Singapore's Deputy PM Lawrence Wong Praises Sikhs’ Contribution
At the Sikh Advisory Board (SAB)
75th Anniversary Celebration Dinner
Los Angeles, July 31, 2023
NRIpress.club/Ramesh/ A.Gary Singh
The Sikh community in Singapore, while being small in numbers, has made significant contributions to the nation’s development in various fields. Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong acknowledged the community’s outstanding achievements in areas such as civil service, uniformed services, judiciary, business, sports, and more. Despite their numbers, the Sikh community has managed to maintain their unique cultural and religious identities.
One of the key pillars in the Sikh community’s success in Singapore is the Sikh Advisory Board (SAB). The board has played a critical role in providing the government with guidance on matters concerning the Sikh community, ranging from religion to customs and welfare. The government places high value on the advice of the Board, respecting its role in mediating disputes related to employment practices to protect Sikh religious practices. The board’s candid, open, and forthcoming approach has helped to maintain a harmonious relationship between the community and the government.
Despite their achievements, the Sikh community has not forgotten the importance of charity and education. The Sikh Welfare Council provides a wide range of services to those in need, and the Singapore Sikh Education Foundation promotes the teaching of Punjabi, an officially recognized second language in Singapore schools.
Sikh Community’s History in Singapore
The Sikh community’s history in Singapore can be traced back to the late 19th century when they were brought by the British colonial government to form a police contingent. Over the years, the Sikh community has grown, now numbering around 13,000, and is fully integrated into Singaporean society. This integration serves as a testament to the community’s resilience and adaptability, and their significant contributions to Singapore’s development.
In conclusion, the Deputy Prime Minister’s speech at the 75th anniversary celebration dinner of the Sikh Advisory Board underscored the Sikh community’s significant contributions to Singapore. Despite being small in numbers, their achievements in various fields, their commitment to social welfare, and their efforts to maintain their cultural and religious identities make them an integral part of Singapore’s diverse society.