World Sikh Convention, New York 2018. A personal perspective…..
I am leaving New York having a very positive experience over the last 2 days at the World Sikh Convention. When invited I was not sure what to expect. I have always done Niskam Seva in the arena of education, camps and talks. But it is always important to be aware of the Panthic agenda and be part of it.
The World Sikh Parliament is essential for us, because how much longer can the Khalsa Panth leadership be chosen by a letter of Sukhbir Badal or his stooges. It is important the Khalsa Panths makes its own decisions in its own destiny. This is the dream of Jathedar Hawara.
It was so nice to see so many prominent Sikhs from around the world who are working hard for the Panth. Starting with a letter from Jathedar Jagtar Singh Hawara, then Dr Amarjit Singh from New York, Dr Arjan Singh of WSO, founders of United Sikhs, Jaspreet Kaur from Voices of Freedom, Amar Singh Chahal – lawyer of Jathedar Jagtar Singh Hawara, over 100 jathebandi and gurdwara leaders from so many states from USA, then Canada sevadaars from Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa, prominent leaders from Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and New Zealand. Then Gursikhs from UK, Italian Gurdwara leaders, Germany and Holland leaders, various TV and radio personalities like Surinder Singh Talking Punjab, TV84, Singhstation, etc. Then Sikhs for Justice representatives, Referendum 2020, etc. Then many others provided support in letters or TV videos like Bhai Ram Singh DT, Bhai Joginder Singh Vedanti, Bhai Harpal Singh Cheema, Bhai Joga Singh UK, Bhai Satnam Singh Khanda, Bhai Manpreet Singh UK, Bhai Baljit singh Khalsa, Navkiran Singh Advocate. I had seen so many of these Gursikhs active in Seva on TV or heard of them in Panthic magazines, but to meet and sit and share ideas with them was precious to me.
It was notable how much pyaar exists between so many of them and their clear dedication to make the World Sikh Parliament a reality.
I rarely see Sangat sitting more than a few hours at UK Sikh conferences. But in this one, the Sangat found so interesting that it went on 6 hours on Saturday and 6.5 hours in Sunday. I was personally impressed by the intellect and dedication of many of the speakers.
It was a convention of activists and Panth dardis, as the process for establishing ideas, process and protocols for developing a Panthic decision making institution.
A lot of work is being done and consensus is being built in the positive direction.
Some Sikh organisations did not attend, but did attempt to spread misinformation on social media, but as the content of the convention becomes freely available over next few days, they will find they are completely mistaken and will hopefully join back in.
A Call Out to Panthic Sikh Professionals –
The WSP is coming to fruition. Too many Sikh youth sit and complain about Badals, SGPC, phoney Jathedar’s. Now is the time to step forward to bring the control of Sikhi away from Badals and SGPC. Instead give it a global perspective and voice. Become part of the process to professionalize an institution. When the creators of SGPC set it up, they did not expect it to last 125 years. Now we have a chance to set up a global Sikh institution so that our kids can live in a Sikh Nation where the decisions are made by its global followers in a sincere way based upon Gurmat idealism.
Guru Maharaj kirpa Karan, the more these events happen, more global active Sikhs will network, build trust, pyaar and common goals, policies and stop duplicating efforts. The world is becoming a smaller place. The Khalsa Panth is coming together and realizing it can build independent worldwide institutions and make global decision making a new reality. It’s a path with many obstacles. It’s always hard to bring consensus in a divided community, but in the end once it’s a reality, the future generations will benefit from it. I believe this is an essential gift we need to give future generations of Sikhs.