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  • The kirpan is a ceremonial sword or dagger carried by baptised Sikhs. It is a religious commandment given by Guru Gobind Singh in 1699 in which all baptised Sikhs must wear five articles of faith at all times, the kirpan being one of five articles. The word kirpan has two roots - the first root is "kirpa", which means "mercy, grace, compassion, kindness"; the second root is "aan", which in turn means "honor, grace, dignity". Sikhs embody the qualities of a "Sant Sipahi" or saint-soldier. One must have control over one's internal vices and be able to be constantly immersed in virtues clarified in the Guru Granth Sahib. A Sikh must also have the courage to defend the rights of all who are wrongfully oppressed or persecuted irrespective of their colour, caste or creed.