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India Celebrates Sikh Environment Day In Memory Of Guru Har Rai

14 March marks the enthronement day of Guru Har Rai who is remembered for his love of nature.

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India
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Guru Har Rai
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The Sikh community across India celebrated the eighth annual Sikh Environment Day on Wednesday, 14 March, to pay tribute to Guru Har Rai, who was also known as preserver of nature.

According to Business Standard, 14 March marks the enthronement day of Guru Har Rai who is remembered for his love of nature.

On the eve of Sikh Environment Day, an organic farmer’s market was held in Amritsar on Wednesday, reported The Tribune. The market’s theme was ‘No more poison in my food’ and was aimed at raising awareness on organic farming and shunning plastics.

Farmers also extended support to the cause and vowed to go natural to preserve the already burdened ecology due to the over-exploitation of natural resources.

“We dedicated this week’s event to the Sikh Environment Day celebrations with emphasis on reducing non-biodegradable products and adopting healthy and natural practices. Our aim has always been to promote substitutes made from reused waste materials which mix quickly in the soil and becomes manure,” Gunbir Singh, convenor of the weekly programme, told The Tribune.

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Every year, the day is marked with environment friendly activities, plantation drives and promoting eco-friendly practices. The first celebrations were held in 2010.

According to EcoSikh, volunteers in US along with ‘Initiators of Change’ organisation organised a shout-out to public on 10 March in Ludhiana for a garbage free Punjab and shunning the use of Styrofoam (thermocol) and plastic disposable ware.

Over 60 young Green Warriors , conducted a symbolic clean-up at a roadside garbage spot on Ishmeet Singh Road by Model Town Cremation ground.

Who was Guru Har Rai?

According to Sikhhistory.com, Guru Har Rai was the seventh Guru of the Sikh faith, he was the son of Baba Gurditta and grandson of Guru Hargobind, Nanak VI. He was born on 16 January 1630 at Kiratpur, in present-day Ropar district of the Punjab.

He was said to be Guru Hargobind's favourite grandchild, and he had been given the name of Har Rai by the Guru himself.

According to scriptures, Har Rai was returning home after his riding exercise. From a distance he saw Guru Hargobind sitting in the garden. He at once got off his horse to go and do him homage. While hurrying his robe was caught in a bush and a few of the flowers were broken from their stems. This pained Har Rai's heart. He sat down on the spot and wept bitterly.

Guru Hargobind came and consoled him. He also advised him: "Wear your robe by all means, but be careful as you walk. It behoves God's servants to be tender to all things." There was a deeper meaning in the Guru's words. One must live in this world, and yet be master of oneself.

Guru Har Rai is credited for the preaching of Sikh culture arorss India.

(With inputs from The Tribune, Business Standard, EcoSikh and sikhhistory.com )

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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