KHĀLSĀ DĪWĀN MALAYA, a religious organization of Sikhs in Malaysia, was established on 27 December 1903 at Taiping (4º-51'N, 100º-44'E) at a dīvān at the gurdwārā of the Malaya State Guides celebrating the birth anniversary of Gurū Gobind Siṅgh. The Khālsā Dīwān was assigned to promoting Sikh religion, managing Sikh temples or gurdwārās in Malaya, securing the educational advancement of the Sikh youth and to providing facilities for the teaching of Punjabi language. An executive committee consisting of 21 members from different towns from Alor Star (6º-07'N, 100º-22'E) in the north to Kuala Lumpur (3º-09'N, 101- 43'E) in the south was elected. The members of the Khālsā Dīwān were expected to be amritdhārī Sikhs maintaining the five symbols of the Khālsā and subscribing to the tenets of the faith. A missionary fund was opened to provide for a cadre of preachers and scripture-readers. Sikh scholars and lecturers were invited from India to address the religious dīvāns and a series of tracts and pamphlets on Sikhism was launched. In 1925, the Dīwān obtained legal recognition for Sikh marriages solemnized under the Indian Anand Marriage Act. In 1933 was convened a Sikh women's conference which led to the establishment of the Malaya Istri Satsaṅg. On 24 September 1950, Gurū Nānak Institution, a regular school with admission open to all communities, was started in Ipoh. The Khālsā Dīwān Malaya was affiliated to the Chief Khālsā Diwān of Amritsar. It also retained its interest in the religious and political developments in the Punjab, which were often discussed at its periodical conferences. Differences of opinion on the questions of affiliation with the moderate Chief Khālsā Dīwān and the lukewarm attitude of the executive of the Khālsā Dīwān Malaya towards the Kamagata Maru sufferers led to the establishment of a separate Khālsā Dīwān at Selangor in January 1918. The rift was complete during the annual Sikh conference held jointly by the two Dīwāns in 1919 at Penang. The dissident groups strongly disapproved of the Chief Khālsā Dīwān's pro-government views on the Jalliāṅvālā Bāgh massacre and opposed the executive's proposal to remit its surplus funds to that Dīwān. Kalgīdhar Dīwān Malaya as a parallel central body was established in place of the Khālsā Dīwān Selangor. Annual conferences continued to be held jointly till 1927, but repeated efforts to reunite the two Dīwāns proved abortive.

Mehervān Siṅgh Singapore