The Punjab government has decided to hold virtual celebrations to kick off the historic 400th Prakash Purab of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur from April 28 amid the uncertain situation resulting from the continuous surge in Covid cases, Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh announced on Friday.
Online kirtans will be organized by the government on Television and social media channels, with people being urged to offer Ardas for ‘sarbat da bhala’ from their homes, the Chief Minister said, adding that he will speak to SGPC chief Bibi Jagir Kaur to shift all celebrations to the virtual mode in view of the crisis situation.
While he and the whole state had been looking forward to celebrate the great event in a befitting manner in memory of Guru sacrifice for Hindus, the situation was not conducive to grand celebrations, noted the Chief Minister.
He appealed to people to watch the events on TV and offer ardas from their homes for sarbat ka bhala on May 1 – the Guru Purab of the ninth Guru. All programmes will be held as scheduled now, but through virtual mediums, with no physical gatherings, an official spokesperson disclosed after a meeting of the executive committee set up to oversee the historic celebrations.
Chairing the meeting, the Chief Minister exhorted the people to participate in the various events, including live televised kirtans etc, which will also be telecast on social media, from their homes.
Earlier, MPs Manish Tewari and Gurjeet Aujla stressed the need to have symbolic celebrations this year, with no big functions or gatherings till the Covid situation eases. Cabinet Minister Charanjit Singh Channi was of the view that televised/online celebrations will send out a positive and constructive message to the people during these difficult times.
Chief Secretary Vini Mahajan also suggested online programmes since the mutated strain of the virus seemed to be extremely dangerous. The SGPC should also be taken on board with this decision, she said.