On April 21, the highly attended annual Vaisakhi Parade, which has become a regular highlight of Leeds’s cultural calendar, will travel through the streets of Chapeltown before landing at Millennium Square in the heart of Leeds City Centre.
As Ghagan Singh, General Secretary of the Sikh Temple on Chapeltown road, explains "The Nagar Kirtan is to celebrate the start of the Khalsa which was formed by Sri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib Ji”.
The Nagar Kirtan, also known as the Vaisakhi Parade as the celebration usually takes place in the month of Vaisakh, will begin at The Sikh Temple on 192 Chapeltown Road at 10am.
Vaisakhi is a long-established harvest festival in the Punjab region of India, and has become one of the holiest days in the Sikh calendar, marking the creation of the Khalsa, which celebrates the birth of the Sikh faith in 1699.
Mr Singh explains that this parade “will begin from The Sikh Temple on Chapeltown Road, Leeds and head towards Millennium Square."
On its way, this parade will stop at the Gurdwara Hargobind Sahib Ji on Harehills Lane, the Gurdwara Guru Kalgidhar Sahib on Cowper Street, and the Ramgarhia Board Gurdwara, also on Chapeltown Road.
Songs will be sung during this parade, which hopes to pass The Headrow and arrive at Millennium Square by around 1pm.
The celebrations at Millennium Square are due to last for two hours until 3pm, with an array of activities during this time, before heading back to The Sikh Temple, arriving at 4pm.
There will be various speeches given, “Langar” which is a free kitchen with a wide array of delicious vegetarian food, a martial arts display and a range of Sikh exhibitions.
All are welcome at this festive event, which will not only celebrate the Khalsa, but the Sikh religion and culture as a whole, doing so in a colorful, vibrant way with an atmospheric and joyful parade around the streets of Leeds.