YOU ARE A COWARD SIKH
A couple of years ago, some Sikh parents in
Toronto were charged with child abuse, based on
the evidence given by their children.
It is sad that a twenty-minute documentary was
shown on television depicting the 'harsh' and
'dictatorial' behavior of the parents towards their
grown up children.
The Sikhs felt bad, some even angry and raised
objections against presenting this negative image
of them by the media.
The community felt that the parents did no wrong
because it was their duty to save their children
from going on the wrong path.
Everybody was very upset to observe the
irresponsible behavior of our youth and the
'wrong' reaction of their parents.
Some students missed their classes to
participate in daytime drink-and-dance
The parents hit the children for ignoring
their studies and failing their examinations.
Some well-behaved senior students of
Toronto were called them to an informal
meeting to discuss the issue with them.
I wanted them to advise the rebellious youth
that their primary responsibility is to study.
Further, they should convince their junior
friends to listen to their parents and be
respectful to them.
To the responsible youth gathered in a friends
house, I proposed, "Let us try to understand where
we have failed to let that sad incidence happen,
and what we can do to improve the image of our
Unexpectedly, everyone started blaming me as if I
was the real culprit responsible for the problem.
It appeared as if the youth had summoned me to
be thrashed by them for my failures.
"Uncle, you are a coward teacher.
You tell us to respect the Sikh tenets.
Why do you not dare to tell the same thing
to the parents and the adults?
Are you scared to face them?
Are you a Sikh?
A Sikh is not scared to tell the truth?..."
The tables having been turned on me, I became
Everyone had something to say to me as if they
had planned to accuse me, or maybe, to awaken
me to my duty, whichever way one may think.
They even named some responsible Sikhs,
members of the gurdwara management, and even
some preachers, who did not care to respect Sikh
Adults are the role model
This seemed to go on ad infinitum.
The break came when one youth said, "Why
blame youth? Adults are the role model for us.
If these things are good for them, they cannot be
bad for us.
If you are a fearless Sikh, you should advise the
You did not dare to tell this even once to them."
parents practice it.
Shooting of these allegations ended when
one of them said, "It is no use telling us to
follow the Sikh Reht, to avoid alcohol and
not to dance at parties, unless you make our
parents practice it.
As long as the parents do not listen to you,
the youth will not care to listen to you."
Mr. A. Singh got drunk at the party, his
turban fell off, and his hair were spread;
even Mr. B. Singh was found drinking.
Last Sunday, Mr. C and Mrs. C. celebrated
the silver jubilee of their wedding.
Some Sikhs drank too much, they fought
among themselves and were arrested by the
"The other day, the youth slapped me, of
course, not with their hands, but with their
words.... Unless the parents themselves observe
the Sikh Reht, how can they expect the youth to
When we enter the gurdwara hall, all of us bow
to the Guru Granth Sahib.
It means we respect Gurbani and promise to
obey its directions. Gurbani says that a Sikh
should not drink.
To save our children, whom we love so
much, I request all Sikhs to throw away the
bottle, and start reciting Nitnem from today