U n d e r C o n s t r u c t i o n
Neeraj Bagga, Tribune News Service
Amritsar, November 19 Tim Uppal, the first-ever turbaned Sikh Minister in the Canadian Cabinet, has said the maximum visa fraud cases in his country were from Punjab, a fact that was “very upsetting”. Also, Uppal said the government of Alberta, a province of Canada, was all set to sign an MoU on education with Punjab.
A Minister of State for Democratic Reforms in the Canadian government, Uppal was felicitated at the Khalsa College here today for his political achievements. He said all modalities for the tie-up had been finalised and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal would soon ink the deal with the Alberta Premier.
Uppal said the present Canadian government had issued four-time more visas than that were issued earlier. “However, the number of fraudulent cases from Punjab is a matter of concern,” he said. He, however, expressed satisfaction that Indian students nowadays were studying abroad and then opting to work in home nation.
Uppal said his government had toughened the law regarding granting of permanent residency (PR) visas to avoid desertion of brides by NRI husbands after marriages. He said the newly wed couples would now have to live together for at least three years so as to be eligible for a PR visa.
About Tim Uppal
The first-ever turbaned Sikh Minister in the Canadian Cabinet, Tim Uppal was first elected to Canada’s House of Commons in 2008 and was re-elected in 2011 from parliamentary seat of Edmonton-Sherwood Park.
A kabaddi buff, he was born in British Columbia in 1974 and has spent most of his life in Edmonton.
Ghaziabad/New Delhi, 20 November 2011 Bharatiya Janata Party leader L.K. Advani’s Jan Chetna yatra is slated to culminate in Delhi on Sunday where party leaders claim that they would stage a massive rally at the Ramlila Maidan.
The party’s “whistleblowers” in the cash-for-vote scam — Ashok Argal, Faggan Singh Kulaste and Mahavir Bhagora, along with Mr. Advani’s former aide Sudheendra Kulkarni and party worker Suhail Hindustani — will participate in the rally.
The party on Saturday felicitated the four to highlight the corruption issue and demanded that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi clarify their stand on the matter.
Earlier, Mr. Advani reached Ghaziabad on Saturday on the last phase of his yatra.
Distinguishing his present journey from earlier ones he had undertaken, Mr. Advani said that in the earlier five, the guidance was given by his mentor Atal Bihari Vajpayee, but this time he had borne the load himself, adding he had however sought blessings from the former Prime Minister, a day prior to commencing the yatra.
The BJP leader said his decision to on the yatra was spontaneous, and came when two former BJP MPs were arrested in the cash-for-vote scam.
Asserting he had permitted them to go ahead with the plan to display the bribe money in Parliament, he said that he was shocked when they were arrested during the investigation.
He said the Delhi High Court’s decision to release all the arrested accused was a vindication of the purpose of his yatra.
Slamming the United Progressive Alliance government, he said it had signed a U.N. proposal to bring black black money from foreign countries but taken no action on it.
He said he had come to know that the French government has disclosed 700 names of those who had deposited black money in foreign banks but the government was not inclined to make them public.
Advani said the government of India has disclosed those names to the Supreme Court of India in a sealed envelope, but urged the names be made public.
“2010 and 2011 were years of corruptions and black money but 2012 will the year of accountability,” he said, saying the BJP would commit itself to removing corruption and bringing back black money to make a new India. (PTI IANS)
Levensloop is a walk/run raising money to help cancer patients. Each team had to keep a walker or runner on the course from 4 pm on Saturday till 4 pm on Sunday. The Sikh community took part with a team of nearly sixty walkers/runners. The pictures were all taken on Sunday 2 October.
Foreground right our black friend
Gingelom Sikhs, Balraj Singh’s wife and children, Harjit Kaur
Baloons – up in the air
Another look at the baloons
To see more Sint-Truiden pictures go to :
These are the last of the ‘Levensloop’ pictures
Tomorrow : Kamal Nath in Belgium
More Belgian pictures to follow
Man in Blue
The Tribune – It’s Punjabis vs Punjabis in Philippines; They give ‘suparis’ to get each other eliminated by criminals
Varinder Singh Tribune News Service
Jalandhar, November 19 The over one-lakh strong Punjabi community in Philippines is in a state of shock after the recent spurt in brutal murders of Punjabis youths, most of whom are into the lucrative money-lending business in that country. This has led to a rise in kidnappings for ransom and prosperity-triggered rivalry within the community.
