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The Sikh struggle : Origin, Evolution and Present Phase


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I highly recommend everybody reads this book:

The Sikh struggle : Origin, Evolution and Present Phase


Ram Narayan Kumar & Georg Sieberer

ISBN 81-7001-083-7

it details the history of the sikh community from ancient history (when of course there were no sikhs) to 1990. it is by far the best and most honest account i have read. it also delves deeply into the aggrievances of the sikhs and the current state of disarray in punjab.




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The texts that really brought home the reality of post-84 punjab and diaspora politics and militancy was both Darshan Singh Tatla's 'Sikh Diaspora' and 'Ethnic Conflict in India: A Case-study of Punjab' by Prof. Gurharpal Singh.

Jeurgensmeyer's infamous article on Bhindranwale is a good fun, and his other works on the psychology of terrorism are interesting. One book he published in the late 90s 'Terror in the mind of God' interestingly had a profile on bin laden, that risin cult from japan and kharkoo among others actually before 9/11 happened.

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Best thing to do is get them through inter-library loan. Gurharpal's book is really expensive otherwise (£60 I think). Tatla's book I found years ago in a shop in london, but again have a search on something like www.abebooks.com for a cheap s/h copy.

Jeurgensmeyer's article can again be got hold of via inter-library loan. They send you a photocopy in return for a small fee. Speak to your library. I got rid of my notes, articles and books on 80s and 90s politics a few years back, so I haven't got the reference I'm afraid. I'm pretty certain you'll find it in the back Pettigrew's book 'Sikhs of Punjab'. If it isn't there, let me know and I'll track it down. Jeurgensmeyer used Bhindranwala's speeches as source material to tease out his basic philosophical justifications for using such violence.

I feel there is a horrendous amount of naivety regarding the later 80s and early 90s and the actions of the likes of Manochahal. These books simply narrate the reality of inter-kharkoo violence. Gurharpal's in particular traces the political situation through those initial elections, post-president's rule. Tatla looks at violence/Gurdwara politics and media in UK mainly post-84. Pettigrew looks specifically at individuals' testimonies of those in KCF post Labh Singh. It should be essential reading for all these young kids who have been sold it as such a black and white issue.

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