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Sikh Gurdwaras (Amendment) Act, 2023

  • Published
    20th Jun, 2023

The Punjab Cabinet has approved to amend the Sikh Gurdwaras Act, 1925, and to insert Section 125 A in the Act thereby making it incumbent on the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) to ensure free-to-air live telecast of the holy Gurbani from Sri Harmandir Sahib.

  • ‘Gurbani’ is Sikh term, very commonly used by Sikhs to refer to various compositions by the Sikh Gurus and other writers of Guru Granth Sahib.

Key- Highlights
  • The Amendment is going to pave the way for eliminating the undue control of ‘Modern Day Masands’ over the free-to-air telecast of the sacred ‘Gurbani’.
  • Section 125-A will be inserted for the live telecast of Gurbani free of cost
  • The Act stipulates that it will be the duty of the SGPC Board to propagate the teachings of the Gurus by making uninterrupted (without any on screen running advertisements/ commercials/distortion) live feed (audio or audio as well as video) of Gurbani available free of cost to all media houses, outlets, platforms, channels, whoever wishes to broadcast it.

Sikh Gurdwaras Act, 1925:

  • Sikh Gurdwara Act is a legislation passed in India unanimously by the Punjab legislative council in July 1925 to end a controversy within the Sikh community that had embroiled it with the British government and threatened the tranquillity of the Punjab. 
  • The controversy had emerged over a reforming movement, organized as the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee that wished to remove from the Sikh gurdwaras (temples) hereditary mahants (guardians), who in some cases had diverted temple revenues to private use.

Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee:

  • The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee is an organization in India responsible for the management of Gurdwaras.
  • They administer the Sikh places of worship in states of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh and the union territory of Chandigarh. 
  • SGPC also administers Darbar Sahib in Amritsar
  • The SGPC is governed by the president of SGPC.
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