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Indian-origin journalist honoured in Canada

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Ottawa: An Indo-Canadian journalist has been felicitated here by the community members for her outstanding achievements in the media.India_Canada_Flag_Generic_Thinkstock_360

Adrienne Batra, Toronto Sun newspaper’s editor-in-chief, received the “Best Journalist Award” on Friday at ‘Parvasi Awards’ organised by the Parvasi Media Group.

The Parvasi Media Group established in 2005 to honor the accomplishments of successful Punjabi Canadians in various fields.

“The Indo-Canadian community has thrived in so many professions and it’s humbling to be acknowledged in the field of journalism,” Batra was quoted as saying by Toronto Sun.

Batra served as a lieutenant in the Canadian armed forces before joining the Toronto Sun in 2011.

Former Indian athlete Milkha Singh was the guest of honor at the ‘Parvasi Awards’.

(IANS)

 

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Journalist Killing Protest Creates Chaos, Leads to Shutdown in Tripura

Many activists of different political parties were injured in clashes as the BJP, Congress and other parties called a shutdown on Thursday to protest the killing of a journalist by a Tripura State Rifles (TSR) trooper

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Journalist killing leads to clashes in Tripura. IANS.

Agartala, Nov 23: Many activists of different political parties were injured in clashes while normal life was hit in Left ruled Tripura as the BJP, Congress and other parties called a shutdown on Thursday to protest the killing of a journalist by a Tripura State Rifles (TSR) trooper.

“Around 25 activists of different political parties including BJP and CPI-M were injured following the clashes in various places across Tripura,” a police official said.

Police said around 600 activists of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and other parties were arrested for picketing in front of government offices in different parts of the state.

Most of the government, semi-government, private offices, educational institutions, shops and business establishments were closed due to the strike called by the BJP, the Congress, the Trinamool Congress and the Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura.

Banks and financial institutions were also closed in view of the shutdown, which was opposed by the ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) led Left Front.

All vehicles, except those of security forces, went off the roads. The bandh did not affect flights and train services in and out of Tripura.

“The strike was successful and spontaneous,” state BJP President Biplab Kumar Deb said.

Security forces led by senior police officials have been deployed across the state to prevent any untoward incident.

According to police, TSR Second Battalion Rifleman Nandu Kumar Reang shot dead Sudip Datta Bhowmik, 50, at Radha Kishore Nagar, 25 km from Agartala, following an altercation on Tuesday. Reang was the bodyguard of Second Battalion Commandant Tapan Debbarma. The slain journalist had gone to meet Debbarma at the battalion headquarters.

Police have arrested both the trooper and the Commandant. The Chief Judicial Magistrate here sent the duo to 10 days in police custody.

The state government, which has handed over the case to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), also constituted a four-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the incident.

Bhowmik, who was a reporter with “Syandan Patrika” and television channel “Vanguard”, is survived by his wife, a government teacher, and two children.

Most of the local newspapers left their editorial blank on Thursday with a thick black border to register their strong protest over the killing.

Numerous theories and claims have surfaced regarding the reason behind the journalist’s killing, the second incident involving a media man in the state. Earlier, 28-year-old TV reporter Santanu Bhowmik was hacked to death while covering an event of a tribal party at Mandai in western Tripura on September 20.

“Syandan Patrikaa” editor and Tripura Newspaper Society President Subal Kumar Dey alleged that his reporter was targeted by the commandant as the former had written many stories against him in the newspaper.

“It was a pre-planned cold-blooded assassination and they tried to hide the body to destroy evidence. Bhowmik was killed as he had exposed the TSR commandant’s illegal acts,” Dey told the media.

Police, however, claim Bhowmik had stolen an envelope containing a huge amount of money or some confidential documents from Debbarma’s table while the latter was in the toilet after their meeting in the office chamber.

Tripura Governor Tathagata Roy, who is now in Delhi, has said that he will submit a report to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Bhowmik’s killing.

With the state Assembly polls due in February, the journalist’s murder has heated up the political atmosphere in the Left ruled state.

The ruling CPI-M criticised the BJP for politicising the killing of the journalist.

“The ‘bandh’ called by BJP is totally undemocratic. It would hamper normal lives and especially the annual examinations started in schools and ongoing revision of electoral rolls for the next Assembly elections,” CPI-M Central Committee member Gautam Das said.

The Congress has demanded a high-level inquiry into the murder. The BJP has demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Manik Sarkar.

Various journalists organisations in the northeast including the Tripura Working Journalists Association, Tripura Journalists Union (TJU) and the Agartala Press Club have also denounced the killing and demanded a probe.