While, 25-30 Punjabi youths have been murdered in Philippines this year alone, a whopping number of 150 Punjabis have lost their lives there since 2005. After 1994-95, inter-gang rivalries and murders of Punjabis witnessed a spurt from 2005 onwards, with 25-30 youths losing their lives to violence every year. Most of the victims were from Jalandhar, Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala, Moga and Nawanshahr.
The Punjabis in Philippines are worried by the fact that it is mostly Punjabis who are behind the high incidence of violence and that young and neo-rich Punjabis have even started foraying into “supari” killings of each other with the help of local criminal gangs. Philippinos too are getting impatient over the increasing involvement of Punjabis in crime.
“Earlier, it were mainly drug addicts who killed Punjabis to loot them. Now it is Punjabis who are after lives of Punjabis. Jealousy due to rising prosperity is fuelling murders and kidnappings. Neo-rich Punjabis don’t like the prosperity of other Punjabis and when the rivalries take a turn for the worst they hire contract killers to kill those they want to target,” said Mandip Singh Happy, the president of the NRI Sabha, Punjab’s Philippines wing who was currently on a trip to Punjab.
He said two Punjabi youths, Gurvinder Ginda and Ranjit Singh Jeeta, kidnapped by gangsters last month were yet to be traced. “The situation has deteriorated because Philippines and India are not signatories to the mutual extradition treaty. After committing crimes, Punjabis head to India in search of a safe haven. Some Punjabi youths killed had settled there after their marriage to Philippino girls. After their second marriages in Punjab, they were eliminated by relatives of their Philippino wives,” said Mandip Singh.
Prince, a resident of Bacaore Cavte city and a money-lender, said: “Punjabis were being targeted as they were directly into the money-lending business. Gujaratis and other Hindus were running factories so they were hardly touched by criminals.”
- 25-30 Punjabi youths have been murdered in Philippines this year
- 150 Punjabis have lost their lives in that country since 2005
- Inter-gang rivalries and murders of Punjabis witnessed a spurt from 2005
- Most victims are from Jalandhar, Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala, Moga and Nawanshahr
19 November 2011
Tangier: Pakistan hopes to lower its costly military expenditure in the next fiscal year to below the 16 per cent it took of the state’s budget in the current 2011-2012 fiscal year, the army’s spokesman said on Saturday.
The cash-strapped country allocated “around $5 billion to the army’s budget” in the current fiscal year, military spokesman Major-General Athar Abbas told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference in the Moroccan city of Tangier.
“That’s the equivalent of 16 per cent of the state’s budget,” said Athar.
Asked if the percentage figure would increase in the next fiscal year, Athar said: “Hopefully not because for about five years, the military budget remained at between 13 per cent and 14 per cent.
“It was increased only this year because of the environment of security, and a lot of things that was required by the paramilitary in particular.
“I don’t see the military expenditure taking in more than $5billion (in the next fiscal year),” he added.
Pakistan government’s fiscal year runs from July 1 of the previous calendar year to end-June of the following year.
The state increased by close to 12 per cent the budget for the military in 2011-2012, in what analysts link to an annual inflation rate that hovers around 13 percent.
Pakistan’s budget targets a budget deficit of 4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) for 2011/12 and an economic growth of 4.2 per cent.
Funds allocated by the government to the Pakistani army still represent a “very small amount”, he said.
“There is a lot of scope of enhancing the revenues of the government. If they go up by 70 or 80 per cent the military budget will boil down to 10 per cent,” Athar said.
With one of the world’s lowest tax-to-GDP ratio, reaching around 10 per cent, Pakistan is growingly dependent on foreign funds and loans, even for development projects. (Reuters)