BY PRITAM SINGH
Meet the Sikh Who Served Chai, Samosa to Protesting Jamia Students




This young Sikh's solidarity with students in Delhi protesting against the discriminatory Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) is hugely praiseworthy and meaningful from multiple dimensions. He travelled hundreds of miles from Bathinda district of Punjab only to show his solidarity and still, he is so modest about his contribution.

Secondly, he represents the best traditions of Sikhism as his journey is reminding the Sikhs all over the world (this video has been already watched by over 350,000 viewers) that their ninth guru Guru Tegh Bahadur (1621-1675) had travelled to Delhi from Anandpur Sahib in Punjab in 1675 along with his three associates to defend the religious human rights of Kashmiri Brahmins who had come to seek his support when their rights were being violated by the then Moghul emperor.

The Guru's decision to support the Kashmiri Brahmins set new standards in world history in defence of human rights as the Guru was aware that the Kashmiri Brahmins were his ideological opponents due to Sikhism being opposed to the Brahmanical varnashram (hierarchical caste system) but he still decided to support them as his moral religious duty. For that unflinching support to the right of Kashmiri Brahmins to practice their faith, the Guru was martyred along with his three associates on 11th November 1675 and the place where he was beheaded, there is a magnificent gurdwara Sheesh Ganj in the memory of that supreme sacrifice.

The Amnesty International honoured Guru Tegh Bahadur as one of the five human rights heroes in the seventeenth century along with John Lilburne (1617-57), John Locke (1632-1704), William Pen (1644-1718) and Voltaire (1694-1778).

This young Sikh Jabarjang Singh by saying that he would give his life to defend the struggling students is a reminder of that glorious tradition in Sikhism. His moral standpoint has won so overwhelming support that Akali Dal, an ally of BJP, has been forced to do a U-turn and is now demanding that the exclusion of Muslims be removed from CAA. This shows the power of a correct moral action by a single individual.

Jabarjang's argument articulated in simple language is theoretically much richer than those who criticise CAA purely on the poverty-stricken grounds that it violates the Indian constitution and not recognising that thousands of monstrosities have been committed in India that are perfectly compatible with the Indian constitution. Jabarjang Singh's argument is the universalist/moral argument transcending the limitations of constitutionalism that anyone persecuted anywhere and seeking refuge and asylum should be considered without any consideration of the identity of the refugee/asylum seeker.
 

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