Sikh community and RCMP look for solutions to gang violence in B.C.

Published: June 26, 2013

Taranjit Singh Dhugga, left, representing Surrey’s Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara, and Gunvir Khosa, the youth representative from New Westminster’s Gurdwara Sahib Sukh Sagar, took part in an anti-gang summit Wednesday in Chilliwack. Larissa Cahute/PNG

LARISSA CAHUTE 
VANCOUVER DESI

Stories of being able to leave your front door unlocked seem like folklore to New Westminster’s Gunvir Khosa.

The 20-year-old Douglas College student has only heard of those far-off times from his father, when he’d talk about his childhood and feeling safe in his neighbourhood.

“Nowadays you can’t do that — being scared that you might get hit by a bullet,” said Khosa.

Like on Sunday, when 25-year-old Harpreet Chahal was shot dead in a brazen daylight shooting in Abbotsford.

“It’s stuff like that that scares you, but at the same time you’ve got to know when to … take a stand,” said Khosa.

It was an accumulation of such incidents that led the Lower Mainland Sikh community to approach the RCMP six months ago, looking for a way to prevent ongoing gang violence.

On Wednesday their efforts came to fruition as 30 representatives from 11 temples, including Khosa from New Westminster’s Sahib Sukh Sagar temple, met with RCMP and the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit-B.C.(CFSEU-BC) for an anti-gang summit in Chilliwack.

The summit is part of a Kwantlen University research project on local gang violence, led by Dr. Gira Bhatt, director of Acting Together — Community University Research Alliance, which received a federal grant four years ago.

“It’s a local issue, local solution, local community,” Bhatt said. “We cannot import our solutions from California or from England. Our demographics are different, our cultural issues are different.”

The summit marked another step in her research, fielding suggestions from the community.

“There are choices that you can make that will lead you in the right direction,” said Khosa, adding that it was sports and a circle of positive friendships that kept him out of trouble.

Taranjit Singh Dhugga with Surrey’s Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara, suggested the solution starts with parenting to keep youth away from drugs and gangs.

Police hope these insights will lead to an action plan to roll out in all communities, because it’s not only a South Asian problem, as most gang-related murder victims in B.C. are Caucasian.

“I feel very optimistic that we’re going to see a best practice come out of this,” said CFSEU-BC Chief Officer Dan Malo. “We cannot look at gang violence as a situation that we can’t conquer.”

The summit came to a close Wednesday evening and Bhatt’s research team is expected to comb through the findings and come up with an action plan.

lcahute@theprovince.com
twitter.com/larissacahute


Tags: , , , , , , ,





Featured

attack on Parliament Hill

Soldier, gunman who died in Ottawa rampage identified (w/photos, video) [updated]

ANDREW DUFFY OTTAWA CITIZEN Updates at 5:10 p.m. Soldier killed in War Memorial confirmed as Cpl. Nathan Cirillo Suspect, reportedly Canadian-born Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, killed in Centre Block shootout Police call situation…
Continue Reading »

Parliament gunman shot

Shaken Surrey MPs Jasbir Sandhu, Jinny Sims calling from scene of Parliament shooting (w/photos, video)

TOM ZYTARUK SURREY NOW OTTAWA — Surrey MPs Jasbir Sandhu, Jinny Sims and their New Democrat colleagues were in a party caucus meeting in Ottawa…
Continue Reading »

LIBERTY MEDAL

Stephen Harper cancels Malala Yousafzai citizenship ceremony in light of Ottawa shooting

THE CANADIAN PRESS TORONTO – Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s office says two scheduled events today in Toronto with Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai have…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Parliament hill

Narendra Modi condemns ‘extremely disturbing’ Ottawa shootout

IANS New Delhi – Prime Minister Narendra Modi described Wednesday’s shootout near the Canadian parliament in Ottawa as “extremely disturbing”. “News of the attack in…
Continue Reading »

attack on Parliament Hill

Soldier, gunman who died in Ottawa rampage identified (w/photos, video) [updated]

ANDREW DUFFY OTTAWA CITIZEN Updates at 5:10 p.m. Soldier killed in War Memorial confirmed as Cpl. Nathan Cirillo Suspect, reportedly Canadian-born Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, killed in Centre Block shootout Police call situation…
Continue Reading »

Parliament gunman shot

Shaken Surrey MPs Jasbir Sandhu, Jinny Sims calling from scene of Parliament shooting (w/photos, video)

TOM ZYTARUK SURREY NOW OTTAWA — Surrey MPs Jasbir Sandhu, Jinny Sims and their New Democrat colleagues were in a party caucus meeting in Ottawa…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

Vancouver-Surrey-Festival-India

Diwali celebrations in Vancouver and Surrey

DiwaliFest celebrates its 11th anniversary from Oct. 17 to 26 at various sites in Surrey and Vancouver. Diwali Celebration Friday, Oct. 24 at Firehall Centre…
Continue Reading »

Facebook photo showing Martin Rouleau

Canada is Losing the Values War

UJJAL DOSANJH SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI The dreaded happened in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, a quiet historic town in Quebec. Many years ago I stayed there for a…
Continue Reading »

Butter Chicken

Light up Diwali with this delicious dinner: Butter Chicken, Basmati Rice with Peas, Chickpea Masala and Gulab Jamun

Indian festival is a fine reason for a feast BAL ARNESON POSTMEDIA NEWS Diwali is India’s biggest festival. People light candles and divas (small Indian…
Continue Reading »

INDIA-WILDLIFE-ELEPHANT

Heartbreaking photos of two elephants electrocuted in India

IANS Siliguri – Two elephants, including a female, were electrocuted in West Bengal’s Darjeeling district Saturday, an official said. The tuskers were found in a…
Continue Reading »

Aman Grewal

Gallery: Army officer’s wife wins Mrs. India Worldwide pageant

IANS New Delhi – Aman Grewal, wife of an army officer, was declared the winner of Haut.Monde Mrs.India Worldwide 2014 here. Grewal, who hails from…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Jackie Chan

First India-China joint venture film starring Jackie Chan launched

HINDUSTAN TIMES Chinese action star Jackie Chan will star in the first Sino-India joint film production slated to go on the floors in the coming…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood

Saif Ali Khan poses with pants down

IANS New Delhi – Actor-producer Saif Ali Khan was caught and clicked with his pants down while shooting for his new film “Happy Ending”. As…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood

Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt says ‘Going Home’ a special short film

IANS Mumbai – If the masses loved her in movies like “Highway” and “Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania”, Alia Bhatt has again won many a heart….
Continue Reading »