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Controversial McGuinty attending Sikh parade

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by spnadmin, Apr 24, 2010.

  1. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    B]McGuinty attending Sikh parade[/B]

    McGuinty attending Sikh parade | Toronto & GTA | News | Toronto Sun
    Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty says he won’t back down from attending a long-running Sikh parade in downtown Toronto on Sunday despite calls for him to be a no-show.

    A group calling itself the Sikh Activist Network, in a meeting with parade organizers last week, called for McGuinty not to attend or speak at the 33rd annual Sikh Khalsa Day parade that attracts about 80,000 people and runs from the CNE to Queen’s Park.

    The group is seeking an apology from McGuinty over his welcome to Toronto last month of Kamal Nath, India’s minister of road transport and highways.

    Nath is accused of helping organize deadly riots against Sikhs in November 1984 after the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards in New Delhi. More than 3,000 Sikhs were killed in four days across India.

    Balkaran Singh Gill, a member of the Ontario Sikh and Gurdwara Council organizing the parade, said there won’t be any problems for the premier.
    “There are a number of Sikhs who are angry at the premier,” Gill said on Thursday. “They did not like the warm response given to Nath by the premier.”

    He said community elders have spoken to group members who wanted an apology and have reached an agreement. Organizers at the event plan to honour politicans who condemned Nath’s trip to Canada.

    Council president Harbans Singh Jandali said he expects the parade to go off without a hitch.

    “Things will be very smooth,” Jandali said. “We don’t expect any problems or concerns for the premier.”

    McGuinty spokesman Karman Wong said Thursday the premier will be attending the event.

    “Ontarians still feel the pain of these events very deeply, and I want to convey our sympathies,” McGuinty said in a statement last month. “Our success has been found in our ability to work together through mutual respect and understanding.”

    Toronto Police Const. Tony Vella said there will be a police presence along the parade route to help with public security, traffic and other problems.
    Police are concerned that friends of five Sikh men arrested in fights at Peel Region temples may show up on the parade route to cause problems.

    B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell boycotted a Sikh parade in Surrey on April 17 after organizers refused to apologize for a perceived threat against two other politicians.
     
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  3. roab1

    roab1
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    Sikh Youth Organization Demands Retraction of False Statements in the Toronto Sun | Earth Times News

    TORONTO, ONTARIO -- 04/23/10 -- - The Sikh Activist Network demands a retraction of the false statements in an article published online by the Toronto Sun on Thursday, April 22, 2010. This article falsely claims that the Sikh Activist Network, a youth run organization based out of the Peel region, has been coordinating efforts to block Premier Dalton McGuinty's attendance at the annual Khalsa Day parade in Toronto.
    The Sikh Activist Network has never made a statement in regards to the attendance of Premier Dalton McGuinty at the Toronto Khalsa Day Parade. Furthermore, the Sikh Activist Network adheres to the Sikh spiritual belief in respect, tolerance and equality for all people regardless of sex, religion, gender, race or caste. As the Khalsa Day parade is an annual celebration of the Sikh New Year celebrated around the world, it is our position that that the Khalsa Day celebration is an inclusive space for all and all people are welcome to attend.

    These false statements made by the Toronto Sun should not be confused with the efforts of Sikh community members of Ontario who are demanding an explanation regarding Premier McGuinty's response to the Delhi Massacres of 1984. On March 23, 2010, Dalton McGuinty said, at an Etobicoke high school, that 1984 was "many years ago." This statement was in reference to the concerns of Sikhs regarding the arrival in Canada of Kamal Nath, an alleged perpetrator of the Sikh genocide in 1984.

    This statement made by Dalton McGuinty is concerning, as the wounds of November 1984 are still fresh in the minds of Sikh communities in Canada. During November 1984, widespread massacres took place across India against the Sikhs, in which thousands of Sikhs were killed. It is important to note that many Sikhs fled to Canada during this time of turmoil and a large number of those who fled reside in Ontario today.

    Contacts:
    Media Contact:
    Counsel for the Sikh Activist Network
    Jagmeet S. Dhaliwal B.Sc., LL.B.
    647 407 2245
    dhaliwal.law@gmail.com
     
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