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Indian Government Officials Now Hounding Punjab's Mother Teresa

I.P. SINGH

 

 

 

For the girls of this "Unique Home," intervention by India's officials has turned their lives upside down and this has started a phase of emotional upheavals for them as well as for their "mother," Parkash Kaur, who has 62 "daughters" ... from infants to grown up ones, in the Home.

This home is for abandoned girls but it is much more than an orphanage or a shelter home. It has become a real home for the children who live there.

Just when everything was running smoothly in their lives, an order from the Social Welfare Department and Jalandhar District Commissioner ("D.C."), Priyank Bharti, started this latest upheaval on Tuesday, June 12, 2012.

The D.C. has ordered the orphaned girls to be shifted to Nari Niketan or Children's Home - both of which have been described as problematic institutions which do very little compared to what Prakash Kaur does in the role of a true mother.

According to the officials, Prakash Kaur's Unique Home was not registered as per Juvenile Justice Act provisions, even though it is a properly registered Trust and is being run as such.

Another technical lapse unearthed by the bureaucrats is that Unique Home had not filed some ducuments ("FIR"s) for the girls who had been abandoned at their doorstep and were subsequently brought up by it as 'daughters', and for the 12 girls it had help marry and settle down in a normal lifestyle.

Girls of this Home have reacted very angrily to the official attitude and have said that none of them are willing to be shifted away from there and be forced to leave their mother.It would mean becoming orphans all over again!

Hundreds of supporters and citizens have reacted angrily to the way government officials have handled the issue, holding that if there were a few technical issues these could have been sorted out quietly when everybody knew that the Home was doing a wonderful job and the girls were studying in the best of schools and being brought up well.

People have also thwarted the attempts so far by the official machinery to shift the children from the Home with police help.

Community leaders have taken the position that "the officials should have guided Parkash Kaur or other Trustees to get the registration instead of swooping on them as if they had done something very bad."

Meanwhile, the Trust filed the papers, as requested, on Tuesday, June 12, 2012, and again on the following day, but the 'file' was returned with the quibble that it was not properly 'indexed'!

With respect to the alleged flaw over the purported non-filing of some documents re the children who have been left abandoned at the Home,  Prakash Kaur said: "I have not registered any FIRs for my bringing up the children. I first rush them to the doctor ... and then my priority remains with their upbringing."

"Unique Home" was started by Parkash Kaur in 1991 after she was thrown out from Nari Niketan on a chilling winter morning.

"It was raining when I was thrown out after I raised my voice against wrong-doings at the Nari Niketan. Six girls came with me and I started this Home. Now, the same people are scheming against this Home," she said.

"After she started this Home, right-thinking people started supporting her and the children and now there are hundreds of supporters of this home in India and abroad," said Naunihal Singh, a Trustee of the Home.

Sikhs from across the diaspora who are "supporting us have been frantically calling us after the administration said in a section of the media that 40 girls were missing from the Home," he said. "It shows the callous and irresponsible attitude of the authorities who have shown insensitivity towards the impressionable minds of the children. It will take a long time for the children to emerge from the shock ... [they] have been reminded by these officers that they are orphans," he said.

"The administration never saw how Parkash Kaur was bringing up the girls in the best possible manner and would even take care of the poor and needy around but they swooped on the Home as if some criminality had been committed," said Paramjit Singh, a neighour of the Home.

Women living on the street where the Home is located also freely shower praises on Parkash Kaur's piety.

 

[Courtesy: The Times of India. Edited for sikhchic.com]

June 16, 2012

 

 

Conversation about this article

1: Harminder Singh (New York, U.S.A.), June 16, 2012, 4:51 AM.

Didn't The New York Times report the other day - as did sikhchic.com, and the world press - that an international study had found that India was the worst country in its dealings with and treatment of women. Hm-mmm-mm. I wonder why!

2: Manjit Singh  (Canada), June 16, 2012, 8:12 AM.

I suspected this might happen when some Sikh religious personalities and Sikhs from the diaspora organized a religious smagam about two or three months ago to honor Bibi Parkash Kaur for her work at the Unique Home and offered to help the Trust that runs the Home. That time I felt that the Government would be taking special note of her as it was highly unlikely that the Government would sit still over this.

3: Sangat Singh (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), June 16, 2012, 1:28 PM.

To impart an unforgettable lesson to Priyank Bharti would be for Prakash Kaur to take all her wards for a 'dharna' in front of Bharti's court and inform the TV networks. In a matter of minutes all the media-hungry politicians from both divides would be clamouring to be seen on TV and show extreme concern for injustice to the homeless, poor, lovely children. Better get the flamboyant Navtej Singh Sidhu to do the poetic justice (pun intended). Bharti wouldn't know where to hide form the media's 'Yamraj-s' and, next thing, you will hear that she has been transferred to Moga District for being so heartless. Invoke the power of the media for instant results.

4: Amar Singh (Napier, New Zealand.), June 16, 2012, 4:03 PM.

Welcome to India. I wonder if a Hinduvata brainwashing institute would be in such a risk as a Sikh institute in the true spirit of "Sarbat da Bhalla" is.

5: Gurteg Singh (New York, U.S.A.), June 16, 2012, 8:53 PM.

Right wing Hindu agencies, aided by their Hindu propaganda media, will manufacture controversy on the flimsiest of pretexts to malign anything associated with Sikhs.

6: T. Sher Singh (Mount Forest, Ontario, Canada), June 17, 2012, 6:19 AM.

S. Sangat Singh ji: The exercise is known in some circles as "Turning on the lights!" Because, the cockroaches immediately run for cover ...

7: Jagdeep Singh (Punjab), June 17, 2012, 9:37 AM.

I don't know why people show only concern to make the law correct. Why don't they come up and say that I will adopt one girl and make her my daughter? According to the article, there are more than 60 girls at the Home. We cannot find 60 Sikh families to adopt them, to share their love? We have become so weak that we can only comment on the blogs. I am sorry to say nowadays Sikhs are just behaving like Hindus ... they like to make comments but do not take any action to resolve the situation. I am not that much financially sound but pray to Waheguru to give me power to adopt one orphan in my life.

8: Sangat Singh (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), June 22, 2012, 1:06 AM.

My apologies. It is reported that Priyank Bharti has had a technical change of sex with immediate effect. I have it on good authority that it is a 'He' and not a 'She'. Any obduracy previously reported, I presume, remains unaffected by sex change. The Empire remains gender friendly.

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