By Asia Samachar Team | MALAYSIA |
Sikh gurdwaras are set to receive Federal government funding after a 5-year break.
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has approved RM2.18 million to 120 gurdwaras nationwide to be distributed through the Malaysian Gurdwaras Council (MGC).
“We had put in a recent appeal to the Federal government to continue the earlier practice of providing an annual grant for gurdwaras. We had also highlighted the plight of the gurdwaras during the recent Covid-19 lockdown,” MGC president Jagir Singh told Asia Samachar.
“We are grateful for this allocation. For the first time, MGC has also received a direct allocation for itself. In the past, all funds were distributed to the gurdwaras.”
Between 2011 and 2015, MGC had received annual between RM1.5 million to RM2 million annual funding, all of which was disbursed to the gurdwaras.
At the same time, some states have also provided funding directly to gurdwaras. Among the states that have done so were Selangor, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Perak, Johor, Sarawak and Kelantan.
In 2017, Selangor had given RM1 million to gurdwaras and Sikh organisations. But the amount fell drastically to RM84,000 in the next two years.
In a letter to gurdwaras dispatched today (7 Sept), MGC had provided the breakdown of the funds. A copy of the letter was sent to Asia Samachar.
Each of the 120 gurdwaras will receive RM13,000 (totaling RM1.56 million) while RM440,000 has been set aside for special projects such as repair works for Langgar Hall, wash-room, leaking roof, improving drainage or fencing. Another RM180,000 is for MGC for Punjabi/religious classes and administration.
MGC will set up regional centres at Butterworth, Ipoh, Kampar, Kuala Lumpur, Seremban, Muar and Bentong to distribute the funds.
“We are very grateful and thank YAB Prime Minister for the above grant to the Gurdwaras and the Sikh Community,” Jagir said in the letter.
22 Selangor gurdwaras get another round of state funding (Asia Samachar, 16 Feb 2019)
Malaysian government urged to restart annual funding to Sikh societies, gurdwaras (Asia Samachar, 11 Aug 2018)
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