Sikh Festivals

(2 X 25’) UK 1986/87

Channel 4

Producer: Sunandan Walia
Director: Yugesh Walia
Photography: Peter Rance

Two films illustrating the way two of the most important Sikh festivals are celebrated in the UK. Filmed in Leicester, Birmingham and Wolverhampton.

A Saint and a Soldier (Vaisakhi)

For Sikhs all over the world, the festival of Vaisakhi marks the founding of the ‘Khalsa’. On this day in 1699, Guru Gobind Singh responded to religious persecution by initiating his followers into a new fraternity. He motivated them into leading a just and courageous life and if necessary, giving up that life in defence of their faith. This film records scenes of celebration featuring the Sikh community in Leicester.

Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji (1469 – 1539)

The birth and development of Sikhism is told through the life and teachings of Guru Nanak, founder of the Sikh faith and its first spiritual leader. The word ‘Sikh’ comes from a Sanskrit word ‘sishya’ meaning disciple and was given to those becoming disciples of Guru Nanak. Against a background of rituals, superstition and tyranny, Guru Nanak preached a message of equality, tolerance, and selfless service.

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