Bollywood actor Anupam Kher has faced a strong backlash after he manipulated the verses from Gurbani for his tweet. He used the sacred words of the tenth Sikh Guru, Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji, to describe Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Sambit Patra.
On Wednesday, Anupam Kher tweeted: “सवा लाख से एक भिडा दूँ !:) @sambitswaraj.”
Kher’s tweet was seemingly in reference to Sambit Patra's social media post where he had shared a picture of a child sitting on his grandfather's dead body - the man who was shot in Kashmir on Wednesday. The photo was captioned: “PULITZER LOVERS ??”
Congress leaders Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa and Ravneet Singh Bittu have strongly criticized Anupam Kher for manipulating the holy words from Gurbani and have lashed out at Akali Dal for remaining silent in this matter. On the other hand, PYC President Brinder Singh Dhillon wrote to the Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh seeking action against Kher for showing Sikh literature in a poor light. Dhillon further stated that using the much revered religious verses ‘Sawa Lakh Se ek Ladauu, Tabe Gobind Singh Naam Kahaun’ for a person who is known for igniting communalism & has many statements against the minorities, Anupam Kher has deeply insulted the faith of the Sikhs, who are known for their sense of brotherhood and empathy.
He further said that Guru Gobind Singh ji has stated the verses while creating the Khalsa in 1699, encouraging the Sikhs to fight against oppression, but by using this for petty political statement-making, Kher has not only debased the verses by using it for a notorious leader, rather by changing the syntax he has disrespected Sikh belief system as well.
After this strong backlash, Anupam apologised on Twitter and quoted: "अपने पिछले एक ट्वीट में मैंने ग़लत लिखा था।उसके लिए क्षमाप्रार्थी हूँ।सही जज़्बात और शब्द।
“सवा लाख से एक लड़ाऊ,
तभी गोबिन्द सिंह नाम कहाँऊ!!”
This isn't the first time that Gurbani has been manipulated for social media 'quotes' but it is easy for any sane mind to realise that manipulation of the sacred words in the holy scriptures would obviously ignite debate and hurt the sensitive religious emotions of any religion, not just Sikhism. In this case, either it was an intentional move or a completely unthoughtful one!
What do you think?