ISKCON GOVERNING BODY COMMISSION SOCIETY
Reg. No S/74662 under the West Bengal Societies Registration Act, 1961
P.O. Shree Mayapur Dham, Dist. Nadia, W. Bengal
MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF THE ISKCON
SRIDHAM MAYAPUR, FEBRUARY 20 – MARCH 1, 2003
THAT His Holiness Bhakti Caitanya Swami is elected as GBC Chairman.
THAT His Grace Praghosa dasa is elected as First GBC Vice-Chairman.
THAT His Holiness Devamrita Swami is elected as Second GBC Vice-Chairman.
THAT His Grace Radha Krishna dasa is elected as GBC Secretary.
THAT His Holiness Bir Krishna dasa Goswami is elected Special Duty Officer.
THAT the following devotees are elected as ACTING GBC members:
His Holiness Bhanu Swami
His Holiness Bhakti Purusottama Swami
His Holiness Devamrita Swami
His Grace Praghosa dasa
THAT the following devotees are elected as ASSISTANT GBC members:
His Grace Hrdaya Caitanya dasa
His Grace Radha Krishna dasa
101. Sannyasa Waiting List
[ACTION ORDER] Waiting period for the following candidates for sannyasa:
Bir Krishna dasa approved when he passes the Bhakti Sastri exam
Makhanlal dasa 5 years
Pariksit dasa 1 year
Pundarik Vidyanidhi dasa 1 year
Radha Ramana dasa approved
Ramacandra dasa 3 years
Sarvaisvarya dasa 4 years
Siddharta dasa 5 years
Simhesvara dasa 1 year
Svayambhu dasa 1 year
Visvambhara dasa 1 year
Section 200: BUDGET
201. GBC budget:
[ACTION ORDER] It is resolved that the GBC budget in Rs. for 2003/2004 is.
Rs. 9,00,000 Funding Mr. Arnold Zack
Rs. 75,000 Ministry for Deity Worship
Rs. 1,97,500 Ministry for Cow Protection
Rs. 2,00,000 Organization Annual General Meeting
Rs. 1,10,000 ISKCON Database
Rs. 1,00,000 Education
It is resolved that as statutory auditor for next year is appointed:
Shri A. K. Shah F. C. A.
125, Netaji Subhas Road
Room No. 45
Kolkatta 700 001
Section 300: CHILD PROTECTION
301. TASK FORCE REPORT CP:
[ACTION ORDER] Resolved that the GBC Executive Committee organizes a complete review of the Task Force report as well as the CPO’s implementation of that report.
The review will be discussed and voted on at the 2004 AGM. That review will be done by whoever are willing of the original members of the Task Force as well as others added by the Executive Committee.
Section 400: B.B.T.
401. BBT-GBC Relations Committee
1. The BBT trustees and directors and members of the GBC are duty-bound to make sure that the funds set aside by the BBT for construction are used exclusively for the purposes set forth by Srila Prabhupada, the founder-acharya of the trust—that is, for the construction and renovation of temples.
By Srila Prabhupada’s written directive, it is the BBT trustees who have the sole authority to decide which construction projects such funds should be spent for. But the BBT trustees and directors prefer to leave this decision to the GBC body.
The GBC body makes this decision once a year, at its annual meeting in Mayapur. No requests will be granted at any other time.
No ISKCON project, zone, or yatra should expect the BBT directors or the GBC Executive Committee to allot to them any funds whatsoever from the BBT “construction fund”. Nor should any ISKCON authority announce that an allotment of such funds is likely to be available.
Request for loans from the BBT are handled by the BBT directors themselves and may be submitted to them at any time.
2. Annually, the GBC executive committee will provide for the BBT directors a financial report regarding construction and renovation funds granted by the BBT. This will take the form of an annual year- end report, itemized for each project, for how the funds have been spent.
3. In considering applications for grants for temple construction and renovation, the GBC will give weight to the applicant’s history of book distribution.
4. It is an essential duty of all GBC members to see that the temples in their zone regularly pay any debts they may have to the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust.
To further this included in the annual reports for each GBC zone will be a temple-by-temple report on both book distribution and debts to the BBT (in actual numbers, as opposed to “good”, “poor” or other subjective measures). The BBT directors have agreed that in advance of the meetings they will supply each GBC member with the ingredients for such a report and will provide a duplicate copy for the GBC Executive Committee.
