Towards the end of the 19th Century, there were a few Sikhs in the Police and Infantry stationed in Lahad Datu. They acquired a piece of land about 1 1/2 acres in size from the British North Borneo Company in 1898. At a later date, the size of this land was reduced to 0.906 acres. The first Gurdwara Sahib building, a wooden structure was built in 1901. In 1925, a new double storey wooden building was constructed. This Gurdwara Sahib was repaired at various times and continued to be used until June 1999. By this time the condition of the building had deteriorated and being unsafe, it had to be demolished.
In June 1999, the Management Committee rented a double storey house at RM300.00 a month and converted it for use as a Gurdwara Sahib. In early 2002, the landlord told the Gurdwara Committee to vacate the premises. Finally in June 2002, a 'ormela was held in this temporary Gurdwara Sahib building for the last time. After theas, the Holy Book, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, was respectfully taken to the Gurdwara Sahib Sandakan. The Holy Book will be kept in Sandakan until the new Gurdwara Sahib building in Lahad Datu is completed. There are presently about 12 Sikh families who reside in Lahad Datu.
The Management Committee comprises of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Assistant Secretary, Treasurer and four committee members. (Note: Plans for the new double storey Gurdwara Sahib building have been approved by the relevant authorities. The new building is expected to cost approximately RM850,000.00 out of which RM80,000.00 has been donated by the State Government. Construction of the new Gurdwara Sahib building commenced in June 2003 and is expected to be completed by mid 2004.)
Sikh Gurudwaras in Malaysia&Singapore
Saran Singh Sidhu AMN,PNM,FRNS
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