I wrote these notes as I watched tonights episode of BBC1’s Remembrance: The Sikh Story.
Firstly, as per normal it’s ridiculous that programmes of such calibre and importance are shown at such a late hour. I’m also not sure how much it was advertised. It’s a credit to some of the people who I know who sent text messages to get people to watch it.
At the beginning of the programme there was a categoric mistake. NB The 5 K’s of the Sikhs are not all military based! Maybe time was an issue but there is no excuse to not delve deeper into the spiritual and scientific importance of Sikh symbols.
It was good to see where Sikhs had fought, for example, France, Burma and Italy… Actually, the book and film, ‘The English Patient’ also documents the contribution of Sikhs.
I suggest that the French need to see this documentary so that they can realise that Sikhs helped to free them. Maybe it could help them stop their stance on discriminatory action on religion.
It was good to see such fascinating pictures and the audio was truly amazing.
Midway through the programme revealed the shooting of innocent lives in Amirtsar in 1919. That was an event ironically conducted by General Dyer. Incidentally, the Programme forgot to mention that Sikhs were also the largest community who gave their lives for the freedom of India as part of the Quit India campaign.
As previously suggested with such rich content the BBC really needed to show this at peak viewing hours so that today’s generation can understand the rich heritage that we all share. Just as the Programme mentioned, maybe its political to keep the contribution hidden to aid a alternative view of patriotism for the general population.
On the whole, the programme was well put together. There is also a hidden message for SIkhs. We need to take advice given at the end by one of the interviewees, I.e As we sadly see the passing away of Sikh Soldiers, we urgently need to document their brave efforts for everyone to see and remember their sacrifices.