At the annual GBC meeting, a subset of the GBC-BBT Relations Committee will meet individually with GBC members whose book distribution or BBT debts are a matter of concern.
Section 500: INTERNAL ISKCON
501. Tamal Krishna Goswami
[STATEMENT] The following resolution on HH Tamal Krishna Goswami was unanimously accepted by the GBC members:
The sudden and premature departure of Tamal Krsna Goswami to join Srila Prabhupada’s eternal pastimes has left a void in ISKCON that will be extraordinarily difficult to fill.
Today, a year after his departure, we reflect on his many accomplishments in Srila Prabhupada’s service. During his thirty-four years of service, Tamal Krishna Goswami:
– Organized the first wide-scale harinama and book distribution in ISKCON.
– Helped pioneer Krsna consciousness in America, Europe, India and the Far East.
– Was appointed by Srila Prabhupada to the first GBC.
– Accepted and maintained vows of sannyasa for thirty years.
– Served as ISKCON’s first GBC in India for four years.
– Secured ISKCON’s first property in Mayapur and participated in the development of Mayapur for the rest of his life.
– Organized the Radha Damodar party, one of the most successful preaching and book distribution team in ISKCON history.
– Opened China for Krishna consciousness and preached there successfully for over twenty-five years.
– Developed model Krishna conscious communities in Dallas and Houston.
– Cared for Srila Prabhupada as his personal secretary for the final year of his manifest pastimes.
– Initiated over one thousand disciples in America, Europe, India, Fiji, the Far East and elsewhere, exceptionally well-trained devotees noted for their dedication.
– Published Jagannath Priya Natakam and several other valuable and important books.
– Achieved outstanding success in the academic field, earning top honors at Southern Methodist and Cambridge Universities.
Tamal Krishna Goswami’s departure from this world was clearly Krishna’s will, coming as it did at an auspicious hour in an auspicious place. He left this world without suffering and immediately after completing a period of deep loving exchanges with his God brothers and disciples.
We, the Governing Body Commissioners of ISKCON, express our profound bereavement at his passing. We miss him deeply as we glorify his exemplary life and service to Srila Prabhupada.
502. Reinstatement Sankhabrith dasa
[ACTION ORDER] After due consideration and consultation with Shankabhrit dasa, the GBC hereby reinstates him as a member of ISKCON. Resolution number 72 of 1990 is hereby rescinded.
503. Suhotra Swami
A. the GBC hereby grants H. H. Suhotra Swami his request to be transferred from active service on the GBC body to service as an emeritus member. The GBC wishes to express its deep gratitude and appreciation for his years of devoted service on the GBC body.
B. the GBC hereby nominates H. H. Suhotra Swami to membership on the Sastric Advisory Council.
504. Reinstatement Ananda Svarupa dasa
[ACTION ORDER] Having met with H. G. Ananda Svarupa dasa and received from him a letter of sincere regret and apology, the GBC hereby reinstates him as a member of ISKCON with privilege of full participation.
505. Hridayananda dasa Goswami
[ACTION ORDER] The GBC hereby transfers H. H. Hridayananda dasa Goswami from his status as GBC emeritus back to the status of active membership as full GBC. The GBC body welcomes his participation on the body and looks forward to having his association again at Mayapur.
506. Discipline of ISKCON leaders
[ISKCON LAW] Resolved, That ISKCON Law 126.96.36.199 is amended to delete the paragraph that reads:
“A member who has been censured three times shall be placed on probation. If, during a period of three years, no motion to censure is adopted against a member, then his slate of censures is wiped clean.”
THAT ISKCON Law 5.5.4 is amended to read as follows:
Any ISKCON leader may be placed on probation by 2/3 vote of the Divisional Council if it is deemed that either:
The leader has previously received one or more censures and the censuring body remains concerned about the leader to the extent that it deems that a particular program of rectification is required, Or
The leader has not been previously censured, but the situation is of a sufficiently serious nature that a program of rectification is required immediately.
THAT ISKCON Law 188.8.131.52 is amended to read as follows:
The period of probation shall normally be for six months or until the problem is deemed rectified by the censuring body or the Divisional Council.
THAT ISKCON Law 184.108.40.206 is amended to read as follows:
If he has been on probation for at least six months and the situation has not been rectified, the Divisional Council, by two thirds (2/3) majority vote can recommend to suspend an ISKCON Leader. If approved by the local GBC’s concerned and other GBC’s (totaling a minimum of three GBC’s preferably from the same region), he may be suspended from his present position until either his suspension is revoked or he is removed.
