UK Sikhs unhappy over govt guidelines for places of worship

5 months ago 30
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AMRITASAR: UK based

Sikh

body

Sikh Federation

has claimed that as many as 100 gurdwaras and Sikh organisations in all nine regions of England and in nearly 50 towns and cities have dismissed government guidance for places of worship relating to England on the plea that the guidance fails to understand Sikh religious practices and contains insensitive and offensive material.
While talking to TOI on Tuesday, principal advisor to Sikh Federation,

Dabinderjit Singh

said that within 48 hours of the establishment of the ‘Government’s Places of Worship Taskforce’, gurdwaras unanimously rejected the Taskforce as the Sikh representative appointed by the government was allegedly inappropriate.
He said their concerns about the guidelines included not allowing the kirtan, food or drinks in the

gurdwara

's, use of alcohol based hand sanitizers, keeping the gurdwara’s closed during normal services, not allowing the persons above 70 years of age to visit gurdwara’s , discouraging sangat to donate cash etc.
“It is criminal to allow the government to issue guidance to gurdwaras that is offensive, interferes with Sikh religious practices and contains fundamental errors” said he.
Notably a

National Gurdwara Advisory Group

(NGAG) comprising of 11 gurdwaras was set up to deal with the impact of Covid-19 on gurdwaras which were opened in UK on June 13.
“Government should never have appointed someone who is not a practicing Sikh and has never been involved in the management or running of a gurdwara” he resented
He further claimed that the gurdwaras and Sikh organisations were incensed that those attending meetings with government over the last one month had advised and agreed government guidelines that compromise Sikh religious practices.
“This has resulted in inaccurate and in some cases inappropriate advice to sangat on essential Sikh religious practices in gurdwaras” he said. Eom

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