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waheguru je ka khalsa waheguru je ke fateh!

Sangat Ji I wanted general opinions as to how to handle 12 o clock jibes? do you take it offensively? ignore it? or laugh with them?

Ive only ever read about them on here but with the recent introduction of Indians into our workplace its now becoming more common. Is there a line that can be crossed and what is it?

Also how would sangat handle people saying "get a trim!" etc in the workplace? I've never encountered these issues before and am abit hesitant about over-reacting; espically as one of the main instigator is in senior managment.

waheguru je ka khalsa waheguru je ke fateh!

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Fateh Ji,

Please read this article:

An Empty Pitcher Makes Noise

Amardeep Singh Fri Jan 04

Life would be boring without jokes. We all crack jokes. For some years now, in India most of the jokes are being cracked on the Sikhs. There are these 12 o'clock jokes, Banta Singh-Santa Singh jokes…the list is endless.

Picture yourself as a Sikh and seek an honest response from within yourself. Would you be able to handle these wisecracks, targeted at you day in and day out, by colleagues, friends, the unknown person standing next to you, anyone and everyone taking the liberty?

I know your immediate reaction - "sure man, it's only a joke." You are absolutely right. It is only a joke. However, as much as you believe you can, when a joke enters the bloodstream as a cancerous virus and right from your childhood you get targeted daily the fact is you will not be able to handle it.

On the other hand, look at the Sikhs. Have you ever seen any one of them getting irritated with these constant digs and cracks at them? You wouldn't have. Ever thought why they don't get affected? Well, the answer lies in a couplet by Bhagat Kabeer:

Kaho Kabir chucha ghat bole, bhariya hoe so kabahu na dole. (Page 870 Guru Granth Sahib)

("Says Kabir, it is the empty pitcher that makes noise. The one that is filled makes no sound.")

Sikhs, by nature are self-respecting, courageous, hardworking and enterprising. Look into their short span of history and you will find their pitcher is full of sacrifices and hard work, which has contributed so much towards nation building of India. If not for them, the course of Indian History would have been very different. That's what makes them the 'Spirit Born People' and gives them the ability to simply ignore the digs targeted at them.

Volumes could be written on the contributions made by the Sikhs, who constitute less than two percent of the Indian population. However, I am listing just a few events, which should make my friends start thinking.

Sikhs have always believed in the right of an individual to practice a religion of their own choice and have always fought against tyranny. In his memoirs, Tuzak-i-Jahangiri, the fourth Mughal ruler, Jahangir, wrote about Arjan Dev, the fifth Sikh Guru, "For a long time the thought had been presenting itself to me that he (Guru Arjan) should be bought into the fold of Islam".

In 1606, when the Guru refused the forceful conversion, he was put to death by being boiled in a cauldron and sitting on a hot iron plate with hot sand being poured on him.

Aurangzeb, the sixth Mughal ruler, was a fanatic who desired to convert every Indian to Islam.

Tyrannized by Aurangzeb's forceful conversions, in 1675 a delegation of Kashmiri Brahmins approached Tegh Bahadur, the ninth Guru of the Sikhs. Guru Tegh Bahadur offered to sacrifice his life for their cause. This was a unique, unparalleled sacrifice in the annals of human history. The Guru laid down his life in defense of religious tolerance, freedom of worship and freedom of conscience. He gave his life so that the Hindu's right to wear the sacred thread was not violated, despite the fact that Sikhs themselves do not believe in these rituals. This was a unique martyrdom in defense of basic human values.

For about seven centuries, since the invasion of Mahmood Ghazni in the tenth century, many ruthless invaders played havoc with the life of Indians. Recurring defeats had sapped the psychic energy of the Indians so much that they had resigned themselves to their fate. It was Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of the Sikhs, who imbibed the fearlessness amongst Sikhs to fight against all odds.

Guru Gobind Singh wrote to Aurangzeb, "When all means have failed, it is right to pick up the sword".

In the year 1699 Guru Gobind Singh proclaimed, "call me by the name of Gobind Singh only if I succeed in making the sparrows (Indians) fight against the Hawks (mighty foreign rulers) and am able to make one Sikh fight against an army of one hundred thousand".

Guru Gobind Singh fought oppression and intolerance. He did not fight against any territory or worldly power, nor against any religion or sect. He made nationalism the religion of Sikhs. Apart from the numerous Sikhs who lost their life under him in defense of the Sikh cause, two of his sons were martyred on the battleground, while the other two chose to be bricked alive rather than give up their esteem.

In 1709, Guru Gobind Singh left this world with a lifetime of heroic events that changed the history of India.

Bulle Shah, a celebrated Sufi Muslim Saint, has said, "I neither say of the past, nor of the future, but I talk of the time of Guru Gobind Singh and openly declare that, but for him, all Indians would have been circumscribed against their will and converted to a foreign culture and religion".

Although it was short lived, after a fierce battle with the forces of Aurangzeb in 1710, Banda Singh Bahadur was the first Indian to re-establish Indian rule after seven centuries of foreign rule.

Between 1713 and 1801, the Sikhs were homeless and lived as Guerillas, demonstrating heroic acts of courage at every possible instance. The tyrant rulers had placed a reward of Rupees Twenty-five for every Sikh head and Rupees One Hundred for every Sikh caught alive. Those caught alive were cut to pieces.

Sikhs faced these persecutions with a brave face.

