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On June 4, 1984, the Government of India launched a military assault (“Operation Blue Star”) on Sri Darbar Sahib (commonly known as the Golden Temple) in Amritsar India. This date was chosen at a time when thousands of Sikh pilgrims had gathered to commemorate the martyrdom of the fifth Guru, Guru Arjan Sahib Ji. Thirty-eight other Sikh Gurdwaras across Punjab were also attacked. Thousands of innocent Sikhs – men, women, and children – were killed. The highest seat of Sikh temporal authority, Sri Akal Takhat Sahib, was reduced to rubble. The Sikh Reference Library, containing countless historical manuscripts and documents was left in ashes. A news blackout was issued and no media were permitted in or out of Punjab, India, where the majority of the Sikh population resides.
The World Sikh Organization was formed in 1984, following the above events, by like minded Sikhs around the world, to provide an effective, credible voice to represent Sikh interests on the world stage.
The World Sikh Organization of Canada was registered in Canada on November 23, 1984. Some of the goals laid out in the WSO Canada Charter are as follows:
“To work for the promotion of the ideals of universal brotherhood, peace, justice, freedom of worship and speech, respect for cultural diversity and human dignity for all, without any distinction as per the instruments and covenants of the United Nations Organization.”
The first inaugural convention of the WSO Canada was held on December 1, 1984.
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