A major Sikh event was organised in Cardiff to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the birth of Sikh Guru Gobind Singh. Several dignitaries from Wales were in attendance of the 350th Pratash Utsav event at the Sikh Gurdwara on Pearl Street, Cardiff, including the head of the Sikh Council of Wales Gurmit Singh Randhawa MBE, the Indian Honorary, General Raj Aggarwal OBE DL and Mr D.P. Singh from the Indian High Commission.
Local dignitaries included HM Lord -Lieutenant Morfudd Meredith, Deputy Lord Mayor Daniel De’Ath, and Matt Jukes the Chief Constable of South Wales. The event started at 10.30am and children from various Sikh temples in Wales performed Kirtan (chanting), Kavita (Hindi poetry) and Sakhi (recounting of events in Sikh history). There was also a Dastar (turban) tying competition for the children.
Over 500 people attended the free event which was open to the public, and there was a speech by Raj Aggarwal and the Anand Sahib prayer read by Bhai Satbir Singh Ji followed by a Jatha (parade), and a well-attended meal laid on after the ceremony. Gurmit Singh Randhawa, Chairman of the Sikh Council of Wales said: “The message on the day was simple, it was one of the communities coming together and celebrating the birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the common and most respected Guru who stood for the poor and down trodden people, while upholding the principles of justice, equality and freedom for all.”
Indian diplomat Raj Aggarwal said: “It was a beautiful ceremony and celebration of the Sikh tradition. The Sikh community in Wales are hardworking, prosperous and are an amazing asset to the country. “This was a huge anniversary for all Sikhs in Wales, and it was especially fantastic that it is open up to people of all religious faiths to come and share such a joyous occasion and for all communities in Wales to come together to enjoy our wonderfully diverse and inclusive society.”
He also added: “There have been huge celebrations organised all over the world for the 350th Pratash Utsav and all of India and the world will share with the joyous celebrations of this amazing landmark.”