Stockton — The National Council of World Sikh Organization of USA at its first meeting here on August 31, unanimously extended full support to United Akali Dal’s decision to boycott the September elections in Punjab. Through unambiguously worded resolutions, the National Council called upon the Sikhs in Punjab not to participate in the election process as elections have ceased to have any relevance to the Sikhs in the context of army attack on the Golden Temple, government inspired holocaust against Sikhs, continued army occupation of Punjab and with thousands of Sikhs facing police torture and illegal detentions. The resolution also called upon Sikhs living abroad to write to their relatives and village leaders and jathedars to boycott the elections and support Khalistan movement.
The regular meeting was preceded by Shabad Kirtan, Ardas and the holy Hukam Nama. At the outset delegates were introduced by S. Didar Singh Bains, President WSO International followed by the welcome speech by a National President S. Ganga Singh Dhillon (reported in full on page 5). Prof. Sidhu attended the meeting as special invitee.
The meeting continued from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. with short breaks for lunch and dinner. In the course of the marathon session, all items on the agenda were discussed in a rare spirit of dedication, harmony and seriousness. The members contributed to the discussion without any prejudice and _ recriminations. Five task forces with well-defined areas of activity were created and National and regional coordinators were appointed to each of the task forces.
* To determine accurately the total number of Sikh families in United States with full information regarding the strength of the family, home mailing address, telephone number, profession/business, etc., the Sikh Census Task Force was created and Dr. Harjinder Singh of Cincinnati was appointed as the national coordinator.
Following four regional coordinators were also appointed:
- Dr. Gurcharan Singh Dhillon — West
- Dr. G.P. Singh — South
- Dr. Satinder Singh Sandhu — East
- S. Balwant Hansra — MidWest
* To solicit new members and identify those who applied during the previous year and to provide to the members a regular feedback on all activities of the organization, the Membership Task Force was created with S. Amrik Singh Gill as the National Coordinator and following four regional coordinators.
(1) S. Kulwant S. Sidhu — West
(2) Dr. East
(3) Bibi Jasbir Kaur — MidWest
(4) S. Darshan S. Virk — South
* To create an understanding of Sikh religion and also to create an awareness of the Sikh tenets among other religious communities of United States particularly those facing similar problems of identity and religious freedom, the Sikh Religious and Interreligions Task Force was created with Dr. Harbans Singh Sraon as the National Coordinator and following regional coordinators.
(1) S. Ajit Singh Bainiwal — Bay area (West)
(2) S. Manmohan Singh — South CA. (West)
(3) Gyani Wadhawa Singh Gill — Central Valley (West)
(4)S. J. S. Sethi — South
(5) S. Kuldip Singh — MidWest
(6)S. Bhambra — East
* To project correct image of Sikhs as peace-loving, hardworking and deeply religious people as well as to establish proper rapport with the U.S. Press and T.V. the Media Task Force was created with S. Ganga Singh Dhillon as the National Coordinator and four regional coordinators.
(1) Manjeet Singh Sidhu — West
(2) Dr. Gurcharan Singh —East
(3) Dr. Karamjit S. Rai — Mid West
(4) S. J.S. Sethi/S. Hardam S. Azad — South
It was also decided that Prof. Sidhu and Dr. Gurcharan Singh will act as alternate national coordinators in the absence of S. Ganga Singh.
* To develop social interaction with other American nationals in order to acquaint them with Sikh ethos, Sikh culture and Sikh literature, a Community Action Task Force was created with Dr. Narinder S. Kapany as the National Coordinator and four regional coordinators:
(1) S. Ajaib Singh Sidhu — West
(2) S. Harbhajan S. Nayyar — East
(3)S. G. S. Brar — South
(4) S. Ranbir S. Sandhu — Midwest
National Council felt that the financial matters need to be handled with greater care and budget must earn credibility of the members. On a resolution moved by Dr. Karamjit S. Rai a seven member’s finance and budget committee was formed comprising the President, Sr. Vice President, four vice-presidents and the Treasurer. It was decided to open two accounts (1) General Account and (2) Day to day account. S. Lakhmir S. Chima Sr. Vice-president and S. Bir Ishwar S. Grewal, Treasurer were authorized to operate the General Account with joint signatures. The amount transferred to day to day account of the President’s office will have to be fully accounted for with cancelled checks and relevant vouchers which would have to be sent to the treasurer every month without fail. S. Ganga Singh was particularly keen and insisted on developing a sound and credible system to keep finance above any controversy and skepticism.
A three member committee comprising Dr. Gurcharan S. Dhillon, S. Gurnam Singh Pamma and S. Bir Ishwar S. Grewal was formed to finally settle the pending accounts with Dr. Sulakhan S. Dhillon. The committee was asked to submit its report within two weeks.
Through a resolution moved by Dr. Gurinder Singh Grewal, it was decided to form a committee to effectively and expeditiously deal with any sudden crisis or urgency and to give instant guidelines to the members. This committee will comprise President WSO International, President WSOUSA, President WSO Canada and the Secretary General.
- Ganga Singh Dhillon proposed that an institution of Sikh Cultural Studies be created to foresee and identify events that could affect the Sikhs and to conduct research into the politico economic viability of Sikh aspirations. It was decided that Dr. Gurcharan Singh (New York) be requested to act as the coordinator and choose his team of experts for this purpose. The President introduced a proposal to form a SIKHPAC for developing a mutually beneficial interaction with the political parties of the United States so that significant role can be played at the time of various elections in this country. Members unanimously endorsed the proposal and felt that such a PAC was already long overdue. On the motion of Dr. Gurinder Singh Grewal a three member committee comprising S. Ganga Singh Dhillon, Dr. Manohar Singh Grewal and Dr. Naunihal Singh was entrusted to work out the details of the PAC. To remove the misgivings of certain members it was made clear that the PAC will be fully answerable to the National Council and National Council will exercise effective control over.