More questions about temple finances The outgoing president of the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, Balwant Singh Gill, and his fellow board members approved gifts of $500,000 and $20,000 to two other Surrey Sikh temples the year before the Scott Road gurdawara recorded a $450,000 deficit. The transactions are disclosed in the Guru Nanak temple's financial report filed with the Canada Revenue Agency. During the 2008 fiscal year, Gill and the other directors of the Guru Nanak temple approved a $500,000 donation to the Cloverdale Sikh Society, which operates a temple in leased space in a shopping mall at 5748 175 St. They also gave $20,000 to the Bear Creek Punjab Cultural Society, which holds services at the Bear Creek Community Hall at 8580 132 St. Both societies are registered charities. Officials of both the Cloverdale and Bear Creek societies were not immediately able to say what the money was intended for when contacted by The Leader. It is not clear whether the donations were made before or after the incumbents slate led by Gill was defeated by the upstart Surrey Youth slate in the 2008 elections at the Scott Road temple. The youth slate did not take power that year because Gill and his supporters launched a legal challenge accusing the winning slate of using improperly filled-out nomination forms. A judge gave the two rival groups a choice between a drawn-out and expensive court fight or holding another election at the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple in 2009. They opted for the election, which saw the Youth Slate repeat its win with an even larger share of the vote. The victors said it was during the transition meeting on Friday (Jan. 1) that Gill and the departing temple treasurer revealed the gurdawara was about $450,000 in debt, the result of taking out a $200,000 loan, a $150,000 line of credit and getting behind on the bills. They also said they were told some financial records had been accidentally destroyed by a water leak in the treasurer's office. On Wednesday, new temple president Bikramjit Singh Sandhar said the new directors are aware of the donations, but he would not comment further until a financial review of the temple finances is completed. In 2008, the Gill slate reported the temple had assets of $6 million and revenues of $1.5 million, including $45,000 in investment interest. During the 2009 election, Gill said there had been extensive renovations to the temple, including the construction of new facilities and the retirement of $2 million in debt. Gill has so far not responded to The Leader's requests for comment. The Guru Nanak temple is the second-largest Sikh gurdwara in North America.