aka Gurdwara Khalsa Darbar of South Jersey


    The Khalsa Darbar of South Jersey, Inc. was established on November 3, 1997. The term Darbar, Khalsa Darbar or Gurdwara Khalsa Darbar of South Jersey shall mean Khalsa Darbar of South Jersey, Inc. as mentioned above, where ever it appears.  Khalsa Darbar is a non-profit religious organization.

1.    Aims and Objectives of the Khalsa Darbar:

2.     Founding Members/Permanent Trustees:
        These are the individuals actively involved in the establishment and development of the Darbar. They are the permanent trustees of the Darbar. The term trustee/s will mean permanent trustee/s where ever it appears in the by laws. If a trustee becomes unavailable (expires, moves out of area, and looses membership for non-payment of dues) he or she will be replaced from the list of new members on first come first serve basis. Either a trustee or his/her spouse will be equivalent for all the responsibilities and privileges of a trustee. Collectively the trustees will be referred as Board of Trustees (BOT) and have the following structure:
Structure of Board of Trustees:
        The trustees will be responsible for major policy and long term planning of the objectives and activities of the Darbar; immovable property including all the funds of the Darbar, assure that immovable property of the society is not sold or altered without a two-third majority of the trustees.
3.     New Members: For an individual to become a member of the Darbar he or she should have the following qualifications:
bulletBe a resident of Burlington City, Burlington Township, Willingboro, Florence, Edgewater Park, or Roebling Township (New Jersey) for the last 2 years.
bulletThisgeographical limit is final and cannot be changed at any time.
bulletProduce proof of residency with drivers’ license, and a utility bill in his name.
bullet Be a member on the mailing list of the Darbar for the last 2 years, and be legal resident of the United States. bullet Pay initial membership fee of $1125.00. The founding members’ last date for payment of this amount is Jan. 25, 1998. bullet Believe in Sikh religion. Any person irrespective of caste, color, creed, or national origin who believes in the teachings of the Ten Gurus, accepts Guru Granth Sahib as the last Guru of the Sikhs, agrees with the aims and objectives of the Darbar, is 18 years of age or above, and does not believe in any other religion is eligible to apply for membership. Following compliance with above requirements new member application will be considered and processed by the trustees only. bullet Trustees will hold meetings several times a year as needed to process these applications. bullet Membership will be open all year. bullet * Amendments made in BOT meeting on April 29, 2001
bulletThe conditions layed down in item 3 (as above) for new members of the constituiton are waived for children of the trustees' to become permanent members. To Qualify, the following must be met:
4.    Annual Membership Fee:
        Annual membership fee of $225.00 will be due by October 31st of each year. A late fee of $50.00 will be charged if fee is not received by the above due date. In this case if total fee of $275.00 is not received by Nov. 30th the membership will not be renewed.
5.    Mailing List:
        Annual fee of $10 is required to be on the mailing list. There is no geographical limit to be a member on the mailing list within the USA.
6.    Executive Committee:
        Executive Committee shall consist of total five members. They are the President, Secretary, Treasurer and two Executive Committee (EC) members. While being a member of the executive committee he or she must not use alcohol, tobacco or drugs (not prescribed by a physician).  All members of the executive must be ‘Saabat Soorat’ or commit to be and remain as such during their tenure as a member. This requirement cannot be waived or modified.  In addition to the five members, the Chairman, BOT will be ex-officio member and may participate  in EC meetings as a non-voting member.

        The above requirement of being Saabat Soorat Sikh to be member of the executive committee is mandatory and cannot be changed under any circumstances. This is to conform that Sikh rehat maryada is not violated to any extent, at anytime.

        If a member of the executive committee starts using alcohol, tobacco, or drugs as explained above, the remaining Executive Committee members will hold a special meeting with him/her giving the individual a chance to explain the situation. If this accusation is held true, the EC will have the privilege to give a one-time warning to quit the practice. On repeat occurrence of the unacceptable practice, the EC will refer the matter to Board of Trustees for final action under the bylaws of Khalsa Darbar.

        The Executive Committee is elected for a period of one year.  On completion of one year the EC member can not hold any elected office for a period of one year.

7.    Election  of  Executive  Committee:
        The Honorary Election Committee shall complete the election process by 3rd Sunday of December. A member may nominate as many persons as one may wish but not more than one person for the same position of Executive Committee.

        If more than one nomination is received for any post then election for that post will be held as follows:

        The process of Election shall be completed by Honorary Election Committee (HEC) under the guidelines of Board of Trustees.

        The newly elected Executive Committee shall assume the charge by second Sunday of January of the following year.

