BY INDIRA PRAHST
THIS year’s Khalsa Day Parade in Surrey organized by Dasmesh Darbar Gurdwara was a resounding success as around 240,000 people from all walks of life joined in the celebration. The rain did not extinguish the vibrant spirit as people enjoyed food, family, community, the floats and the birth of the Khalsa.
I asked Moninder Singh, spokesperson for Dasmesh Darbar Gurdwara, what resonated for him. He said he was thinking about the words of Guru Gobind Singh in connection with the birth of the Khalsa, noting: “It is upholding righteousness, truth and freedom that we are looking for today. For every Sikh, every human being, that should resonate in their heart until they are free, all people and humanity are free, and to keep moving forward in the struggle.”
THIS year’s procession featured 23 floats representing local Sikh schools, community groups, humanitarian organizations as well as the most important float in the procession that carries the Guru Granth Sahib (Sikh Holy Scripture), according to a statement by the organizers.
“We are grateful to the Sikh sangat and Surrey community who allow us to serve them through coordinating this event. It is inspiring to see this event evolve into a message for peace and tolerance while representing the rights of all peoples in the pursuit of justice and self-determination” said Moninder Singh.
This year’s event was particularly significant as it marked the 30th anniversary of the Indian Army’s attack on the Golden Temple in Amritsar, Punjab.
As always, the festivities were volunteer-driven and exemplify the pride and enthusiasm of the Sikh community in sharing their rich culture and history with the entire city. Dashmesh Darbar Gurdwara thanked all attendees for their participation and said they looked forward to celebrating again next year.