Petition update

Questions that we put forward to the Charity Commission

Guru Nanak Gurudwara (Leics) Sangat

Aug 1, 2016 — These are the key questions for the Charity Commission to ask the charity (Gurudwara committee), which we have included in our serious complaint document submitted to the Charity Commission.

We also request that Sikhs also call the Guru Nanak Gurudwara (Leicester) on 0116 251 7460 or arrange to meet with them to ask:

In reference to the racist illegal immigrant, please ask them:

1. Why have you knowingly employed an illegal immigrant (Joginder), for the past 5-6 years, via a cash-in-hand arrangement, as can be evidenced by many temple members and a committee member?

2. Why have many temple members paid Joginder £20 cash for his work during night shifts for ‘Akhand Paath’ ceremonies over past 5-6 years?

3. Why have many temple members paid Joginder, varying sums of cash, for his work as a cook, during their religious ceremonies?

4. On Sunday 1st May 2016, why did a committee member admit that Joginder had previously been employed by the charity, in front of 100+ congregation members, if you’ve never employed him? Two committee members have already admitted proved that he has been employed, one of who is openly willing to testify this in writing/verbally to the Charity Commission.

If the charity denies knowledge of Joginder being an illegal immigrant, ask them:

1. Why the cash-in-hand arrangement, if you didn’t know Joginder’s immigration status? Why have congregation members been allowed to directly pay cash to Joginder? Why didn’t you take Joginder’s National Insurance number and process his salary, in the same way that other temple employees are paid? Where are Joginder’s wage slips? He has been paid cash for working 4pm to 9pm, 7 days a week, for past 5-6 years, why isn’t he paying any tax like other temple employees?

2. Why didn’t you check his immigration status, when you received the Special Delivery letter from the concerned temple members on 5th April 2016? That letter SPECIFICALLY asked you to do this.

3. Why didn’t you ask Joginder to show his passport or visa documents, after the congregation notified the charity about his illegal immigration status?

4. As a part-time cook, Joginder has been allowed to interact with vulnerable elderly, women and children temple goers, why didn’t you at least check his ID, before continuing to employ him? Is this how a responsible charity would act, after being notified by its temple members that Joginder is a lawbreaker?

Other important questions include:

1. Why did the charity ignore the temple member’s verbal complaints, over a 1-year period about Joginder refusing food to Non-Sikhs, which is against the Sikh religion (and institution of the Free Kitchen service provided by all Sikh temples in general) and against the charity objective to positively promote Sikhism?

2. Why did you ignore the Special Delivery letter asking you to terminate Joginder’s appointment as a part-time cook, because of Joginder’s anti-Sikh actions on charity premises, which are against the charity objective? Does Sikhism sanction racism? If not, why allow it to take place on charity premises at a Sikh temple, causing the charity to do the opposite of what it claims to do?

3. Why did you ignore the temple member’s deadline for termination of Joginder’s appointment as a part-time cook, knowing that this fact would be made public, if you didn’t, as this was CLEARLY stated in the letter? Why didn’t it matter to you that the charity’s reputation would be damaged, if that were to happen, which it eventually did? Why have you been so careless, casual and laid-back about the charity’s reputation?

4. Even if you didn’t know about Joginder’s illegal immigration status, why would you allow ANYONE to cook and serve food in the kitchen (even on a selfless/voluntary unpaid basis), if you had received many complaints from Sikh and Non-Sikh temple members, about that person being racist and acting in anti-Sikh ways on charity premises, over a 1.5-year period, which is against the main charity objective?

5. Why have you allowed Joginder to damage the reputation of the charity, by continuously refusing food to eligible Non-Sikhs over a 1.5-year period?

6. Why have you ignored the serious complaints of Sikh temple members? The charity claims to serve the Sikh community, why ignore them over a 1.5-year period? Why ignore the people who fully fund the charity?

7. When a committee member, also made complaints about the racist behavior of Joginder on charity premises, why did you ignore him? Surely, there must have been a charity management meeting to discuss the serious issues of racism and anti-Sikh behavior, taking place on charity premises, which was damaging the reputation of the charity. When did such high-priority and essential meetings take place and what were the outcomes?

8. When the temple members started the online petition on 23rd April 2016, and the serious issue became public, why did you continue to ignore complaints against Joginder, knowing that doing so would further damage the reputation of the charity?

