AMRITSAR SAHIB – In a bid to reduce air pollution, The SGPC has planned to switch over to solar energy at the Guru Ram Das Langar Hall (community kitchen) soon to cook langar in the world’s largest kitchen at the Golden Temple in Amritsar.
At present, at Sri Guru Ramdas Langar Hall, liquid petroleum gas (LPG) and wooden sticks are used as fuel for cooking langar for about 60,000 devotees on a daily basis. The number increases during weekends and special occasions.
Mumbai-based Enpar Group, a private company, has volunteered to donate the solar energy system worth Rs. 1 crore to the Golden Temple through the Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA).
The system will be installed in the newly constructed portion of the Langar hall, known as the world’s largest community kitchen. The steam that the system will generate will be used for preparing food, said Balour Singh, director of PEDA, who led a three-member team that visited the shrine on Monday to identify the place for installation of the system.
The langar preparation sourced through solar energy would not only reduce the use of wood, which is the main source of pollution, but would also help in reducing the expenses on LPG cylinders. Around 5,000 LPG cylinders are used in the kitchen every month.
The other two members of the team included Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) additional secretary Sukhdev Singh Bhoora Kohna and Golden Temple manager Sulakhan Singh.
The PEDA is playing a key role in the project as it will subsidise it.
Former PEDA chairman and SGPC member Bhai Manjit Singh, who was also present, said, “With the new system, the consumption of wood and LPG will decrease thereby reducing air pollution in the area. “Besides, food will take lesser time to be prepared,” he added.
The SGPC has already introduced a system at Gurdwara Shaheed Ganj, situated near Sri Harmandir Sahib (Golden Temple), under which food is prepared with the use of steam, but it is not generated by solar energy.
Apart from this, the SGPC has also started organic farming at Gurdwara Satlani Sahib to grow organic foodgrains and vegetables to be used in the langar.