The TJU has also demanded the resignation of the state Home Minister, a portfolio held by Sarkar. (IANS)

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Journalist Behind the Panama Papers Killed in a Car Bomb

Caruana Galizia was recently described by the American news outlet Politico as a "one-woman WikiLeaks".

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Daphne Caruana Galizia died on Monday when her car, a Peugeot 108, was destroyed by a powerful explosive device. (Representative image) Pixabay

Valletta, October 17, 2017 : A journalist who led the Panama Papers probe into corruption in Malta was killed on Monday in a car bomb near her residence, the media reported.

Daphne Caruana Galizia died on Monday when her car, a Peugeot 108, was destroyed by a powerful explosive device, reports the Guardian.

A blogger whose posts often attracted more readers than the combined circulation of the country’s newspapers, Caruana Galizia was recently described by the American news outlet Politico as a “one-woman WikiLeaks”.

Her latest revelations accused Malta’s Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and two of his closest aides, connecting offshore companies linked to the three men with the sale of Maltese passports and payments from the government of Azerbaijan.

No group or individual claimed responsibility for the attack, the Guardian reported.

Malta’s President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, called for calm. “In these moments, when the country is shocked by such a vicious attack, I call on everyone to measure their words, to not pass judgement and to show solidarity.”

ALSO READ Not Just Journalist Ram Chandra Chhatrapati, these 9 People too Bore the Brunt of Speaking Truth to Fight Corruption

In a statement, Muscat condemned the “barbaric attack”.

“Everyone knows Caruana Galizia was a harsh critic of mine,” said Muscat, adding “Both politically and personally, but nobody can justify this barbaric act in any way.”

He announced in parliament later on Monday that Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officers were on their way to Malta to assist with the investigation, following his request for help from the US government.

According to local media reports, Caruana Galizia filed a police report 15 days ago to say that she had been receiving death threats.

The journalist posted her final blog on her Running Commentary website at 2.35 p.m. on Monday, and the explosion, which occurred near her home, was reported to police just after 3 p.m.

Over the last two years, her reporting had largely focused on revelations from the Panama Papers, a cache of 11.5 million documents leaked from the internal database of the world’s fourth largest offshore law firm, Mossack Fonseca. (IANS)

 

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Justin Trudeau’s Government Selects Indo-Canadian Rana Sarkar as Consul-General to San Francisco

The Indo Canadian is also a member of the team that is negotiating NAFTA

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Rana Sarkar. Wikimedia

August 05, 2017: Rana Sarkar, an Indo-Canadian who was until recently national director for high growth markets at the Toronto-based multi-national KPMG, has been named by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government as Canadas Consul-General to San Francisco.

Simultaneously, Sarkar has also been named a member of the high-profile Canadian official team for renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the US and Mexico.

The Indo-Canadian community is elated over this very high profile appointment:

“Rana Sarkar (previously President of Canada-India Business Council) brings an impressive array of skills to his new position as Consul General in San Francisco,” says Kasi Rao, currently President of Canada-India Business Council and Vice-President of Asia-Pacific Foundation. “First, Rana is a global Canadian and has operated in multiple geographies – Canada, UK, and India. Second, he has brought individual networks and made them into institutional ones.

ALSO READ: Multiple Gender Identity Debate: Canada Passes Bill C-16

“Rana has maintained an abiding interest in the ideas and innovation space and therefore will be adept at positioning the Canadian advantage in a critically important global city of San Francisco.”

Gary Comerford, who till recently was President of C-IBC, says in an interview that Sarkar “will be a very strong addition to the Canadian-US trade team. His knowledge and considerable expertise in the areas of international trade will be invaluable as the NAFTA agreement is modernized.”

Sarkar was also a Liberal Party candidate for the federal riding of Don Valley North (in Toronto) in 2014 but was not successful and he later became a member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s team of advisers.

Sarkar was earlier visiting lecturer at the London School of Economics and Political Science and more recently Senior Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto.

Appointment of Sarkar in this high profile position is amongst a series of appointments of Indo-Canadians made by the Justin Trudeau government. They include four Indo-Canadian federal ministers: Amarjeet Sohi (Minister for Infrastructure and Communities); Bardish Chagger (Minister for Small Business and Tourism and House Leader); Harjit Singh Sajjan (Minister for National Defense); and Navdeep Bains (Minister for Innovation, Science and Economic Development).

More recently Trudeau named Anil Arora as Canada’s Chief Statistician. Two other high profile appointments include Sabi Marwah and Ratna Omidvar as Senators. There are 19 Indo-Canadian Members of the House of Commons, 18 of whom are Liberals. (IANS)