Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Tour report of Sindhis of Gujarat during April 2009

Tour report of Sindhis of Gujarat during April 2009
(Mohan G. Rohira, Advocate)

Published in (1) “Sujag Sindhi” (Dev) dt. Jun-1-2009 (2) “Hindu” (Sindhi) June-2 and 4-2009


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SIHOR (April 22, 2009):
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This tiny town is situated on Western Rly at a distance of 30 Kilometers from Bhavnagar. Its total population is only 70,000 including 100 Sindhi families. The President & Secretary of Sindhi Samaj, Sihor, respectively are Shri Gordhandas Mewalamal Chawla and Shri Hareshbhai Narumal Chimnani. They have built Sri Guru Nanak Sindhi Gurudwara in Sindhi Colony where they often meet together on social, religious, happy and unhappy occasions. They are normally in different businesses. Here the specialty of Sindhis is that they speak only in Sindhi only at home and among themselves. Of course some Gujarati words have made inroads in Sindhi Language due to the overall atmosphere of Gujarati language. They celebrate the annual festivals of Guru Nanak  Jayanti & Chetichand on a grand scale e.g. by arranging "Akhand Path Sahib” for 3 days, keeping their shops closed throughout the day, eating food together twice a day & arranging procession in the town. Not only that, but they also arrange "Prabhat Pheri" for 15 days in Guru Nanak  Jayanti. They also celebrate other annual festivals with much fun & fair. They are strongly united. If any Sindhi is ill-treated by any local person or if there is death of a Sindhi in the town, all the Sindhi shops remain closed on that day. Thus they serve a good and inspiring example for the Sindhis of other cities. However it is shocking to state here that I could not find even a Single Sindhi person there who could read & write in Sindhi Language or take free Sindhi Literature from me as all their correspondence is in Gujarati language. They appreciated this & assured me to implement shortly my suggestion of keeping Laminated Murtis of Sai Jhulelal at their shops/ homes for keeping their identity in tact (on the lines of Bangalore Sindhi Samaj). 17 important Sindhis attended the meeting for 2 hours on 22-04-09 and their Tel. Nos were noted. The places worth seeing in the town are Sri Gotameshwar Mahadev mandir & Sri Navnath Mandir.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
PALITANA (April 23, 2009)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This tiny town is 65 km away from Bhavnagar. Its total population is 80,000 including 500 Sindhi families. The town has 6 Sindhi Panchayats showing the names of towns in Sindh from which they or their parents   had   originally come during partition of the country, such as 1) Shikarpuri Sindhi Panchayat (President, Ghanshyambhai Gambhani), 2) Kandhra Sindhi Panchayat (President, Udhomal Kukreja), 3) Riyasat Sindhi Panchayat (President, Maheshbhai Badlani) 4) Pirgothai Sindhi Panchayat (President, Rameshbhai Kanjani, 5) Khanpur Sindhi Panchayat (President, Panjumal Mandani), 6) Ghotki Sindhi Panchayat (President, Shambhoobhai Talreja). Moreover they have one Sindhi General Panchayat named "Palitana Sindhi Samaj" whose Secretary is Shri Sudhamabhai Manjhar & President is Shri Ashokbhai Prabhumal Nainani. He is also President, of Bhavnagar Distt. Sindhi Panchayat. All the aforesaid persons of all Sindhi Panchayats were present (total 24) in the meeting dt. 23-04-2009 for 2 hours which was called by them on my request with a short notice, which shows their sincerity and devotion for the Community.


The Sindhis of this town have built 3 centres namely 1) Jyoti Swaroop Sindhi Dharamshala, 2) Riyasat Sindhi Hall and 3) Sant Kanwar Ram Hall. These places are mainly meant for their meetings for social, religious, happy & unhappy occasions. The town has 7 Sindhi Temples which include 3 Sri Guru Nanak Gurudwaras, 3 Jhulelal Mandirs and 1 Ganapati Mandir. All the Sindhis here speak in Sindhi only at home & among themselves. It is gratifying to note that they have one Hemu Kalani Sindhi High School wherein Sindhi (Devnagiri Script) is taught as one of the subjects. Practically all are in different businesses. They celebrate annual festivals such as Guru Nanak  Jayanti & Chaliha Sahib with "Langar Prasadi" (Preeti bhojan) on a grand scale.  Moreover on auspicious occasion of Chetichand they take out procession with "Behrana Saheb" on a large scale and serve "Prasad" to all passers-by including local persons and all sindhis of the town take "Priti Bhojan" (preeti bhojan) together, so much so that they don't light fire in their own kitchen on that day. They are united and meet among themselves on marriage and death occasions. They do much social work through their panchayats such as giving financial help to 15 Sindhi poor families, giving prizes to merits students, celebrating Sindhi week during Shravan month wherein they arrange competition among Sindhi students, arrange medical camps etc. They have good relations with local people. The town has many world famous Jain temples worth seeing named Shrutunjay Giriraj temples (on a hill nearby) & Hastagiri temples and a Shrutunjay Dam.

No comments:

Post a Comment