9. What is the reason for ignoring over 340 petition supporters over a 3-month period to date? What were you hoping to achieve by publically ignoring racism and anti-Sikh behaviour on the charity premises? Is this how a responsible charity should act? Is this an acceptable standard of service provided by a charity?

10. Did the charity management internally discuss the potential impact of publically ignoring the online petition (against racism and anti-Sikh behaviour at the Sikh temple), on other Sikh temples (similar charities) and their respective reputations and that of the Sikh community as whole?

11. Why did charity management harass the gym members on 29th April 2016? Even if they had started the online petition against racism on charity premises, why would you harass them for doing that? Was it anti-Sikh of them to petition against racism? Do you think it’s acceptable for a charity to harass members of public for speaking up against racism, especially at a place of worship, which claims to positively promote the spiritual teachings of Sikhism?

12. Racism is against the spiritual teachings of Sikhism, why have you ignored complaints about racism over a 1.5-year period? By acting in this way, has the charity not acted in anti-Sikh ways and not done what it claims to do? How can the charity management be allowed to manage the charity from now onwards, after behaving in this grossly negligent way over the past 1.5-years?

13. When a temple member recorded that video showing a sober White woman explaining that Joginder had said he doesn’t respect her, he wasn’t even going to feed her and that she feels unwelcome on charity premises because of his behavior, before she was reduced to tears, what action did you take to investigate this serious matter, especially after the video was uploaded onto YouTube and had entered the public domain? Was there a meeting? What was the outcome of that meeting? Why was Joginder not at least removed from cooking and serving food, when he had acted in anti-Sikh ways, as evidenced by the White woman’s statements in that video, as well as, the statements made directly to the committee on 3rd July 2016, by the person who recorded the video?

14. The content of that video supports the temple members claims made about Joginder in their Special Delivery letter and in the online petition, months earlier, why did you ignore the video footage and continue to employ Joginder up to 1st August 2016, when the temple members approached the Charity Commission? For what specific reason was Joginder allowed to continue cooking and serving, particularly after the serious video recorded incident?

15. In the video Joginder clearly states in Punjabi that he refused food to the sober White woman because she bought a meat (containing) box, yet, in your public statement issued in the ‘Des Pardes Weekly’ on page 52 on 15th July 2016, you suggested that the sober White woman was refused food on that occasion because she was not allowed to eat at the temple because she had been “subject to prior warnings”. Why does the charity’s/committee’s justification for denial of food CONTRADICT Joginder’s audible reason for the same provided AT the time of the incident? What is the reason for the contradiction? Had you even seen the video before you composed your weak public statement?

16. When the temple members rebutted your public statement and asked a series of questions in their statement, published in the same paper on 22nd July 2016, what are your responses to those valid and relevant questions?

17. For arguments sake, even if Joginder had refused food to her because she’s no longer allowed to eat at the temple, why did he call her a “dirty woman”, insult her and make her cry, as witnessed by Sikh temple members? Is this kind of behavior acceptable from an employee/volunteer on charity/Gurudwara premises? If not, why has Joginder not been removed, over 1 month after that video was uploaded onto the Internet?

18. By ignoring all of the above and not removing Joginder from his position as a cook for over 1 month AFTER that video was made, what do you think the general public (Sikhs and Non-Sikhs) now think about the Sikh temple (charity) and about Sikh temples in general (similar charities)? What impression have you given to the general public about the charity’s standpoint on racism, by publically ignoring that video and by issuing a weak statement, which is contradicted by Joginder’s words and actions, in the video?

19. By employing Joginder, who has racially discriminated against Non-Sikhs and therefore acted in anti-Sikh ways on charity premises, is the charity doing what it claims to do i.e. to positively promote the spiritual teachings of Sikhism? Is the charity management acting in line with the spiritual teachings of Sikhism by siding with the racist Joginder? If not, why should it be allowed to further mismanage the charity and further tarnish its already damaged reputation?

20. Do you agree that if you had honored the request of Sikh temple members in April 2016, when they sent you the letter and/or started the online petition and you had terminated Joginder’s employment as a cook, that he wouldn’t have been there on 1st July 2016, for that video to be filmed? Evidently, the charity is responsible for that video and the damage it has caused to the charity’s reputation and to that of similar charities (other Sikh temples). How can the person who filmed the incident be responsible for defaming the charity, as he simply showed what the charity allows to happen on charity premises, by not removing the racist illegal immigrant Joginder from his job as a part-time cook, as requested by the temple members, over a 1.5-year period?

