The Consul General of India Mr. N. Parthasarathi visited New Mexico February 13 thru 16, 2012. He was accompanied byDeputy Consul General Kumar Tuhin. The visiting dignitaries were welcomed by the Sikh Dharma community in Espanola, New Mexico. There were several events and receptions in Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Espanola where the Consul General met with local Indian community and the Sikh Dharma community. The Ambassador of Sikh Dharma, Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh Khalsa, who is also the son-in-law of Yogi Bhajan, played the gracious host to the guests.
At a dinner meeting hosted by Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh Khalsa and Mr. Pawan Singh Dhindsa in Albuquerque, Consul General Parthasarathi assured the Sikh community of full cooperation and help by his consulate office in San Francisco and said that his main goal was to reach out to the entire Indian and Sikh American community and do whatever possible he could as the new Consul General of America. He assured the Sikh Ambassador and Mr. Dhindsa, a prominent Indian American community activist in New Mexico, that his office was working on clearing all the pending issues with visas for the Sikh community.
Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh Khalsa and Mr. Dhindsa conveyed to the Consul General of the various issues affecting the Sikh community with respect to mistaken identity, racial discrimination, and prejudice towards the Sikh community in California and the entire United States.
The Consul General was also briefed about the discriminatory attitude of the Indian missions in granting visas to Indian Americans, especially Sikhs and Muslims.Many believe India is perhaps the only country that discriminates against its own people.
The Consul General congratulated Mr. Dhindsa and Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh on the achievements of Yogi Bhajan Ji. Yogi Ji came to USA in the early 1970s and founded the Sikh Dharma community across the United States, particularly in New Mexico.
The visiting diplomat was visibly impressed with what he saw when he visited the community in Espanola, New Mexico. He also visited the Gurdwara and the business offices of SikhNet, Akal Security, and other businesses in New Mexico. Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh shared the story of how Siri Singh Sahib Bhai Sahib Harbhajan Singh Khalsa Yogiji came to America and how he influenced the lives of so many people and started the family businesses which are supporting the community and its activities.
The Consul General also talked about the Gadar Movement and assured Mr. Dhindsa and Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh that he and his office would celebrate the event’s 100 year celebration in 2013 and wouldl participate with much fervor. He said he would give maximum cooperation to all the organizations celebrating the event.
The Consul General asked Bhai Sahib Satpal Singh Khalsa to continue to promote the organization and community set up by Yogi Bhajan and offered full cooperation from his office. Siri Singh Sahib “Yogi Bhajan” brought Kundalini Yoga and Sikh Dharma to the United States in the late 1960s and early 70s. In his later years, the Siri Singh Sahib made New Mexico his primary home and left for his heavenly abode in October 2004 at Espanola.
Many Kundalini Yoga students from around the world adopted the Sikh faith due to the outreach of Siri Singh Sahib. It was through his efforts that Sikh Dharma was officially recognized as a religion in the United States in 1971.
Members from the American Sikh community founded by Siri Singh Sahib in the West welcomed the Consul General to New Mexico. These included Daya Singh Khalsa, CEO and President of Akal Security; MSS Hari Jiwan Singh Khalsa, Chief of Protocol; Bhai Sahiba Bibiji Inderjit Kaur (wife of Siri Singh Sahib), Siri Sikdar Sahiba and many other community members and officers of the Sikh Dharma community and businesses.