Sikh group wants Anandpur Sahib declared plastic free

March 11th, 2011 - 2:34 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, March 11 (IANS) An international Sikh group has appealed to the Punjab government to declare Anandpur Sahib as plastic free before the March 14 opening of the three-day Holla Mohalla festival in the pilgrim town.

EcoSikh has also appealed to Giani Tarlochan Singh, Jathedar of Takhat Keshgarh, to persuade authorities and the over one million pilgrims coming to Anandpur Sahib to not use plastic bags and plastic products and to ban these items from this sacred Sikh site.

“Anandpur Sahib and Kiratpur Sahib should be preserved as our natural heritage and their original and tranquil atmosphere should be protected for coming generations,” Dr. Rajwant Singh, convener of EcoSikh in Washington, said,

“This can only happen if this appeal and persuasion comes from the Takht authority in combination with SGPC,” he said noting March 14 is being celebrated as Sikh Environment Day by Sikhs all over the world.

The Holla Mohalla festival celebrates Gurgaddi (enthronement day) Diwas of Guru Har Rai, the 7th Guru of the Sikhs who had special sensitivity towards nature preservation and the wellbeing of animals.

Asking Punjab Government to declare March 14 as Environment Day in honor of Guru Har Rai, EcoSikh said: “He is an unparalleled personality of Punjab who specifically raised the consciousness of humans to preserve nature and environment.”

EcoSikh also appealed to all deras to serve langar in biodegradable products such as pattal, paper or kasore and not use plastic.

They should also clean the area after the langar just as enthusiastically as they serve the langar, it said describing cleaning and preserving nature as also a great sewa for many generations to come.

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in)

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