Heritage of Golden Temple

The concept of the Golden Temple and its architecture are unique. It is open from all sides, and has numerous features that show both a distinctive architectural heritage as also an interesting synthesis of extant styles. It is expected that the nomination of the Golden Temple as a World Heritage Site will come through by next year, which also marks the 400th anniversary of the installation of Guru Granth Sahib at the Golden Temple. Indeed, Harmandar Sahib has been a source of inspiration to the community ever since it was founded. The recent statement by Akal Takht Jathedar Joginder Singh Vedanti that women should be allowed to perform kirtan at Harmandar Sahib is also to be seen as preserving the spirit of the heritage of the t important Sikh institution. At present, women do not perform kirtan at Harmandar Sahib. The egalitarianism that is so essential to the teachings of Guru Granth Sahib should be reflected in the living traditions of Sikh religious institutions. The Golden Temple’s nomination as a World Heritage Site would be important for this institution, but even before it happens the SGPC and the local administrative authorities must take steps to preserve its heritage.

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