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Vedanti Bans Kala Afghana's Writings
By S.P. SINGH
Gurbakhsh Singh Kala Afghana retired in 1981 as inspector of police. In 1984, while he was visiting Canada, India cancelled his passport and confiscated his property. Now based in Canada, the Sikh author's books Biparan Kii Riit Ton Sach Daa Maarag and Bachittar Natak: Gurbani Di Kasvuti Te contend that the Dasam Granth was not entirely authored by Guru Gobind Singh. Renowned Sikh scholar Gurtej Singh, jathedar of Takht Damdama Sahib Giani Kewal Singh, and many others have stoutly defended Kala Afghana's writings. Sikh scholar Giani Bhag Singh Ambalavi had to apologise in the late 1970s for having questioned the validity of the Dasam Granth. Gurbakhsh has questioned the commonly held belief that Guru Tegh Bahadur died for Hindus. He has written, 'the only complaint before the emperor was that Guru Tegh Bahadur was fanning insurgency against the government. Thus those claiming that the Guru sacrificed his life for Hinduism are sullying the principles of Sikhism.'
The Indian Express, Chandigarh (Punjab, India), Oct. 25, 2003
"Controversial Canada-based Sikh author Gurbakhsh Singh Kala Afghana, whose books had kicked up a row over authorship of the Dasam Granth, was today directed by Akal Takht Jathedar [high-priest] Joginder Singh Vedanti to stop all further sale, printing or dissemination of his writing till clearance from the top temporal seat. 'The jathedar would also be issuing a directive to the S.G.P.C. to set up a panel of scholars to review the works of Kala Afghana and any final decision would be taken only after the panel's report was received,' Vedanti's secretary Prithipal Singh Sandhu told The Indian Express. He said the issue was discussed by the five Sikh high priests at their meeting in Amritsar today and the decision to ask the S.G.P.C. to set up the panel was taken unanimously."
"Kala Afghana's works had courted controversy after he clamed in a series of books that Dasam Granth was not entirely penned by tenth Sikh Guru, Gobind Singh, and he criticised a number of Sikh traditions. Renowned Sikh scholar Gurtej Singh had stoutly defended Kala Afghana's writings. Sources said he was recently consulted by the jathedar over the issue. Sources said today's decision was aimed at sending a strong message to those questioning the scriptures or attempting to raise controversy about the Dasam Granth. A spate of media reports on the Dasam Granth had earlier forced the Sikh clergy to clamp a ban on any public debate [on the Dasam Granth]."
"Interstingly jathedar of Takht Damdama Sahib, Giani Kewal Singh, had commended Kala Afghana's work in a letter written to the author. However, Kewal Singh did not oppose the ban on publishing any further writings of Kala Afghana in today's meeting, sources said. A number of Sikh scholars had demanded that Kala Afghana be summoned to the Akal Takht and punished for questioning the scriptures. This is not the first time that the Akal Takht has had to take action against individuals over the Dasam Granth issue. Sikh scholar Giani Bhag Singh Ambalavi had to apologise at the top temporal seat in the late 70s for having questioned the validity of the Dasam Granth."