Monday March 18, 2019
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The spirited journey of Canadian Sikhs

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Sikh gents in New Westminster Courtesy of the Sikh Heritage Museum of Canada | shmc.ca

By Baisakhi Roy

In 1907 a two page article appeared in the Canadian Life and Resources Magazine entitled “Another type of New Citizen” with the subtitle – A glance at the spirited Sikhs of India who are becoming a feature of the industrial life of our Pacific Coast.

The article started with the following paragraph…

“To those who are interested in the development of our country every type of new settler is a subject for study. The English and Americans we know and the Irish and the Scotch, and of most of the people of Europe who are coming to us we have some broad idea.  But there are arriving now on our Pacific coast men of a nation about whom most Canadians have only a very shadowy idea – the Sikhs of the Punjab.”

And ended with the following paragraph…

“What will be the outcome of this migration from crowded India to sparsely settled Western Canada? What success will these Sikh have in a strange land and what part will they play in the industrial life of this country?  These questions the future alone can answer”

Here are but a few answers…

They toiled in the factories

They cultivated the fields

They ran the sawmills

They built the railways

They carried the cement

They established Sikh Gurdwaras (Temples)

They served in the Canadian Army

They resisted relocation to British Honduras

They advocated for the passengers of the Komagata Maru

They persevered without wives and families

They overcame disenfranchisement

They became professionals

They became Police Officers

They became boxers

They became the Premier

They became the Minister of Revenue, Multiculturalism and Defence to name a few

They became Canadian and received the Order of Canada.

Source: http://www.bramptonguardian.com

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Sikhs In U.S. To Donate Funds, Food To Unpaid TSA Workers

Leading the community efforts, Khalsa is currently working with several local grocery stores that are eager to offer foodstuff at discounted prizes. 

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Photo: metro.co.uk

Two Sikh communities in the US state of Indiana will donate funds and food to Transportation Security Administration (TSA) workers, as they remain unpaid due to the ongoing partial government shutdown.

The Sikh community of Fishers, Indiana, and Gurinder Singh Khalsa of SikhsPAC, a national Sikh political action committee, are coordinating with Mario Rodriguez, Executive Director of the Indianapolis Airport Authority, and Aaron Batt, TSA Federal Security Director, to support TSA agents, who are impacted by the shutdown, the American Bazaar news portal reported on Thursday.

“The community has come forward and is keen to support the workers who are undergoing the crisis of missing their paychecks,” Khalsa told the portal.

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Sikhs in US to donate funds, food to unpaid federal workers,representational image

He said that $5,000 in gift/grocery cards and more than $5,000 worth of hot food will be delivered to the TSA agents at the Indianapolis Airport on January 28.

Leading the community efforts, Khalsa is currently working with several local grocery stores that are eager to offer foodstuff at discounted prizes.

“We are looking at the places that can offer us good discounts so that we can deliver maximum stuff to workers affected,” he said.

TSA official Batt said the communities’ efforts were “overwhelming and amazing”.

To ensure that the community is able to offer helping hands to federal workers until the shutdown ends, the Sikhs in Fishers have vowed to encourage more Sikh temples and faith-based organisations in the state to come forward in assisting in the coming weeks if needed.

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Leading the community efforts, Khalsa is currently working with several local grocery stores that are eager to offer foodstuff at discounted prizes.  ( IANS)

“Our community kitchen will continue serving every Sunday and we will deliver hot food weekly to our TSA public servants on a weekly basis until the shutdown is lifted,” Khalsa said.

TSA falls under the Department of Homeland Security and has about 60,000 employees.

Its workers are one of the lowest paid employees and have been working without pay since the shutdown began on December 22.

Also Read: Are Indian Scientists’ Minds Cluttered With Prejudices?

TSA also has a much larger minority concentration of employees with about 22.9 per cent of them being African American employees, according to the Bureau of Labour Statistics.

The partial government shutdown continues as President Donald Trump demands $5.7 billion for a wall along the US-Mexico border and Democratic lawmakers decline to approve it.

Roughly 800,000 federal employees have been furloughed or are working without pay since then. (IANS)