurdwara Darbar Sahib will become easy. I thank the Punjab Government, the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, and all the workers who built this corridor of our side in due time.

I also thank the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Mr. Imran Khan Niazi, for understanding, respecting and acting on India's sentiments regarding the Kartarpur Corridor. I also thank the labour friends of Pakistan who have helped in completing the corridor on their side so fast.

Friends,

Guru Nanak Devji is not only the heritage of Sikhism and India, but also an inspiration for the entire humanity. Guru Nanak Dev is an idea and the basis of life besides being a teacher. Our traditions, culture, values, our upbringing, our mindset, our thoughts, reasoning and speech, everything has been shaped only by virtuous souls like Guru Nanak Devji. When Guru Nanak Dev had set off on a journey from Sultanpur Lodhi, who knew that he was going to change the era! His 'Udasiyan', his travels, communication and coordination are perfect examples of social change.

The purpose of his visits was stated by Guru Nanak Devji himself-

बाबे आखिआ, नाथ जी, सचु चंद्रमा कूडु अंधारा !!

कूडु अमावसि बरतिआ, हउं भालण चढिया संसारा

Friends,

He had set out on the journey of pulling our country, our society out of the evil, injustice and wrongdoings that had crept in. He devoted his life in order to save and awakening the consciousness of India in that difficult period of slavery.

Friends,

On the one hand, Guru Nanak Devji showed the path of unity, brotherhood and harmony to the society through social philosophy; on the other hand, he presented to the society an economic system which is based on truth, honesty and self-respect. He has taught us that the development achieved through truth and honesty, always leads to the path of progress and prosperity. He has taught that money will keep coming and going, but true values remain forever. He has taught us that prosperity is sustainable if we work steadfastly on our values.

Brothers and sisters,

Kartarpur is not just the work place of Guru Nanak Devji. Guru Nanak Devji’s sweat is mixed in every part of Kartarpur. His voice is reverberating in Kartarpur's air. By running the plough on the land of Kartarpur, he had presented the example of his first rule - 'Kirt Karo'; on this land, he showed the method of 'Naam Japo' and it is on this land that he had started the ritual of sharing and eating the crops grown with hard work. He gave the mantra of 'Wand Chhako '.

Friends,

Whatever we will be doing for this holy place will not be enough. This corridor, Integrated Check Post will serve thousands of devotees every day, taking them closer to the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib. It is said that words always remain in the atmosphere in the form of energy. The energy of Gurbani received from Kartapur will not only bless our Sikh brothers and sisters, but also every Indian.

Friends,

You all know very well that Guru Nanak Devji had two very close followers - Bhai Lalo and Bhai Mardana. After choosing these promising people, Nanak Devji gave us a message that there is no difference between rich and the poor and everyone is equal. He has taught us that when we all work together without any discrimination, progress is assured.

Brothers and sisters,

Guru Nanak's philosophy was not limited to mankind alone. It was in Kartarpur that he told us about the importance of nature. He said-

पवणु गुरू, पाणी पिता, माता धरति महतु।

That is, consider air as a guru, give water as much importance as a father and earth as a mother. Today, when we talk of exploitation of nature, environment, and pollution, then this mwssage of Guru becomes the basis of our path ahead.

Friends,

Just imagine! How far-sighted our Guru was that at a time when there was plenty of water in Punjab (Panch Aab) through which 5 rivers flowed, Gurudev had expressed his concern about the water. He said-

पहलां पानी जिओ है, जित हरिया सभ कोय।

That is, water should always be given priority because only water gives life to the whole creation. Just think about this vision hundreds of years ago, and this vision on the future. Today, even though we forget to prioritize water, and become careless about nature and environment, but the Guru's voice is repeatedly telling us to look back and always remember the things that this earth has given us, and our Gurus have given us.

Friends,

For the last five years, we are trying to ensure that whatever our rich past has given India should be preserved and taken to the whole world. For the last one year, the celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev's 550th Prakash Parv are going on. They are a part of this idea. Under this, the High Commissions and Embassies of India are organizing special programmes and seminars all over the world. Guru Nanak Devji’s commemorative coins and stamps have also been issued in his memory.

Friends,

Guru Nanak Dev's teachings have been propagated in the country and abroad through events such as Kirtan, Katha, Prabhatferi and Langar. Earlier, Guru Gobind Singh Ji's 350th Prakashotsava was also celebrated with grandeur all over the world. I had the privilege of going to the grand event in Patna itself. A commemorative coin and postage stamp of Rs 350 were also released on that special occasion. To mark this occasion, a modern 750-bed hospital in Jamnagar, Gujarat has been built in his name so that the memory of Guru Gobind Singh and his message remain immortal.

