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Sikhs in US helping Katrina victims

Amritsar, September 06, 2005
Sikhs living in the United States have extended a helping hand to victims of Hurricane Katrina.

In a gesture unheard of in the West, the Sikhs have thronged their shrines to pray for the wellbeing of Katrina victims and have launched a fund raising campaign in the community.

According to Dr.Pritpal Singh, the coordinator of the American Gurdawara Parbhandak Committee, "We have mobilized all our resources to share the grief of Katrina victims. This is the worst natural disaster in American history and contribution by Sikh community in this hour of crisis would be as well a history".

Talking to ANI over telephone from the USA, Dr.Singh said that the Sikh community has so far dispatched two truckloads of grocery items, including juice, water and eatables for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. He also said that the gurdawaras of Houston and Dallas have been organizing langars or community kitchens for victims.

The organizers, including Dr.Singh and Jaswant Singh Hooti vice president AGPC, are scheduled to visit Banson to distribute an aid of 20,000 dollars and other material help.

Meanwhile, reports reaching here said that the gurdwara in New Orleans is submerged and some 50 Sikh families from New Orleans and the outlying areas have been evacuated and are living in temporary homes.

The state government has assured the AGPC that arrangements will be made to lift Guru Granth Sahib by helicopter to a safer place soon.

"Biloxi city in Misissippi is also badly affected and we expect Sikhs to have been living there too. I will have a better idea of the situation in that area and Alabama soon and we will extend our relief work accordingly," Sumir Kaur, spokeswoman of United Sikhs Organization said.

The Delhi Gurdawara Parbhandak Committee in coordination with AGPC would organize an "Ardaas Diwas( Prayer Day) in Gurdawara Bangla Sahib New Delhi on September 11 evening.

Paramjit Singh Sarna, the president of the Delhi Gurdwara Management Committee (DGMC), said that invitations have been sent to the U.S. Embassy in Delhi and their officials to participate in the prayers. (ANI)


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