The Sikh community, globally, has a long-standing tradition of bravery and selfless service known as ‘Sewa Bhaav’. Time and again, Sikhs have demonstrated their commitment to the welfare of their fellow citizens, regardless of the circumstances.
The tradition of service and bravery among Sikhs dates back centuries. Sikhs make up a significant portion of the Indian Armed Forces, and their contributions to the nation’s defence are widely recognized and respected. They have consistently demonstrated their willingness to protect the country and its citizens, often at great personal risk.
The unwavering spirit of Sikhs and their legacy of bravery and service have deep historical roots. Rooted in the teachings of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism, the values of selflessness, humility, and service to others have been passed down through generations. The tenets of Sikhism encourage its followers to stand up against injustice, protect the weak, and serve humanity without any expectation of reward. These values have shaped the Sikh community’s actions throughout history, inspiring them to be at the forefront of relief efforts, military service, and social welfare.
Sikh warriors, known as the Khalsa, have played a crucial role in the history of India. The Khalsa was established by Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Sikh Guru, to protect the innocent and uphold justice. Throughout history, the Khalsa has demonstrated unparalleled courage and fearlessness in the face of adversity. Their reputation for bravery has been solidified by their unwavering commitment to their principles and their readiness to defend those in need.
The spirit of service and bravery exemplified by Sikhs extends beyond the battlefield. The community’s resilience and compassion are evident in their disaster relief efforts and social initiatives. Sikhs have always been among the first responders in times of crisis, providing essential supplies, medical care, and emotional support to affected communities. Their tireless efforts in disaster-stricken regions showcase their dedication to alleviating the suffering of others, regardless of the challenges they face.
The 1984 Bhopal Gas Tragedy: In one of the world’s worst industrial disasters, a gas leak in Bhopal, India, led to thousands of deaths and left many more injured and exposed to harmful chemicals. The Sikh community stepped forward to help the victims, providing medical aid, food, and shelter. Sikh volunteers worked tirelessly to alleviate the suffering of those affected, demonstrating their selflessness and commitment to serving others in times of crisis.
The 2013 Uttarakhand Floods: In June 2013, a multi-day cloudburst in the Indian state of Uttarakhand led to devastating floods and landslides, claiming thousands of lives and leaving countless people stranded. The Sikh community mobilized swiftly to provide relief to the affected communities. They organized langars to feed thousands of people daily, set up medical camps to attend to the injured, and participated in rescue operations, often risking their own lives to save others.
The 2019 Kerala Floods: Kerala experienced massive floods in August 2019, causing widespread destruction and displacement. The Sikh community quickly responded to the crisis, sending volunteers and resources to help the victims. They provided food, clean water, medicine, and other essential supplies to those affected, demonstrating their bravery and selflessness in the face of adversity.
Sikh Taxi Drivers in Australia during the Covid-19 Pandemic: During the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, Sikh taxi drivers in Australia stepped up to offer free rides to healthcare workers who were fighting the pandemic on the frontlines. Despite the risks associated with the virus, these Sikh drivers chose to provide an essential service to support healthcare workers, showcasing their selflessness and bravery.
Another exemplary display of Sewa Bhaav by Sikhs is seen in their practice of Langar, the community kitchen service that offers free meals to anyone, regardless of caste, religion, or social status. Langars have been instrumental in feeding millions of people in need, particularly during times of crisis. Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Sikhs stepped up to provide meals and support to those in need, further exemplifying their selfless spirit.
In today’s world, where divisions and differences often take centre stage, the Sikh community stands out as a beacon of hope and unity.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of Khalsa Vox or its members.