Thousands of Afghan Sikhs and Hindus may have left their ancestral homeland of Afghanistan and are settled in the West and some in India, yet their heart is with fellow Afghans irrespective of religion and class. Documentary film-maker Pritpal Singh, now living in London, greets his fellow Afghans on the joyous occasion of Eid, without acrimony but with the hope that the presently vulnerable Sikhs will be taken care of by the majority Muslim brethren in war-torn Afghanistan. World Sikh News shares his video message of Eid greetings and yearning for peace in his beloved country Afghanistan.
SPEAKING CHASTE DARI/FARSI, REFERRING TO AFGHANS AS FELLOW BRETHREN, documentary filmmaker Pritpal Singh echoes the feelings of the Sikh community in extending Eid greetings to the people of Afghanistan.
Pritpal Singh, in his Facebook posts, has been yearning for peace. He has been sharing the pain of whosoever gets killed in war-torn Afghanistan. He shares the pain of the Sikh community, which two months ago faced a dastardly attack in a Gurdwara killing 26 Sikhs -men, women and a child and one Muslim protector of the Gurdwara while greeting Afghans on the occasion of breaking of the month-long fasting.
He recalls how in the past Sikhs, Muslims, Hindus and others formed the great Afghan milieu and lived in a multicultural society. Like many Afghans, he years for those days to return. Despite their progressive and peaceful lives in the West, Pritpal Singh tells WSN, “Many Afghan Sikhs and Hindus pray that peace comes sooner than later in Afghanistan.”
As the vulnerable 650 odd remainders of the thousands of Sikhs in Afghanistan wait with bated breath to leave their homes and businesses to migrate to India, Canada, USA, Australia or where, Pritpal Singh, like all Sikhs worldwide -individually and collectively, are worried about their safety and security.
When a hospital was attacked a few days ago, Pritpal Singh wrote, “We should not have to say that women and babies must not be killed. Yet we must.” A humanist to the core, the young documentalist prays and expresses concern not only for the Sikhs but other Afghans too.
𝘞𝘦 𝘚𝘩𝘰𝘶𝘭𝘥𝘯’𝘵 𝘏𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘛𝘰 𝘈𝘴𝘬 𝘛𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘉𝘢𝘣𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘈𝘯𝘥 𝘔𝘰𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘴 𝘕𝘰𝘵 𝘉𝘦 𝘒𝘪𝘭𝘭𝘦𝘥. 𝘠𝘦𝘵 𝘞𝘦 𝘔𝘶𝘴𝘵
— TheDutchSikh (@TheDutchSikh1) May 16, 2020
With roots in Afghanistan, Pritpal Singh through his documentaries –Mission Afghanistan and Hindukush to Thames has unravelled the history of his country and the remarkable coexistence that the communities enjoyed till recently. These films provide a first-person account of the life and times of the Sikhs and Hindus in Afghanistan and beyond to their new homes in the West. Making these films at great risk, he has shown traditional Afghani grit and determination.
Congratulating the Muslim world on Eid-al-Fitr, it is time for all of us to join them in prayer for joy and peace to return to all world communities plagued by the COVID19 pandemic.