        Nominee and the nominator both must be present at the time of the election. Each of these must produce proof of residency, and two proofs of identification.

This requirement cannot be waived.


8.    Responsibilities of the Executive Committee:
            The Executive committee shall perform all its functions in accordance with the Sikh Rehat Maryada (SGPC-Amritsar) and the Bylaws of the Gurdwara Khalsa Darbar. The Executive Committee shall consult the Trustee Board from time to time as and when needed. The Executive Committee on behalf of the Gurdwara

            Khalsa Darbar can make contribution and donations to any charitable cause, religious, educational and humanitarian grounds up to the limits authorized by Board of Trustees in its Annual Budget. Any Contribution in excess of the limit shall be reviewed case by case and decided by the Board of Trustees.

            The executive committee shall hold at least 4 meetings during the calendar year, and may hold additional meetings as needed.  The Executive Committee Secretary after consulting with President will inform the Executive Committee members and the Chairperson, BOT in writing about the meeting including agenda at least one week in advance.

            Two or more members of the Executive Committee may call an emergency meeting of the executive committee.  EC President or Secretary must be present in such meetings.  The BOT Chairperson may or may not be present in all EC meetings as an ex-officio non-voting member.

            The President (or Secretary in the absence of President) shall preside over all functions of the Darbar and exercise control and supervision over the day to day function of the Darbar. The presence of three members of the executive committee shall constitute the required quorum for the meetings.

            The secretary in consultation and harmony with the President will manage the Stage of the Gurdwara in Diwan.  In case the Secretary is not present or available, then following order will follow to mange the Stage:

      1. 1) President, EC
      2. 2) Chairperson, BOT
      3. 3) Secretary, BOT
      4. 4) Any member of the EC as authorized in writing by the Secretary, EC

            The secretary shall assist the president in all function of the Darbar and assume charge of the duties and functions of the president in his absence. The secretary shall be responsible for maintenance of all the records, documents, registers, and other official papers of the Darbar. He shall keep records of the meetings of the executive committee and the general body. He will prepare agenda of the meetings, progress reports in consultation with the president. He shall keep the general body informed of the activities of the Darbar. All correspondence to the general body shall have the signature of the secretary or the president.

9.    The Treasurer:
The treasurer shall collect dues, keep accounts of all the receipts and expenses, deposit all funds of the Darbar in such a bank or banks as designated by the executive committee. All checks must have two signatures, one of the treasurer and second of either the president or the secretary. In the absence of the treasurer the president and the secretary together have the authority to sign checks. He shall prepare the budget estimate in consultation with trustees and executive committee for the next calendar year. Any member may have access to the financial records of the Darbar.
10.    Budget and Finance:
        The financial year will be from Jan.1, to Dec. 31 each year. A copy of the audited annual financial report will be made available to the general body members upon request and shall be posted at the premises for a period of two weeks following the second general body meeting.

        Annual budget prepared by the treasurer in consultation with the trustees and the executive committee shall be presented to the general body meeting.

11.     The Records:
        All the records and registers of Gurdwara Khalsa Darbar shall be brought to date on the day the new Executive Committee/BOT officials are sworn in.

        The Board of Trustees shall appoint for one year a two-member audit committee to audit each income and expense report for the financial year. The appointees need not be members of Khalsa Darbar.  The audit committee shall submit the audit report to the Board of Trustees. Any trustee may request access to the audit report by making a written request to the Secretary, BOT.

12.    Functions of the Trustees:
        If the trustees believe that the Executive committee is not performing its function as required by the Sikh Principles and by the constitution of the Gurdwara Khalsa Darbar, or that the committee has become dysfunctional, they may take a vote and dissolve the Executive Committee by 51% majority. In such case Board of Trustees will appoint two qualified Sewadars  (Excluding the members of the dissolved committee and those  who have just served one year in any capacity as member of Executive Committee) to carry out functions of the Khalsa Darbar till a new committee is sworn in.  The Board of Trustees will appoint Election within four  weeks of dissolution of the Executive Committee. The election for the new committee will be held within 3 months of the dissolution of the Executive Committee.
13.    Conflict Resolution Committee:
        The trustees will appoint five-member conflict resolution committee from the general body. Such a committee will function for one year. At the end of one year the general body may chose to renew one or more members as needed. If this committee cannot be formed unanimously then a procedure similar to election of executive committee will be followed. This committee will become activated at the request of any member of the general body.
14.    General Body:
        General Body shall consist of all the members at that time. This includes trustees and new members. There will be two general body meetings per year. Mailing list members are not members of the general body. Seven individuals of the general body can request a general body meeting at any time by giving a written notice to Chairperson, BOT. The Chairperson will be required to hold such meeting within 30 days following the request. The general body will be sent written notice of such meeting with the disclosure of agenda of such meeting, no less than two weeks in advance. The members present will constitute the quorum.
Structure of General Body.
  • Head official: Chairperson of Board of Trustees.
  • Main body: All trustees and members in good standing.
  • 15.    The executive committee or any of its members cannot issue sponsorship for visitor or immigration visa to any person or group of persons without written
             approval of the trustees.
    Only the trustees shall be empowered to make changes or amend constitution with two-third majority.

