Legal battle resolves conflict in Sikh community, access to Canadian gurdwara

Gurdwara Khalsa Prakash in Windsor, Ontario, had been limiting membership to maintain control, reports CBC News

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Manjinder Kooner, left, and Gurdial Dhami, right, stand outside the Gurdwara in Windsor after an Ontario superior court justice ruled on a case that limited membership. (Jason Viau/CBC)

By CBC News | CANADA |

Legal battle resolves conflict in Sikh community, access to Canadian gurdwara

Gurdwara Khalsa Prakash in Windsor had been limiting membership to maintain control, reports CBC News

Manjinder Kooner, left, and Gurdial Dhami, right, stand outside the Gurdwara in Windsor after an Ontario superior court justice ruled on a case that limited membership. (Jason Viau/CBC)

A legal battle over obtaining membership at a Sikh place of worship has been resolved after 10 years before the courts.

The executive committee of the Gurdwara Khalsa Prakash in Windsor had been limiting membership to maintain control of the Gurdwara, court documents say.

“It really made me feel bad because there was a time when I could not even come to the Gurdwara,” said Manjinder Kooner.

At times, he had a no trespassing order for the property on County Road 42. Kooner was a member until 2012. He said that’s when it was unfairly terminated.

Following a recent Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision, Kooner said he and hundreds of others will get their memberships back. And many applicants who were also turned away can re-apply.

For Kooner, the main reason he wanted to maintain his membership was to have a vote at the Gurdwara.

“If there’s any serious decisions that you [have to make], you were part of it,” Kooner said. “That privilege was taken away and for me that was the main reason.”

He was still able to attend religious functions, but even that became increasingly difficult during the divisive legal battle.

“When there’s a person standing there that is not being fair to the public then nothing goes into your brain. That was the biggest problem,” said Kooner.

Read full article, Legal battle resolves conflict in Sikh community, access to Gurdwara (CBC News, 3 July 2019), here.

 

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