In the latest development in the Nanakshahi calendar row, the Sant Samaj has indicated that it is ready for a dialogue with Takht Damdama Sahib jathedar Giani Balwant Singh Nandgarh and others to find a solution acceptable to all. Nandgarh had already opened the door for the negotiations.
The pitch for a dialogue between the groups was initiated by the United Akali Dal (UAD) and a meeting between representatives of the Sant Samaj and the UAD members was held at Jalandhar on Saturday.
Spokesman for Sant Samaj Jasbir Singh Rode told HT over phone, “There are some issues, which can be discussed when both sides sit across the table. We have no intention to hurt the chair of the jathedar.”
The change in stance by the Sant Samaj has come just a day ahead of the celebration of Guru Gobind Singh’s birth anniversary on January 5 (Monday), according to the Nanakshahi calendar. Interestingly, in spite of the willingness to sit across the table and talk, the Sant Samaj is all set to pass a resolution against the Nanakshahi calendar.
Rode said, “UAD leaders infor med us that jathedar Nandgarh and other groups supporting the Nanakshahi calendar are ready to talk. We are open to this. It must be understood that all references to Sikh history are in a particular ‘Samant’ (format).”
“We do not understand how Nanakshahi calendar is going to fix the issue of a separate Sikh identity. We have no problems if some people see it this way. Our stand is that a calendar for Sikhs should be based on references to history and customs as documented by Sikh gurus and historians,” he added.