In 1738, the Persian ruler, Nadir Shah, invaded India from Kabul and went on a rampage up till Delhi. He returned to Persia in the summer of 1739 with a huge booty of looted wealth, the Kohinoor diamond, women, artisans and slaves. To avoid the summer heat, the convoy would rest during the day and travel in the night.

Right from the Punjab to the Indus, Sikh guerillas would attack the convoy at the peak of the day's heat at 12 noon. They freed many women, artisans and slaves, depriving Nadir Shah of large amounts of wealth. The Sikhs escorted the rescued women back to their homes in North India. It was for this heroic act by a handful of Sikhs, of fighting against the might of Nadir Shah and freeing the women, which no one else dared, that the Sikhs started getting seen as people who get 'mad' at 12 noon and, therefore, the 12 o' clock jokes of nowadays.

When Nadir Shah asked Zakhariya Khan, "Who are these barbarians and where do they live", Zakhariya replied, "They are the followers of Nanak and live on the saddles of their horses."

The opportunistic trait of other Indian communities can be seen through the fact that when danger lurked on their heads, they preferred to wear bangles and sit at home rather than risk their lives for the sake of righteousness. When peace emerged then, rather than being thankful to the Sikhs, these communities demonstrated their opportunism by targeting as a laughing stock the heroism of the Sikhs who had risked their lives for others.

I too had penned an article on this sadistic humor:


There's a Snicker ad on India TV. A goalkeeper starts looking funny and the crowd shouts 'iss ke toh chaar baj aye' a spin from 12 o'clock.

Though I must say that recently the Indian ads have stopped making spoofs on Sikhs and showing Sikhs wrongly.

Guru Rakha

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Fateh Ji,

They try to tease us saying it’s 12 o’clock,

It’s time they realized who they actually mock?

The Invaders and plunderers took their mothers, daughters and wives,

The brave Sikhs saved them even at the expense of their own lives.

At noon and midnight when humans tend to become slow,

On the captors the Sikhs dealt their tactful blow.

They freed the captives and honorably returned them to their homes and loved ones,

Treating this as their duty towards mankind and not for any selfish reasons.

Today the timing has become a joke and they crack these jokes at our expense,

Our ancestors did us proud and the descendants of the saved should have sense.

Guru Rakha

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I've personally never had anyone say that, and I work with mostly non-Punjabi Indians. However if confronted I know the proud history of my forefather well enough, as some members have stated it. Just narrate the story to them, they'll walk away with their tail between their legs.

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I tell u how best to handle it....

Its worked for me on 2 occasions brilliantly.

Its often Hindus who say these uneducated jokes about 12 o clock in order to mock sardars/singhs.

I mentioned this before on another topic a while ago.

1 hindu gujarati once tried to mock me about 12 o clock and how I was going mad...

Its a common misconception among hindus,. They seem to think that at 12 o clock sardars lose their minds....

But i explained to him in a gentle tone, that at 12 o clock sikhs used to launch midnight raids on afghani armies in order to save the HINDU WOMEN SEX SLAVES that were KIDNAPPED from their homes to be sold in KABUL/

I also explained that the story of sikhs "going mad and losing their head" was a misconception. I told him the true story was that hindu women were saved by sikhs.

I also threw a jibe back at him by saying "well hindu men could not/would not save their daughters honour by fighting, So sikhs DID."

So next time u try to crack a midnite joke, think about the hindu sex slaves being saved by sardars , because of hindu men's cowardice.

You should of seen his face, he was speachless, and going red in shame. He was ashamed that hindu men could not save their sisters/daughters honour and instead sometimes even handed over their daughters to invading armies as gifts. He was dripping in swett due to shame.


Put them stright the 1st time, and they will never do it again.

Alternitavely just grab him and sort him out, but i was at work so i had no option but to kindly explain it to him. But it worked brilliantly.

So i advise all those who are fed up of these jokes, to use my method of explaining and educating these uneducated people who like to mock sikhs.

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whats a 12 o' clock joke whats it about.

a 12 o clock joke is when some1 (usually a hindu individual) jokes about how sikhs "go mad at 12 o clock and lose their minds".

Back in the mughal times, when hindu women were captured by mughal or afghan armies to be sold as sex slaves in kabul or to be kept as slaves in the harim...

Sikh groups used to launch daring rescues. SIkhs only used to have few in number against the many hundreds or even thousands of enemy afghan or mughal armies.

So sikhs used to use every battle tachtic they could to swing an advantage in their favour.

1 of these tachtics was to attack under the cover of dark. Usually 12 o clock (midnight) raids were carried out and the booty of the armies was attacked and captured women were freed.

Once freed they were allowed to go back to their families or escorted back to their families.

Once saved, the sikhs respected the women like their own mother, sister or daughter (just as the guru instructed all sikhs to do so).

These rescues showed great bravery and courage from the Sikhs. Many successful raids were carried out on many occasions. Mughals began to fear sikh attacks at night.

SInce the raids were at midnight usually... thus giving rise to the silly uneducated joke about sikhs "going mad at 12 o clock".

That is what the joke is about in simple terms. ANd any <banned word filter activated> can see how the joke does not make sense, and often the joke teller is the fool who is insulting himself (if he is a hindu).

I find it extremely Insulting to the Brave and couragous SIkhs who carried out the rescues , when these people try to make jokes of it.

Its spitting on the sacrifice the brave sikhs made.

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the 12 o' clock joke refers to problems the sikhs had with the east india trading company in lahore. but if someone does say one to you, just respond with the information above about the rescuing of hindu women from their captors.

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