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Canada’s Sikh officer who fought for right to wear turban honored

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Photo: Flickr

Vancouver: Baltej Singh Dhillon, who made the history after being appointed the first turbaned Sikh officer in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), was honored at an annual event held to eradicate racism on Saturday.

Organized by Spice Radio in partnership with Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, it was second annual Raise Your Hands Against Racism campaign that was launched on the occasion of Martin Luther King’s birth anniversary last year.

Dhillon’s appointment in 1990 had stirred lot of controversy as it led to quite the racist backlash with rightwing groups openly opposing his recruitment. However, he won the fight despite many challenges and hostility.

Dhillon told HT that the RCMP will soon have turbans for commissioned Sikh officers like himself which means uniform rules are going to be amended to accommodate turbaned officials.

Dhillon is the first individual to be honored as part of the anti-racism initiative that was started by Spice Radio CEO Shushma Datt, a seasoned broadcaster in the local South Asian community. She has announced that each year trailblazers like Dhillon will be recognised and honoured for standing up against discrimination in any form.

The campaign coincides with the festival of Holi and participants are encouraged to dip their hands in color and leave their handprints on a sheet of white paper along with a statement against racism at different locations across Greater Vancouver.

People from different ethnicities thronged to all these locations in Vancouver, Burnaby, Surrey and White Rock to participate in the campaign. The volunteers wore t-shirts carrying slogan #HandsAgainstRacism. The campaign location in Surrey, with a sizable Punjabi population, remained a crowd puller where Indo-Canadian MLA Harry Bains also showed up.

Both Vancouver and Surrey municipalities made proclamations recognizing the campaign.

At the opening event held at Roundhouse Community Center, prominent South Asian scholar Suresh Kurl spoke about the significance of Holi and its relevance in the fight against racism. Shiamak Davar dance team and a team of drummers led by popular radio host Gurp Sian performed on the occasion.

Source: Hindustan Times

  • Shriya Katoch

    Such bravehearted people that protect our culture in foreign borders should truly be rewarded .

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South Africa calling for Sunny Leone

The show "Karenjit Kaur...", which will stream on the OTT platform ZEE5, revolves around the journey of Sunny, who was born as Karenjit Kaur

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New show on Sunny's life.

Actress Sunny Leone is heading to South Africa to shoot “Karenjit Kaur – The Untold Story of Sunny Leone”. She says this year has been one of the best years of her life.

“It has been a very hectic year for me and that is exactly what I had been looking for . This is one of the best year of my life. I am currently heading to South Africa for the shoot of m1y biopic, and all excited to reunite with the team their,” Sunny said in a statement.

Sunny Leone
Sunny’s real name is Karenjit Kaur Vohra. Wikimedia Commons

Sunny, who welcomed her twins Noah and Asher in March, has also been keeping busy with her newly launched make-up range — Star Struck by Sunny Leone.

Also Read: Best Sunny Leone’s songs which will make you groove

The show “Karenjit Kaur…”, which will stream on the OTT platform ZEE5, revolves around the journey of Sunny, who was born as Karenjit Kaur in a middle class Sikh family in Canada. It will trace her transition from being a little girl to becoming an adult film actress and from there to her rise in Bollywood. IANS

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