By: Arimita Padam and Simrit Kukreja
On May 24, 2020, the New England Sikh Study Circle’s (NESSC) Khalsa School and Nishkam TV worked together to present the Shaheedi Gurpurab of Guru Arjan Dev Ji – the anniversary of Guru Arjan Dev Ji’s martyrdom. Guru Arjan Dev ji was the first of the two Gurus martyred in the Sikh faith and the fifth of the ten total Sikh Gurus. He compiled the first official edition of the Sikh scripture called the Adi Granth, which later expanded into the Guru Granth Sahib Ji.
Our entire Sikh community has not been able to gather together in the Westborough Gurdwara due to the ongoing pandemic. So a virtual Shaheedi Gurpurab Diwan was held to commemorate the martyrdom of Guru Arjan Devji.
The program started out with TA Harneet Kaur introducing all of the other TA’s present, as well as the principal of Khalsa School Harinder Soin, who welcomed everyone and talked about the ongoing Khalsa School transitioning into the next part of the Diwan. Kindergarten and Gurmukhi classes spoke about Guru Arjan Dev Ji’s life, travels, and martyrdom. Sikh History Level 2 kids also emphasized the importance of standing up to cruelty.
Gurmukhi level 7 kids explained the hidden story of Baba Deep Singh in a painting through the words of a poem by Doctor Hari Singh. Sikh History level 1 kid presented posters they made about Guru Arjan Dev Ji, and level 6 kids led discussions about Guru Arjan Dev Ji. In the next part, Sumeet Singh and Manraaj Singh talked about two paintings in the Gurdwara Sahib depicting Operation Blue Star. The following two parts included kids playing tabla variations, and Gurmukhi level 8 kids talking about three people – Kanhaiya Singh, Garja Singh, Bota Singh – shown in paintings. TA Raunaq Singh then spoke about the importance of how the kids had prepared kirtan and shabad. Sikh History level 7 kids then told about Guru Arjan Dev Ji and people who played a role in his martyrdom. Harneet Kaur then thanked all the TA’s for helping out. It was a valuable, informative, and unique celebration that highlighted the necessity to adapt to the current situation.