SURREY, BC, Canada—After months of campaigning and division in the local Sikh Community, the Sikh Youth Slate led by Raghbir Singh Nijjar defeated the Sewadar Slate led by Karnail Singh Rai by a margin of only 197 votes.
Much of the local community was saddened and embarrassed at the fact that two Sikh Slates were running against each other. In past, the Sikh Community was united against the “Moderate” Slate. This year the “Moderate” Slate did not run after two embarrassing defeats in 2009 and 2012.
After many efforts to keep the two sides together and to attain Ekta in the communitym the elections went ahead as planned. The Sikh Youth Slate received 4133 votes, the Sewadar Slate received 3936.
The elections have caused a lot of divisions in the community with many families and friends torn between the two sides. There is a demand from the local community to stop Gurdwara elections, and follow the Panthik model of selections. The community now hopes that they can move past these divisions and fights and move towards ekta and unity in the community.