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Canada Canada Sending Dossier On Fraud Immigration Agents To Punjab

Jan 6, 2005
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Canada sending dossier on fraud

immigration agents to Punjab


Sunday, 26 September 2010

By Gurmukh Singh

TORONTO: Canada will soon send a dossier on "some of the worst fraudsters'' operating in Punjab to the state government to curb immigration fraud, including fake NRI marriages, according to Immigration Minister Jason Kenney.

The Canadian government is also holding discussions with the Indo-Canadian community to bring in tougher measures to stop marriages of convenience by Canada-based NRIs in India, he said.

Kenney, who has just returned from India after meeting federal and Punjab leaders, said Indian authorities have promised to co-operate with Canada to curb fraudulent marriages and bogus agents.

The Canadian minister, who met Vayalar Ravu, minister for overseas Indian affairs, Preneet Kaur, minister of state for foreign affairs, and Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh, said his trip was aimed at discussing these issues with them ahead of proposed legislative steps by India to address the problem.

"My message to the federal minister (Vayalar) was that their citizens are being exploited by the industry of counterfeiters and bogus immigration consultants. We are taking steps from the Canadian side to deal with it and we will appreciate if India would bring in more forceful legal tools to address the problem,'' Kenney told IANS.

The minister said , "They (have) committed to do so. Minister Ravi told me that the cabinet was considering a series of amendments to the Indian immigration Act. They recognize the problem.''

Since most of the fraud marriages by Canada-based NRIs are reported from Punjab, Kenney said Badal promised quick action if Canada brought such cases to his government's notice.

"He agreed that if we give his state police a dossier of evidence on some of the worst fraudsters, he would follow it up with appropriate enforcement action.''

Badal promised quick action "on a couple of actors in Punjab who we know are the worst - there is one guy who we estimate took $250,000 from students to submit really bad applications filled with counterfeit documents. He would have known that these will be rejected by us. But he didn't care because he got his money from the students,'' Kenney said.

He said, "We are putting together a dossier on this guy and give it the Punjab police to basically test the commitment of the state government to get serious about cracking down on the problem.''

As for fake marriages, he said Canada was holding consultations with its Indo-Canadian community to "hear from them what steps they think we should take to crack down on marriages on convenience or fraudulent marriages.''

But on the Indian side, he said, "This (fraud marriages) is part of the immigration fraud where you see people offering large amounts of money to get their son or daughter married in Canada. It is not a bona fide marriage, but a commercial transaction.''

Highlighting the magnitude of the problem, Kenney said, "We are seeing some terrible cases where Canadian men will go to India for a few weeks to take what they call a summer bride and then leave her without actually sponsoring her.''

The Canadian immigration minister said India too is increasingly concerned about the magnitude of this scandal of exploitation. "On the Canadian side, we are working at statutory, regulatory and operational changes to crack down on these marriages of convenience,'' he said.

source: http://www.punjabnewsline.com/content/canada-sending-dossier-fraud-immigration-agents-punjab/24290