The 21st Century Misals are our Achilles Heel

We have splintered into smithereens of thousands of 21st century Misals.

There is a recent Indian serial that brings to life Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s life. For anyone South of Punjab, East, West it is one of the new gems that magnificently brings to life the chaos that Ranjit Singh was born into. Afghani tyrants on one side, British on another, and the despicable treachery amongst the sikh Misals. Ranjit Singh is potrayed as a great hero of Hindustan although one could argue technically he was a great hero of the Sikh empire.

The fact that people have speculated that this is a Hindutva backed serial, RSS backed under its Hindu assimilation and chauvinistic agenda, or seen entirely through the lens of modern day India is obvious. But what is astounding is to visualise what was once the Sikh Raj and the utter destructive ability of the Misals. I found it moving to see the Nishaan Sahib against such a princely country and yet the jealousies and destruction of the Misals of their rivals is on a road to hell.

Even though the serialisation, fictional elements and the sponsors’ agenda will become apparent, I was still utterly, hand on heart, moved at how Ranjit Singh was born into this chaos and for someone new to this history the visualisation of scenes is powerful.

How does the Sikh country ever come to be?

I am so sure, so many decades after the Sikh genocide and lack of justice for the people and the rise in Indian nationalism and genocidal denial in India, that we do not just face external enemies to our sanctity, security and sanity in our challenge to succeed and survive.

We have splintered into smithereens of thousands of 21st century Misals. Ask any Sikh activist who has been trampled or buried alive; ask any poor Sikh who waits and waits for someone, somewhere, perhaps someone from the Sikh community to give him the break he or she needs, and we know of too many examples.

We have sikhs across the world who are so immensely rich... rich enough to buy countries, wealthy, devouter than devout, poised for presidencies and premierships in countries outside of Punjab, yet the thousands of Misals besiege the world of activists, Gurudwaras, charities, arts, Sikh world, you name it… We know that two Sikh chieftans, whatever their inspiration, beauty, noble standing, or underhanded dealings, cannot stand together on one issue.

Many in-depth analyses are needed as this is not just a result of post-genocidal culture – and we have suffered two genocides in fifty years. But whatever the dreams:

  • A Sikh President of a country, A global Sikh parliament, Justice, humanitarian help for survivors of 1984, and global safety for the prevention of genocide across the world...
  • Jobs, health and no poverty for all Sikhs and their outreach across the globe for all...
  • A Hollywood film on 1984 that tells the Sikh perspective (when entire planets can be portrayed, one does not need to be in a genocide denial dominated country for this to be created and depicted.

Our wishlists could be endless and we could together fill many thousands of pages...

The fact is that every Sikh is responsible for the Misal destruction culture that has sunk into the veins of 21st century groups. Their group, their jathebandi, their banner alone will single handedly conquer all and everyone else can be stomped out. And worse still – every Sikh is guilty of watching the names of others fall to the wayside instead of opening doors where possible for others.

We may be brilliant team workers in corporations and the outside world but we act like Misals at home.

I cannot underestimate, after twenty years of human rights work with survivors of the Sikh genocide, that there are, have been, and will be levels of infiltration of really genuine anti-Sikh elements in groups, genocide denial and outright intelligence agencies causing mayhem, but honestly, after all the wealth and the devotion and the vision, the Sikhs are our own external ‘enemies’ our only threat.  

The Indian nationalism and growth of Hindu extremism does cause red alerts on any 'prevention of genocide' radar. Safety and genocide, which are critical issues, including the nationalistic, extremist agendas that threaten to swallow our identity, are not our only problems. On every platform the unity of the Sikhs is cried for. Are all the Sikhs unable to hear? At this stage of relative safety for most Sikhs across the world, our 21st century Misals have fallen below the levels of degrading Misal’s intention of self-destruction into which Ranjit Singh was born and our 21st century Misal culture is our Achilles Heel.

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