- The President of India has greeted the citizens on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti.
- It is a sacred festival of the Sikh community and is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, who is believed to be born on Poornima (full moon) of the Kartika (8 month of Hindu calendar), which falls on 30 of November in 2020.
Guru Nanak Dev:
- In 1459 at Talwandi Rai Bhoe village near Lahore, which was later renamed as Nankana Sahib.
- He was the first of the 10 gurus of Sikhism.
- Initiated inter-faith dialogue way back in the 16 century and had conversations with most of the religious denominations of his times.
- Wrote compositions which were included in the Adi Granth, compiled by Guru Arjan (1563-1606), the fifth Sikh guru.
- This came to be known as Guru Granth Sahib after the additions made by the 10 sikh guru Gobind Singh (1666- 1708).
- Advocated the ‘Nirguna’ (devotion to and worship of formless divine) form of bhakti.
- Rejected sacrifices, ritual baths, image worship, austerities.
- Set up rules for congregational worship (Sangat) involving collective recitation.
- Gave the basic mantra of ‘Ek Onkar’ to his followers and insisted on treating all human beings equally, without discriminating on the basis of caste, creed and gender.
- Death: In 1539 at Kartarpur, Punjab.
Relevance of Guru Nanak Dev for Modern India:
- Building an Egalitarian Society
- Social Harmony
- Creating a Just Society
- Gender Equality
- Bringing Peace
In 2019, the 550 birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev was celebrated and the Kartarpur corridor was inaugurated, which is an important step towards easing the tensions between India and Pakistan.