In addition, the ISKCON Leader’s local GBC Zonal Secretary along with two consenting GBC’s, or an authorized ISKCON Judicial Committee, or the GBC Body, shall also have the power to suspend an ISKCON Leader. In emergencies the GBC Executive Committee can suspend an ISKCON Leader.
507. Srila Prabhupada’s Vrndavana Samadhi
[ACTION ORDER] Resolved that:
The responsibility, of funding and maintaining Srila Prabhupada’s Vrndavana Samadhi is handed over to the VEB.
508. The Sastric Advisory Council’s paper on Prominent Link
[STATEMENT] That the GBC endorses the Sastric Advisory Council’s (SAC) response to the Prominent Link paper as representing accurately the position of Srila Prabhupada, the parampara, and sastra. In the GBC’s estimation, the SAC response adequately addresses the essential points of the paper’s arguments concerning the position of the Diksa guru in ISKCON.
509. Kesava Swami
[ACTION ORDER] That Kesava Swami is not a sannyasi in good standing in ISKCON. Therefore he may not:
Give any classes in an ISKCON temple
Counsel or advise devotees as a representative of ISKCON
Collect funds for any ISKCON project
Lead kirtanas in an ISKCON temple
Perform arati in an ISKCON temple
His case will be reviewed at the 2004 GBC AGM in Mayapura.
510. Saraswat Gaudiya Vaisnava Association
[STATEMENT] Jayapataka Swami is encouraged to continue his service with the Sarasvata Gaudiya Vaisnava Association, and is authorized to represent ISKCON and co-opt additional representatives to attend SGVA meetings as needed.
511. Radhapada dasa
[STATEMENT] The GBC Body expresses its deep appreciation for the exceptional devotional service rendered to Srila Prabhupada and Sri Mayapur Dhama by His Grace Radhapada dasa, who left this world on April 28, 2002.
512. Annual General Meeting 2004
[ACTION ORDER] It was resolved that the Annual General Meeting 2004 will start on the 20th of February 2004 and end on the 29th of February 2004.
600. Intellectual Property Rights
601. Statement by the ISKCON Governing Body Commission Regarding Intellectual Property Rigths
[STATEMENT] The ISKCON Governing Body Commission fully accepts that intellectual property rights, and the national and international laws which protect and enforce such rights, should be embraced within ISKCON.
As there is a perceived need to educate the members of ISKCON specifically with respect to intellectual property rights, the GBC issues the following statement and urges all members of ISKCON to abide by these strictures governing copyrighted works:
“A copyright, that is, the exclusive right to a work, is automatic upon the creation of a work. Nothing need be done at the creation of a work to bestow the copyright. A work is considered “created” when it is “fixed in a medium,” such as written down or recorded. A work is protected even if it has no notice on it. ISKCON recognizes these and other intellectual copyright principles outlined in the Berne Convention, and it subscribes to its rule and definitions. ISKCON also recognizes the necessity for its members to both refrain from violating copyright laws and to prevent the sale or distribution of pirated materials in its temples and affiliated properties. Although ISKCON has no apparatus to enforce existing copyright laws, if any abrogation of this standard is found, the offended parties are encouraged by ISKCON to prosecute to the full extent of the law.”
Additionally, the ISKCON Governing Body Commission wishes to point out the following ISKCON Laws which are applicable to violation of copyright laws. In this regard the following ISKCON Laws and GBC Resolutions can be referred to:
LAWS GOVERNING THE BEHAVIOR OF ALL ISKCON MEMBERS
8.1.2 Regarding Local Laws
GBC Resolution 23.3 ISKCON Television, Inc.
LAWS PROVIDING GUIDANCE FOR ACTIONS TO BE TAKEN BY ISKCON LEADERS
Under the heading of ISKCON Spiritual Leadership
220.127.116.11.6.6 Following Local Laws
18.104.22.168.6.8 Removal of a Devotee from a Temple
LAWS PROVIDING REMEDIES WHICH ARE POTENTIALLY RELEVANT TO THIS DISPUTE
22.214.171.124.1 Censure—Reasons for Censuring—Misconduct and Indiscipline
126.96.36.199 Probation—Procedure and Conditions
188.8.131.52 Rectification Programs
700. Zonal Assignments
The Zonal Assignments can be consulted as an appendix of present minutes.