June 23, 2016 | By Parmjeet Singh
London: The EU referendum will take place in the UK today (23rd June, 2016). It is a decision of significant importance to the country and will affect us all in not only the short term but also impact on future generations. Sikh Council UK is advising all UK voters to vote to Remain in the EU.
In the lead up to the referendum the Sikh Council UK has supported and encouraged debate within the Sikh community so that both sides of the debate are considered including from a Sikh specific perspective in order for individual voters to make informed choices. Sikh Council UK representatives have assisted in arranging visits to Gurdwaras by leading politicians and arranged interviewees for Sikh media to engage the community on the issues.
Current polling and commentary suggests the result is likely to be extremely close. Whilst it would not be usual for us to publicise support for any one side of an argument in a national election, the vote will determine the destiny of this country and the Sikh Council UK is in a position to set out our recommendation having taken account of the arguments on both sides and balancing what is in the longer term interest of our country and the Sikh community in the UK and the EU.
Whilst there are many legitimate concerns with the EU and its institutions and the ongoing impact on the UK of continued membership of the EU, these need to be balanced with the wider political, economic, security and human rights considerations including aspirations for religious freedoms and campaigns for justice and rights for Sikhs across the EU.
On balance the Sikh Council UK recommends a vote for the UK to remain a part of the EU. In our view the UK is a force for good in the EU and can be at the forefront of shaping the future for the betterment of Sikh and other communities across the European continent.
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