Charity Commission appoints interim manager to Sikh temple charity

The regulator opened a statutory inquiry into the Central Gurdwara (British Isles) London Khalsa Jatha in 2015 because of various concerns

Central Gurdwara
Central Gurdwara

The Charity Commission has appointed an interim manager to a Sikh temple in west London amid concerns that include private benefit accruing to one of its trustees.

In 2015, the regulator opened a statutory inquiry into the Central Gurdwara (British Isles) London Khalsa Jatha because of concerns that included possible private trustee benefit and a dispute between trustees that resulted in them not sharing financial and management information necessary to enable them to run the charity properly.

When it announced the inquiry, the regulator said it had given the charity, which operates a temple in Shepherd’s Bush and has objects including the advancement of the Sikh religion and the advancement of education and social welfare, an action plan in February 2014 with which the charity had failed to fully comply.

The commission said in 2015 that further concerns had been raised about the management of properties owned and rented by the charity, including allegations that there had been private benefit to a trustee whose company was responsible for renovating the charity’s properties.

The regulator said in a statement yesterday that it had appointed Tom Murdoch of the law firm Stone King as interim manager to determine the membership of the charity. It said the charity’s trustees would remain responsible for the day-to-day management of the charity, including its financial management.

According to the charity’s entry on the Charity Commission’s online register, the Central Gurdwara has not filed accounts for 2014 or 2015, with the 2014 accounts being more than 450 days overdue.

Its most recently available accounts on the commission’s register, for 2013, show that it had an income of £171,780 and an expenditure of £136,041 during the year.

The charity, which says on its website that it is the oldest established place of Sikh worship in Europe, was established in 1908.

The charity did not respond to a request for comment from Third Sector on Tuesday morning.

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