Toronto, October 25
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has wished the Sikh community on the occasion of Bandi Chhor Divas and said it was also an occasion to recognise the important contributions the Sikh faith have made – and continue to make – to building a stronger Canada.
“Today (Monday), we join Sikh communities in Canada and around the world to celebrate Bandi Chhor Divas,” the prime minister said in a statement on Monday.
Today, families and friends will gather to pray, feast, and light candles at their homes and Gurdwaras as symbols of hope, guidance, and freedom, he said.
“On Bandi Chhor Divas, we reflect on the importance of standing in solidarity with those around us facing injustice and serving those in need,” Trudeau said.
“On this holiday, Sikhs commemorate the story of Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji, who was imprisoned in 1619 at Gwalior Fort. When given a chance to be liberated from prison, the Guru refused to be released without the 52 innocent kings who were imprisoned alongside him. Ultimately, he succeeded at freeing himself and the kings,” his statement noted.
This celebration is also an opportunity to recognise the important contributions Canadians of the Sikh faith have made – and continue to make – to building a stronger Canada, the prime minister said in the statement.
“On behalf of the Government of Canada, Sophie and I wish a happy Bandi Chhor Divas to all those celebrating,” the statement concluded.
On the prisoner liberation day, the sixth Sikh guru, Sri Guru Hargobind, returned to Amritsar after being released along with 52 princes from imprisonment by Mughal Emperor Jahangir from the Gwalior prison in 1619.