Talhan Village Residents Organize Annual Akhand Path At No. Road Gurdwara

By Balwant Sanghera

Village Talhan, near Jalandhar in the Punjab, is very well known not only in the Punjab but also overseas. Its Gurdwara named after two noble and kind souls –Baba Nihal Singh and Baba Harnam Singh is a very popular place of worship for people from all around and a large number of NRIs. Here in the Metro Vancouver area, families belonging to village Talhan, their relatives and friends have been organizing Akhand Paath Sahib at India Cultural Centre of Canada Gurdwara Nanak Niwas situated on Richmond’s Highway to Heaven (aka #5 Road) for the past 25 years.  This year again, all of them came to-gether from September 7 to 9 for the 26th Akhand Paath Sahib. The annual Akhand Paath Sahib was commenced on Friday, September 7. On Saturday, September 8, the devotees, along with members of the Gurdwara Management Committee changed the Chola of Nishan Sahib. On Sunday, September 9, there was Bhog of Shri Akhand Paath Sahib.

During these three days, Metro Vancouver residents of Talhan, their friends and relatives attended the Gurdwara in large numbers to pay their obeisance. On all of these three days, the ladies with their helpers worked hard in the kitchen to ensure that each one of the attendees enjoyed a very delicious vegetarian langar. On this special occasion, one of their fellow villagers and former Sarpanch of the village,Bhupinder Singh Bains, had come from the Punjab. Bains mentioned that the Gurdwara in Talhan brings in very large donations from devotees. Most of this money is used for worthwhile causes and in helping the needy. He said that the Gurdwara provides a lot of money to the nearby hospital to give free medicines to the needy. This was reinforced by one of the local organizers of this initiative and community activists Sarwan Singh Randhawa. Randhawa told the congregation that after paying for the expenses related to the Akhand Paath Sahib any leftover funds are donated to B.C.Children’s Hospital, Cancer Foundation and Heart and Stroke Foundation.

The Talhan Sangat must be commended for carrying on this tradition for more than twenty five years. It provides them with a great opportunity to stay in touch with each other. The involvement of young people in this process is also commendable.   Events and functions alike this act as great bridge builders between generations. Also, it encourages young people with same heritage and background to strengthen their mutual bonds. Often, in our community there are complaints that our youth is becoming alienated. However, at functions like this they feel more valued and appreciated. The Talhan Sangat and the organizers must be commended for carrying on this noble task over the years. Another notable positive development in this case is that over these years, the Talhan Sangat has stayed fully united. The way they work to-gether in a very cordial environment offers an excellent example and model for others in our community.  Management Committee of India Cultural Centre Gurdwara Nanak Niwas is very thankful to the entire Talhan Sangat and the organizers for setting a great example for others in our community.

Balwant Sanghera – India Cultural Centre of Canada Gurdwara Nanak Niwas, Richmond, BC

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