    16.    The annual meeting of the general body shall be held by last Sunday of November each year.

            All meetings of the General Body will be presided over by the Chairperson of BOT.  In his/her absence the following order will follow:

            Secretary of the Board of Trustee will record the minutes in writing. Use of audio/video equipment is not allowed for such purposes. The minutes of these    meetings shall be accessible to all the members. 17.    Suggestions:

            Suggestions must be submitted in writing. These may be anonymous. Executive committee shall discuss these suggestion at the next scheduled meeting and inform the suggestor of their decision within two weeks following the meeting.

    18.    Cultural Meetings:

            The expenses of these meeting will not be the responsibility of Khalsa Darbar. The Darbar will promote participation in sports and extra-cirricular activities in co-ordination with other Sikh organizations.
    19.    Marriage Ceremony:
            No fee is required for marriage ceremony. The couple may make donation at their own will.
    20.    Weekly Gurduwara Routine:
            It will include Kirtan by children, Katha, and Kirtan by ragi jatha, or any combination of these.
    21.    The Budget:
            The treasurer will be present next year’s budget at the annual meeting of the general body. The treasurer shall prepare the annual budget of the Darbar, in consultation with the executive committee and trustees.

    22.    General:

            Certain cases and situations may arise from time to time with regards to which specific provisions do not exist in this text. Such cases or situations shall be dealt in accordance with the generally accepted principals. In case of conflict the trustees with majority vote will make final decision. The trustees are authorized to fill any vacancies in the executive committee for the remaining term or till elections are held which ever comes first.

            No part of the net earning of the Darbar shall ensure to the benefit of or be distribute to its members or officers or other private individuals; except that the Darbar shall be empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered, or make distributions provided that such payments or distributions are in furtherance of the purposes of the Darbar.

            Upon the dissolution of the Darbar, the executive committee and the trustees shall, after paying all the liabilities and compensation for services rendered, dispose of all the assets of Darbar exclusively for the society,  in such manner, and to such organization or organizations, organized and operated solely and exclusively for religious purposes under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954.

    Structure of the Board of Trustees: Eligibility for Chairperson: Term of Service:

    Eligibility for Secretary of Board of Trustees:

    Term of Service: Tenure:
    Function of Chairperson/Secretary/Board of Trustees:
    bullet Fund Raising Sub-committee:
    bullet Sangat Welfare Sub-committee:
    bullet Sikh Youth Awareness Sub-committee:
    bullet Note:   Number of members in all such sub-committees shall be decided by the BOT
    bullet Sports & Sikh History Seminars:
    bullet Honorary Election Committee (HEC):
    bullet Function:
    bulletThe sole function of HEC is to have a fair Election for following Post:
    1) Executive Committee
    2) Chairperson of the Board of Trustees
    3) Secretary to Board of Trustees
    bullet The election of the Executive Committee shall be completed by 3rd Sunday of December. bullet The election of Chairperson and Secretary, Board of Trustees shall be completed by last Sunday of March. bullet Term: bullet Election Process and Guidelines: bullet The HEC shall declare the election results the same day. bullet NOTE 23.    The executive committee members or the trustees will not be personally responsible for any liabilities while performing their duties for the Darbar.

    24.    The provisions of the bylaws may be amended by two-third majority of the members of the Board of Trustee’s when and where the need arises.

    25.    Disciplinary Action/Removal of  Board of Trustees Member:

    bullet The Chairperson will announce the result of the voting as the decision of the Board of Trustees.

    bullet Once approved by the majority of BOT members present, the expulsion shall be effective immediately.  The member once removed may not re-apply for membership for a period of five years after which time his/her application shall be treated like that of a new member.

    26.  Legal Support:

    In case the members/trustees of Khalsa Darbar, while performing duties of and/or representing Khalsa Darbar  in any activity,  are challenged in a court of law, the Khalsa Darbar funds shall be used for their legal defense and to fulfil legal obligations.
    This revised constitution was approved by a unanimous vote by members of the Board of Trustees on January 02, 2000 and became effective the

     same day.

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