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Canadian police hunt for Sikh trouble-makers

Canadian police has launched a big hunt for people behind the recent violence at two Sikh temples in Brampton on the outskirts of Toronto that has outraged the Sikh community as well as common people here.Read...


3 NRI Sikhs charged with assault opposing groups at Brampton Gurudwara

Toronto,  Canada
Balbir Singh/J. Gill windsor
April, 19, 2010

On Sunday, April 18, 2010, at 3:45 p.m. the fight broke out at the Guru Nanak Sikh Centre at Glidden Rd. near Hwy 410 and Steel Ave. Brampton, (15 miles from Toronto) when one group tried to break up the other group’s meeting. Two factions are vying for control of the centre. One is a minority group seeking to replace the current management faction it maintains is mismanaging funds.

You can see turbans everywhere. Wielding hammers, machetes, construction knives and small axes were used in fight as a group of about 100 people clashed at about 3:45 p.m. Four men were taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The police officers were already at the temple to keep order because of an ongoing internal dispute.

Several hundred people were in attendance at the temple. Peel Regional Police have charged three men with assault and assault with a weapon after a dispute inside the  temple escalated into an armed brawl.

1.    Harvinder Pal DHALIWAL, 41, from Brampton, has been charged with Assault. He was released and scheduled to attend court on May 20, 2010.

2.   Tehal SHERGILL, 60, from Brampton, has been charged with Possession of Weapon for Dangerous Purpose, two counts of Assault Causing Bodily Harm, and Assault with a Weapon.

  • He was held pending a bail hearing, scheduled for April 19, 2010.

3.   Satwant DEOL, 25, from Brampton, has been charged with Possession of Weapon for Dangerous Purpose and Assault with a Weapon.

  • He was held pending a bail hearing, scheduled for April 19, 2010.

According to CBC news: There is an ongoing civil dispute between several parties within the temple. Balraj Deol, editor of Khabarnama Punjabi Weekly said:

  • The dispute is an all-out power struggle.
  • It was not looking like a place of worship, it was looking like a place of war. It was a war zone.

Rampal Dhillon, member of a minority group, helping to replace current management said:

  • The few bad apples are destroying the whole community name.
  • And I just want the right people to step in so that these public funds are used in a proper way.
  • It's very sad and these things should not happen in a civilized nation."

According to The Toronto Star, Jagdish Grewal, editor of Punjabi Post said:

  • It was quite chaotic and saw two men lying outside with a bloodied hammer between them. Others were being given first-aid and taken to hospital.
  • Inside the hall, where the scuffle happened, the knives and machetes were still lying on the floor along with torn blood-soaked clothes.
  • There was blood too on the tiles.

Two weeks back, Manjit Mangat, Sikh lawyer (very popular in Brampton area) was stabbed with a knife (kirpan) at the Sikh Lehar Centre on Bramsteele Road in Brampton. He survived the attack. Manjit Mangat, a former justice of the peace who practices in Brampton, Ont., is also a trustee of the Sikh Lehar Centre, where protesters turned out on April 2 to demonstrate against the appearance of a controversial preacher Darshan Singh. Mangat started receiving demands to cancel an appearance by Darshan Singh in the days leading up to the event.

Peel Regional Police announced that  we remind members of the public that individuals who break the law will be dealt with in an appropriate manner. The investigation is ongoing and officers would like to speak to anyone who was present during the incident.

The World Sikh Organization of Canada (WSO) strongly condemns the events that took place Violence cannot and should not be tolerated. The Sikh faith teaches tolerance and love. Incidents like these do not represent the Sikh community or Sikh values.

It is even more unfortunate that these incidents have taken place this month as Sikhs celebrate Vaisakhi, one of the most important Sikh festivals of the year, which marks the formation of the Khalsa, the final form of the Sikh faith. At a time when Sikhs want to share their tolerant and inclusive religious values with their fellow Canadians and celebrate their over 100 year history in Canada, irresponsible and unacceptable behavior by some has cast a shadow over the entire community.

The onus is now on Canadian Sikhs to ensure that those individuals who act irresponsibly are sidelined and not allowed to further harm the Sikh image.





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