September 18, 2014 | By Parmjeet Singh
London, UK: The National Sikh Convention is expected to attract 10,000 delegates over three days – making it the biggest party conference in the UK.
The convention, will take place at the Guru Nanak Gurdwara, Sedgley Street (off Duncan Street), Wolverhampton, WV2 4AJ between Friday 19 September and 21 September.
The event is organised by the Sikh Federation (UK), the one and only Sikh political party. It was established over a decade ago to give the Sikh community a stronger political voice and protect and promote the interests of UK Sikhs.
The convention will set and debate the Sikh Manifesto – the vision for British Sikhs in the next Parliament. It will also reflect on the outcome of the Scottish Referendum that will be known as the Convention commences.
Bhai Amrik Singh, Chair of the Sikh Federation (UK) said:
‘We eagerly await the outcome of the Scottish Referendum and will reflect on the implications at our Convention. A narrow no vote looks likely, but it will still mean big changes across the UK.’
‘Interestingly a yes vote may well mean the Scottish Government would be the first government to officially recognise and support the re-establishment of an independent Sikh State.’
‘Alex Salmond has at a previous Sikh Federation (UK) Convention and at an event we organised in the UK Parliament given his backing to self determination and a sovereign Sikh State.’
‘Irrespective of the outcome in Scotland the Sikh vote will be significant at the General Election next year. Therefore, the Sikh Manifesto setting out our demands is important to all the main political parties.’
2014 has been a significant year for the British Sikh community following the revelations of British involvement in the June 1984 massacre at the Sikhs’ holiest shrine in Amritsar. It is widely accepted in the Sikh community that the review in January led by the Cabinet Secretary and requested by David Cameron has proved insufficient.
The two main political parties realise they need to decide what if any commitment they are prepared to make. It may prove decisive in terms of the Sikh vote if Labour announces it will ensure an independent public inquiry into events 30 years ago if they come to power. On the other hand the Conservatives may be preparing to announce a further inquiry later this month.
The Sikh Manifesto will call for:
The convention will also:
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