Impeached director of finance sues interim Kwantlen Student Association board.
By Matt DiMera
Recently-impeached Kwantlen Student Association (KSA) executive Balninna “Nina” Sandhu is attempting to undo the results of the Nov. 30 special general meeting (SGM) where she and 12 other directors were kicked out of office.
Sandhu, the KSA’s former director of finance, and student Gary Singh Dhaliwal filed a petition Jan. 10 in B.C. Supreme Court claiming that the SGM was invalid and seeking a court order to reinstate the impeached directors and to place 14 other current and former students and staff members back in good standing as KSA members.
As members in bad standing, the 26 are currently not allowed to run for office in the KSA or vote in KSA elections. According to the petition filed with the court, Gary Dhaliwal intends to run for office in the next KSA election.
At that Nov. 30 meeting, more than 350 students voted unanimously to remove Sandhu, Harman “Sean Birdman” Bassi, Nipun Pandey, Parminder “Bobby” Padda, Jaspinder Ghuman, Tarun Takhar, Shivinder Grewal, Money Dhaliwal, Gaven Pangly, Simmy Grewal, Kamalpreet Dha and Jagraj Hayre from their elected KSA positions.
Sandhu and Dhaliwal have also asked the court to set aside the new bylaws that were passed at the meeting and to prevent the current KSA board from holding new elections until the court case has been resolved.
The day after the SGM, Sandhu accused the meeting’s organizers of not allowing her and the other ousted board members to speak in their own defense.
“We were barred,” she explained to The Runner Dec. 1. “Ask the petitioners of that meeting why we were barred from the meeting. I’m a student. I’m an elected official. I was barred from the meeting.”
“Someone told me I wasn’t allowed in. He said you’re not allowed to get in. They wouldn’t let us register,” she said. “If I was let into the goddamn meeting, I could have said my statement.”
According to the court petition filed by Sandhu and Dhaliwal, none of the impeached board members attempted to sign in.
However, the impeached director of operations, Nipun Pandey, told The Runner Dec. 1 that he was able to register for the meeting, but claimed that he had been refused entry.
Sandhu, Pandey and former director of external affairs Bobby Padda all said at the time that their supporters had been too intimidated to attend the meeting.
The court petition also specifically mentions that all of the impeached board members and all of the students placed in bad standing are South Asian.
None of the allegations made by Dhaliwal and Sandhu have been proven in court.
The court dismissed an application Jan. 13 to expedite the case.
In a second application, heard Jan. 17, Sandhu and Dhaliwal asked for a court order to prevent the new KSA board from bargaining with their staff’s union, from signing or changing any contracts, and from calling any elections until the case had been resolved by the court.
That application was withdrawn when the KSA’s legal counsel then agreed that the new board would not take any “extraordinary actions – out of the ordinary course of business until the application or interim relief is heard on a preemptory basis.”
Sandhu did not respond to an email request for an interview before deadline.
The new KSA board has not yet filed their statement of defense.
About the Author: The Runner is owned by students and created for students. We are the premier news and culture source for students at Kwantlen Polytechnic University.
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