21. On 3rd July 2016, why did you allow 2 non-committee members to sit in a meeting that was only supposed to be between the charity management committee and the person who recorded the video? Why did you allow them to threaten him with violence? Is it acceptable for a charity to act like this and to potentially harm members of the public?

22. Why did you threaten to ban him, when he simply stood up for a Non-Sikh who Joginder had racially discriminated against on charity premises? Had he not acted in line with the spiritual teachings of Sikhism by trying to fight injustice on charity premises? Why did a charity management committee member try to start an altercation with the same person on 20th July 2016, which could have resulted in him and his 3.5-year old daughter falling down a concrete staircase, causing serious bodily harm, which was reported to the Leicester Police on 21st July 2016?

23. To date, what is your reason for ignoring the temple member’s complaints against Joginder over a 1-year period, then, their Special Delivery letter, their online petition with over 340 supporters and a video that supports their claims about Joginder acting in racist and anti-Sikh ways on charity premises? Why is he still working on charity premises as a part-time cook, when there is sufficient evidence to suggest that he is acting against the core objective of the charity?

24. By placing an advert in the ‘Des Pardes Weekly’ on page 52 on 15th July 2015, why did you bring the serious issue that you had botched up, into the public limelight, as this paper claims to reach 80% of the Panjabi community in UK and Europe, which is a population of people in the hundreds of thousands? Why do this, when you had already publically ignored the online petition for almost 3 months? What did you intend to achieve by issuing a statement which ultimately contradicts Joginder’s words and actions in the video footage, further damaging the reputation of the charity, whilst proving the complete incompetence of the committee?

25. When the temple members fully rebutted your public statement on their petition page on 15th July 2016 and after they did the same by issuing a statement in the same widely circulated ‘Des Pardes Weekly’, on pages 30-31 on 22nd July 2016, why didn’t you respond to their rebuttal, knowing that a ‘non-response’ would further damage the charity’s reputation, which it has done, as the balance of probabilities support the temple member’s claims that Joginder has acted in racist and anti-Sikh ways, on charity premises, as evidenced by the Special Delivery letter, the online petition and now the video?

26. Can you clarify the charity’s position on the key points raised in the temple member’s rebuttal of your public statement?

27. Do you agree that Non-Sikhs, especially homeless people who experience challenging life circumstances can be mentally and emotionally disturbed by being subjected to racial discrimination by Joginder, in the same way that the homeless White woman was visibly disturbed in that video? How can a charity do absolutely nothing about an employee/volunteer harming members of the public in this way? Do the spiritual teachings of Sikhism endorse such behavior? Obviously not, then why has it been allowed by the charity management on charity premises for over 1.5-years?

28. How can you justify banning the person who recorded the video, instead of banning Joginder, who has been the subject of many serious complaints related to racism and anti-Sikh behavior, over a 1.5-year period, as evidenced by temple members, the Special Delivery letter, the online petition and the recent video footage? How many complaints have you received about the person who filmed the video, over the past 6 years that he has been attending the temple?

29. If the Charity Commission allows the present charity management committee to remain in power, how can it justify being an effective regulator? Wasn’t 1.5-years enough time to resolve this matter, without making it public and damaging the reputation of the Sikh temple (charity), the reputation of Sikh temples (similar charities) in general and the reputation of the Sikh community across the world, as the video and online petition has been viewed by a worldwide audience?

30. Have the temple members been unreasonable by giving the charity management committee over 1.5-years to resolve this matter? How much time is required to tell Joginder “You’re fired for acting in racist and anti-Sikh ways on charity premises/Gurudwara premises, which is against the charity objective?”

31. The congregation made verbal complaints over a 1-year period, which you ignored. They sent a Special Delivery letter in April 2016, which you ignored. They started an online petition in April 2016, which you’ve ignored to date. They uploaded a video that supports their claims, which you ignored. They have only approached the Charity Commission AFTER all of the above and AFTER you harassed a temple member and allowed 2 non-committee members to threaten him with violence, as reported to the Leicester Police. How can the Charity Commission ignore all of this and simply let you off with a warning, after you’ve ruined the reputation of the charity and that of Sikh temples (similar charities) because of your gross negligence in handling racism and anti-Sikh behavior on charity premises? Why have you ignored the Sikh temple members, who are the people that fully fund the charity?

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