Brothers and sisters,

Gurbani is being translated into different languages ​​of the world so that the new generation of the world can also become familiar with the teachings of Guru Nanak. So I would also like to express my gratitude to UNESCO here, for accepting the request of the Central Government. UNESCO is also helping to translate the works of Guru Nanak Dev ji into different languages.

Friends,

To encourage research related to Guru Nanak Dev and Khalsa Panth, Chairs have been established in a UK university. A similar effort is underway in Canada. Similarly, it has also been decided to establish Inter-faith University in Amritsar, so that respect for harmony and diversity can be further encouraged.

 

Brothers and sisters,

Serious efforts are being made so that the modern generation can easily connect with the heritage as soon as they step into the important places associated with our gurus. It is here in Sultanpur Lodhi that you can witness these efforts. The work of making Sultanpur Lodhi a heritage town is underway. Be it the heritage complex, museum or the auditorium, many such works have either been completed or are going to be completed soon. From the railway station here to other areas of the city, we should see the legacy of Guru Nanak Devji. A special train passing through all the places associated with Guru Nanak Devji is also being run five days a week so that the devotees will not have any problem in commuting.

Brothers and sisters,

The central government has also tried to strengthen connectivity between important places for the Sikhs located across the country. Rail and air connectivity has been emphasized between Shri Akal Takht, Damdama Sahib, Keshgarh Sahib, Patna Sahib and Hazur Sahib. Special flights between Amritsar and Nanded have also been started. Similarly, the message of 'Ik Onkar' has been written on the flight of Air India from Amritsar to London.

Friends,

The central government has taken another important decision, which has benefited many Sikh families settled around the world. For many years some people used to face problems when they came to India. That problem has now been removed. With this step, many families will now be able to apply for visas and OCI cards. They will be able to easily meet their relatives here in India and will also be able to do Ardaas by visiting the places of the Gurus here.

Brothers and sisters,

The Sikh community has also benefitted directly from two more decisions of the Central Government. With the removal of article 370, Sikh families in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh will now get the same rights that they get in the rest of India. Till now there were thousands of families who were deprived of many rights. Similarly, our Sikh brothers and sisters will also get a huge benefit from the Citizenship Amendment Bill. They will be able to get citizenship of India easily.

Friends,

From Guru Nanak Devji to Guru Gobind Singh Ji, every Guru Sahib has made relentless efforts, has made many sacrifices for the unity, protection and security of India. This tradition has been played by the Sikh Sathis with full vigour in the freedom struggle and the defence of independent India. The government has also taken several meaningful steps to honour the dedication of those who sacrificed their lives for the country. This year marks 100 years of Jallianwala Bagh massacre. The memorial associated with it is being modernized. Special attention is also being given by the government to the schools, skills and self-employment of Sikh youth. In the last 5 years, about 27 lakh Sikh students have been given different scholarships.

Brothers and sisters,

Our guru tradition, saint tradition, sage tradition has suggested ways to deal with challenges in different periods. Paths shown by them are as meaningful today as they used to be then. There has been a request by every saint, every guru for national unity and national consciousness. Be it superstition, society's evils, caste differences, our saints and gurus have strongly raised their voices against it.

Friends, Guru Nanak used to say-

“विच दुनिया सेवि कमाइये, तदरगिह बेसन पाइए”।

That is, it is only by adopting the path of service in the world that life turns successful. Let us take a pledge on this important and sacred platform that we will make Guru Nanak's words a part of our lives. We will make every effort to create harmony within the society. We will be cautious of the forces that harm India. We will be alert. We will stay away from the habits like drugs that hollows out the society and will also keep the future generations away from the same. Keeping synergy with the environment will empower the path of development. This inspiration of Guru Nanak is relevant for the welfare of humanity and for world peace even today.

नानक नाम चढ़दी कला, तेरे भाणे सरबत दा भला !!!

Friends,

Once again I congratulate all of you, the entire country, and the Sikh friends spread all over the world for the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor and my best wishes on the 550th Prakashotsav of Guru Nanak Devji. Standing in front of Guru Granth Sahib, I got the opportunity to participate in this sacred work, I consider myself blessed for the same and I bow to all of you-

सतनाम श्री वाहेगुरु !

सतनाम श्री वाहेगुरु !

सतनाम श्री वाहेगुरु !

 

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VRRK/KP/IG/MG/AK