By Asia Samachar Team | MALAYSIA |
Amarjit Singh Augarh wants to see more youth involved in the running of Gurdwara Sahib Sungai Besi, also known as the Shapaan (factories) gurdwara as it is located right smack in a clutter of factories in the Kuala Lumpur suburb.
The newly elected gurdwara management committee (GMC) president recalls how he came onto the gurdwara scene.
“After my father died, the gurdwara elders roped me into the team. It was a good learning experience,” he told Asia Samachar in a telephone conversation.
“I was lucky. I had a chance to learn. I saw what was happening, the good and the bad. I want more youth to gain similar experience. The youth must be able to stomach what they see and improve on it.”
On Sunday (11 Oct), the 46-year old fleet supervisor at Malaysia’s national energy company Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) was elected as the president at the gurdwara’s annual general meeting.
Amarjit, who is also a collector of old coins and pothis, was elected over two other contendors, Captain (Rtd) Pritam Singh and Baldev Singh. As per the gurdwara constitution, he will now invite members to form the GMC.
At one time, Sungai Besi was home to some of the deepest tin mines in Malaysia. It also has many heavy industries such as steelworks, waste steel plants and other steel industries. But development is fast changing its landscape. On its doorstep are massive developments like the Bandar Malaysia.
Amarjit is no stranger to the Sungai Besi gurdwara. His late father, Bahadur Singh, a retired Sargeant from the Malaysian armed forces, was active at the gurdwara. After opting for early retirement, he started operating a taxi. He later encouraged his wife, Manmohan Kaur, to obtain a license and operate a taxi as well, making her the first Sikh woman taxi driver in Malaysia. At 65 years old, she is running the taxi service.
“I used to handle the naujawan [youth] activities. I have handled three pirdhia (generations) here. Some of the young parents remember me as the uncle who taught them mool-mantar. Later, I was teaching their kids,” he said.
On plans for the gurdwara moving foward, Amarjit said the congregation was already blessed with a functioning gurdwara. “Our old gurdwara was built of tin sheets and fathey (wood). We want to keep the Sanggat together and develop the naujawans,” he said.
He said he will consult the congregation members next to form the GMC.
Amarjit was born in 1974 in Taiping. He is married to Muni Kaur and they have four children. He can be contacted at +6019.2645679.
Malacca gurdwara committee booted out in no-confidence motion (Asia Samachar, 7 Oct 2020)
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