WELCOME TO MALAYSIAN SIKH UNION
The Sikh community in Malaysia has been in existence for more than 150 years. The Sikhs have enjoyed a glowing history in the defense of this country by laying down their lives to seek Independence for the country. The battle of Kampar, battle of Johor, and battles in Kedah during the Second World War saw thousands of young Sikhs laying down their lives so that “Malaysians” of today could live in the wisdom of Peace and Security.
The population of the Sikhs has grown from 30,000 in 1930 to 130,000 in 2011. In line with the Sikh population growth figures, our community’s socio-economic and psychosocial issues have also increased. Today we form a sizeable majority of the bottom 30% of the Indians listed as hard-core poor. Today we have many Sikh single mothers, underprivileged youths; elderly abandoned Sikhs, and academically incompetent young persons who have no direction.
The biggest issue we face as a minority is the non-recognition of the Sikhs within the government statistical demographic identification system. We are lumped as ‘Indian’ in all official documents and there exist “NO” identification as a separate ethnic group at all levels of government. A consequence of being listed under the larger “Indian” bracket is that the Sikhs have been displaced. As a result of this anomaly the only Sikhs who have been identified are the Sikh professionals and the Sikh middle class, not on account of a separate classification group but by dint of their personal achievements and apparent high profile. The Sikh poor, on the other hand are subsumed in the larger Indian group. It is thus not surprising that most Malaysians regard the Sikhs as a thriving community to be emulated by others in Malaysia, when in fact there is no basis for this; the Sikh Community has the same problems as the others but loses out on the help it can, and should, get from the Government. After many representations and discussions, the government of Malaysia in the on going census 2010 exercise did finally add the Sikhs as an independent group for the first time. This will help us to exactly know our strengths and effectively address our priorities.
The Malaysian Sikh Union has been actively pursuing the agenda of Sikh Unity in the country for the betterment of the Sikh community. The Malaysian Sikh Union’s activity has been confined to several areas through working with its branches. Specifically MSU has undertaken projects on the following fronts: