Monthly Archives: FEBRUARY 2018


RELIEF FOR AMARINDER | CHIDAMBARAM IN COURT
HC stays single bench’s judgment that quashed Suresh Kumar’s appointment, says “matter needs deeper deliberation”
14.02.18 - PT Bureau
HC stays single bench’s judgment that quashed Suresh Kumar’s appointment, says “matter needs deeper deliberation”



CHANDIGARH, February 14: In a legal twist that is likely to be seen as a boost for Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh as well as a vindication for his hand-picked senior bureaucrat Suresh Kumar, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday stayed an order of the Single Bench that had quashed Kumar's appointment as Chief Principal Secretary to CM.

With former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram appearing on behalf of the state, the high-profile case has now become a matter of prestige for CM Amarinder Singh who has more than once let it be known publicly that he will ensure Suresh Kumar's return to the key post.

The Bench of Justice Mahesh Grover and Justice Rajbir Sehrawat, which stayed the earlier judgement, observed that the single bench could not have exercised the jurisdiction in a writ of quo warranto. It issued notice of motion to the petitioner before the Single Bench, Suresh Kumar and other respondents for April 17. 

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With former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram appearing on behalf of the state, the high-profile case has now become a matter of prestige for CM Amarinder Singh who has more than once let it be known publicly that he will ensure Suresh Kumar's return to the key post.

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Wednesday’s judgement immediately triggered a new round of speculation about whether Suresh Kumar, who was pulled out of retirement to take up the assignment as Chief Principal Secretary, would rejoin. Kumar had earlier lost no time in packing his bags and heading home when a challenge was mounted to his appointment.

While Suresh Kumar had refused to defend his appointment, saying the onus was upon the state to do so, the State pleaded that the earlier judgement did not take into account the facts of the case and was in contravention of the well-settled principles of law.
 

The State's appeal, filed through the Chief Secretary and the Department of General Administration, argued that the Single Bench Bench did not explain how it deduced that the Cabinet Secretary’s powers and rank were being exercised by a contractual employee. Also, the State made a plea that Suresh Kumar was not empowered to exercise sovereign powers during the absence of the Chief Minister and such a claim could not be justified.
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Observing that courts cannot intervene in government decisions in such a manner, the Double Bench said, "There are serious pitfalls when courts start intervening in such a manner.”
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Observing that courts cannot intervene in government decisions in such a manner, the Double Bench said, "There are serious pitfalls when courts start intervening in such a manner.”

On its part, the State has been consistently claiming that Suresh Kumar's role was limited to recording the order and not passing the order on any file. Any orders were always passed by the CM as per the arrangement and the Single Bench's inference that the bureaucrat had the power to pass an order in the absence of the CM was factually incorrect.

"Hence, the findings recorded by the Court that the standing order and the appointment order made the respondent virtually the Chief Minister was contrary to the factual matrix.”

"In the present case, the terms and conditions of the appointment are very clear that the same are contractual in nature and co-terminus with the appointment of the present Chief Minister. Hence, the "impression” recorded by the court that the appointment of the respondent is against an ex-cadre post of an IAS cadre is not at all correct and is not supported by any document in that regard.” 

The bench observed that it is exercising its power of correctional jurisdiction. The division bench further observed that the petitioner doesn’t seem to have any link with governance and if it was a cause of public interest, the matter should have been listed before an appropriate bench.
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There has been much speculation in Punjab about those working overtime behind the scenes to muddy the waters for CM Amarinder Singh in this case. Media in Punjab has been rife about internal squabbles within the CMO that had upset Suresh Kumar more than the court case. 
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"We have heard learned counsel for the parties and are prima facie of the opinion that at best even if the locus of the petitioner to file a writ of quo warranto is accepted, the same would necessarily espouse a public interest as the petitioner's interest does not conflict with that of state or the incumbent assigned the status of the Chief Principal Secretary.
 

"Since the learned single judge who dealt with the matter was not bestowed with the subject roster, the judgement in these circumstances could possibly be construed as coram non judice. Even otherwise the matter needs deeper deliberation," the judgement said.

CHIDAMBARAM IN COURT

The appearance of senior Congress leader P Chidambaram as a lawyer for the State is not only being seen as a move to strengthen the state’s legal case but also to send a clear signal to the rank and file that the Chief Minister was fully invested in defending Suresh Kumar’s position and appointment.

There has been much speculation in Punjab about those working overtime behind the scenes to muddy the waters for CM Amarinder Singh in this case. Media in Punjab has been rife about internal squabbles within the CMO that had upset Suresh Kumar more than the court case. 
 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

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_______________________________________________________________


Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT




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WILL HE BE BACK?
New development in Suresh Kumar episode
14.02.18 - TEAM PT
New development in Suresh Kumar episode



'WILL HE BE BACK?,' is the question being debated in political circles of Punjab as the Punjab and Haryana high court on Wednesday stayed the single-judge order quashing the appointment of retired IAS officer Suresh Kumar as Chief Principal Secretary to Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh.
 
The court observed that the single bench could not have exercised the jurisdiction in a writ of quo warranto.
 
The bench observed that the courts cannot intervene in government decisions in such a manner. "There are serious pitfalls when courts start intervening in such a manner”.

The bench observed that it is exercising its power of correctional jurisdiction. The division bench further observed that the petitioner doesn’t seem to have any link with governance and if it was a cause of public interest, the matter should have been listed before an appropriate bench.

 
The state’s clear-cut stand in the written arguments was that Kumar was not passing any order on any file. It is only the Chief Minister who passed an order. The High Court’s observation that Kumar had the power to pass an order in the Chief Minister’s absence was factually incorrect and not borne out of the standing order impugned by the petitioner before the Single Judge.

The appeal added that Kumar neither took any decision, nor recorded it. Only the decisions taken by the Chief Minister were recorded on the file. "Hence, the findings recorded by the Court that the standing order and the appointment order made the respondent virtually the Chief Minister was contrary to the factual matrix.”

The Bench of Justice Mahesh Grover and Justice Rajbir Sehrawat also issued notice of motion to the petitioner before the Single Bench, Suresh Kumar and other respondents for April 17. Former finance minister P Chidambaram appeared for the state.

Claiming appointment of any person as a staff officer to assist him was the Chief Minister’s prerogative, the state was seeking directions for setting aside the Single Bench judgment.

Dubbing the verdict as contrary to facts on record and against well-settled principles of law, the state in its appeal filed through the Chief Secretary and the Department of General Administration added that it enjoyed the power to assign duties to an appointee.

The HC on January 17 had set aside the appointment of Suresh Kumar as chief principal secretary to Amarinder, ruling that he was holding the public office without authority.
 

Kumar, a 1983-batch retired IAS officer was appointed immediately after the Congress government took over reins in Punjab on March 16 last year. The post created for the first time in Punjab was stated to be equivalent to a cabinet secretary of the government of India. Kumar is being paid Rs 2.5 lakh per month minus pension.
 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles: 

OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES - Karze Ne Layee Ikk Hor Kisan Di Jaan...

RENUKA'S LAUGHTER: Thank you for your guffaws. We needed this non-violent weapon.

RISE ABOVE PERSONAL VINDICATION, MR SURESH KHUMAR. FOR PUNJAB.

PAY YOUR INCOME TAX? What an idea, sir jee! 

PADMAVATI - KARNI KYA & KATHNI KYA! 

PADMAVAT – FIRST DAY, FIRST SHOW IN DAVOS

TV DEBATE EXPLODES WITH REVELATION ABOUT PB&H HIGH COUR

MR CLEAN to PAKKE DHEETH: How Punjab’s Congress hurt Brand Rahul Gandhi? 

MANJIT SINGH CALCUTTA– THE DISSENTER

RANA GURJIT RESIGNS, BUT AMARINDER MAY HAVE LITTLE RESPITE

PUNJAB FARMERS AND IPL CRICKETERS - Finally, they can stand like equals

GOVT NOW DEFENDS MANSA FUCTION AND 6-FEET LONG CERTIFICATES

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION. My teacher is not alive, but you please call it off!

SELF GOAL BY AMARINDER GOVT ON VAISAKHI HOLIDAY 

AMARINDER, BADALS, KHAIRA, AROOSA ALAM & A JOURNALIST OF TRIBUNE

BUT AAP WON'T GET IT. TUM TO THEHRE SHEHARI 

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BUT AAP WON'T GET IT. TUM TO THEHRE SHEHARI 

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PLAYING WITH SIKH SENTIMENTS: Punjab Govt’s ad depicts Tenth Sikh Master astride Napoleon’s horse

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SUKHBIR IS RIGHT – On 97th anniversary  Panth Khatre Vich Hai. Where does this threat come from?

SHIROMANI AKALI DAL – Abhi to party shuru huyee hai...

MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS IN PUNJAB: How Congress, SAD, AAP have framed issues  

DO NOT GO GENTLE INTO THAT GOOD NIGHT

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1984 - A RIOT OR A GENOCIDE? Controversy explodes in Canada again as Hardeep Puri tweets

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JAANE KYA DIKH JAAYE! Rajasthan, where they write poems hailing Shambu Lal Regar 

'IF NOT VANDE MATARAM, then will you salute Afzal Guru?' 

LAHORE NU SALAAM – LAHORE CHODD AAYA - Prof. Randhir Singh

THE LOOT THAT RAJASTHAN COMMITTED – An insult bigger than Bollywood’s Padmawati! 

TRIBUNE’S HARISH KHARE SHATTERS EDITORIAL SILENCE OVER CARAVAN REPORTAGE  

THE DANGER OF RENAMING A COLLEGE 

ARNAB GOSWAMI WATCHES PADMAWATI, KARNI SENA IS HAPPIEST

DESH CHORR DO – VANDE MATARAM MAN TELLS SIKH LEADER TO LEAVE COUNTRY

DYAL SINGH COLLEGE TO VANDE MATARAM MAHAVIDYALAYA - A DESIGN NEFARIOUS?

HONESTY CERTIFICATE TO MAJITHIA TRIGGERS CRISIS IN TRIBUNE 

THE FINAL HONESTY CERTIFICATE: ISSUED BY THE TRIBUNE

WAS IT MEANT FOR TRUMP? OR US?  – Bush, Obama said this on Diwali

WALKING IN STEP, HAND ON THE SHOULDER Aye Bhayee, Bina Dekhe Chalo

CHALO, PATAAKE CHALAYEN – CM Amarinder Singh & Parkash Singh Badal Jee

NO TIME TO READ THIS STORY? – That’s OK - Please do not feel guilty 

ELECTION COMMISSION - YOU FAILED TO CONVINCE. TRY AGAIN.

THIS IS WHY ELECTION COMMISSION DID NOT ANNOUNCE GUJARAT POLL DATES – Decoding the mystery 

BJP TO EDUCATE FARMERS ABOUT AGRI & RELIGION LINK – Will tell them Modi did so much 

AYE BHAI, BINA DEKHE CHALO –  Walking with the blind in Chandigarh

BAD, BAD WOMAN! – Punjab’s top playwright slams woman complainant against Langah

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL – On Amod Kanth’s badge of shame

OPEN SALE AT GNDU – Have Rs 25,000? Get your compartment cleared. Rs 50,000 for two subjects

SUCHA SINGH LANGAH : KAMAAL JAARI HAI... Sucha Singh Langah wins, even in his darkest moments

ABEY TU BAHAR NIKAL, CHOWK MEIN AA   The 10-yard-radius protest

PATIALA, VIA PANCHKULA. HAIL DEMOCRACY! Halaat kharaab nahi hone chahiye!

PEHLU KHAN CASE   Will Govt Now Compensate The Magnificent Six? The Nation Needs to Know

MR HOME MINISTER, WILL YOU BE VISITING FAROOQ AHMAD DAR'S HOUSE? 

THE RYAN DEBATE: HOW INDIA MISSED THE GREAT CCTV ANGLE?  Not covered by cctv, so not covered by tv either

POLITICAL ECONOMY OF RETIREMENT AGE ROW   What’s wrong with retirement age policy?

THE GORAKHPUR DEAD SPEAK TO PUNJAB  From Patiala to Gorakhpur, the tale of the dead

WE WILL KILL 40-50 – Haryana BJP, Govt calculated death toll before firing first bullet

RELAX! ALL 30 WERE DERA PREMIS – Panchkula says something stinking about its conscience

LET'S KILL PAASH – Dr Sumail Singh Sidhu on the importance of Paash

A DOKLAM IN EVERY FIELD: Farmers not only produce food. They produce peace.

SURGICAL STRIKE YOU DID NOT KNOW ABOUT: When Indian jawans killed everyone at Pak post

PUNJAB: AN IDEA IN SEARCH OF WORDS: Punjab, more than a poster boy of progress or a renegade from modernity

_______________________________________________________________


Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT




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CM asks health minister to discuss with centre shifting of proposed Mohali medical college
13.02.18 - TEAM PT
CM asks health minister to discuss with centre shifting of proposed Mohali medical college



CHANDIGARH: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has directed the state health minister to explore with the central government the possibility of shifting the proposed medical college in Mohali to border areas, possibly Sangrur, and to plan all future heath projects in areas that lack medical facilities.

The Chief Minister said he will himself also meet Union Health Minister JP Nadda to discuss the change of the medical college site, besides writing to the Prime Minister to expedite the AIIMS Bathinda project, for which the state government has completed all the necessary formalities.

The Rs 800 crore AIIMS Bathinda project is 100% centrally sponsored while the Rs 300 crore Medical College project is on a Centre-State sharing pattern in 70:30 ratio.

The directives from the Chief Minister came here during a meeting on Tuesday to review the status of the two projects, aimed at raising the health infrastructure bar in the state.

The Chief Minister was informed that Mohali was selected for the Medical College under a scheme floated back in 2012, for which a pre-condition required that the city should have a 200-bedded hospital which the Centre could help upgrade. At that time, Mohali had one civil hospital, with 200 beds, and no private hospital or medical college, and thus met the terms and conditions of the scheme. Since then, however, other, more needy areas had also emerged to meet the conditions and could be selected for uplift of the medical facilities, the meeting discussed.

Noting that concentrating all facilities in Mohali would lead to lopsided development, since neighbouring Chandigarh already has medical colleges, Amarinder suggested setting up the medical college in the under-developed border areas. Finance Minister Manpreet Badal agreed that Sangrur would be an ideal place for the proposed college.

The Chief Minister asked Health Minister Brahm Mohindra to take up the matter with Union Minister JP Nadda and check if Sangrur could be selected for the medical college, and to proceed accordingly, based on the decision of the Government of India.

On the issue of AIIMS Bathinda, Amarinder was told that the state government had already resolved all pending issues, including shifting of water channel and exchange of land, for the hospital-cum-medical college, for which the foundation stone was laid by the Prime Minister in 2016. Punjab had provided land and had to create the necessary road infrastructure, with the rest to be handled by the central government.

The ball was, therefore, now in the court of the Government of India (GoI), which had started construction of the boundary wall and floated global tenders for architects, which were expected to be finalized soon, the Chief Minister was further informed.

Captain said he would seek the Prime Minister’s intervention with a request to direct the Union Health Ministry to speed up work on the project so that the people of Punjab get its benefit at the earliest.

During the meeting, the Chief Minister also directed the Health Department to vigorously pursue the setting of 100% central project of PGI satellite centres at Ferozepur and Sangrur. He was informed that while the Centre was keen to set the ball rolling, the PGI had certain reservations. Captain Amarinder asked the department to resolve the issues with PGI at the earliest.

The meeting was attended by Health and Family Welfare Minister Brahm Mohindra, Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal, Media Advisor to CM Raveen Thukral, Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Tejveer Singh, Additional Chief Secretary Higher Education S K Sandhu, Additional Chief Secretary Housing & Urban Development Vini Mahajan, Principal Secretary Finance Anirudh Tiwari, Principal Secretary Medical Education and Research Sanjay Kumar and Deputy Commissioner Bathinda Diprava Lakra.




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GURU NANAK DEV JI'S 550TH PARKASH PURAB
CM calls for joint effort, opposition stays away from meet
12.02.18 - TEAM PT
CM calls for joint effort, opposition stays away from meet



CHANDIGARH: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has directed the Tourism and Culture Department to take on the arrangements for the 550th birth anniversary celebrations of Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji on a war footing to make it a mega success, carrying all political parties along, even though opposition leaders and the SGPC president failed to turn up for the first meeting of the organizing committee on Monday.

The department had sent a special invite to SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal, Member Rajya Sabha Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Naresh Gujral, President SGPC Gobind Singh Longowal, President Punjab State BJP Unit Vijay Sampla and AAP MP Bhagwant Mann to participate in the first review meeting of the organizing committee. However, they did not attend the meeting, which had been convened to chalk out the detailed programme of the celebrations of the 550th 'Parkash Purab' of the 1st Sikh Guru.

Tourism and Culture Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu said it was unfortunate that the opposition chose to politicize such an important religious occasion by boycotting the meeting. Guru Nanak Dev ji’s 550th birth anniversary is an occasion that requires all political parties to rise above their narrow political considerations, he added.

MLA Dera Baba Nanak Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said that by abstaining from the meeting, the opposition leaders had sought to undermine the ideology of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, who propagated the message of love and communal harmony to the humanity.

The Chief Minister, however, urged the department to continue to work with all political parties to ensure that the event is a huge success, as befitting its importance for Punjab and its people. Appealing to all opposition members to join hands with the government for this momentous and historic event, he asked Navjot Singh Sidhu to connect with the opposition leaders on this. Sidhu assured Amarinder that he would personally approach all the opposition leaders and SGPC on the Chief Minister's behalf to persuade with them to participate in this pious occasion collectively, cutting across party lines.

The meeting also authorised the tourism minister to set up a sub-committee to look into different aspects of the celebrations and submit their report at the earliest. With just about 18 months to go for the event, the work needs to be taken up on a war footing, said the Chief Minister, who presided over the review meeting. No stone should be left unturned to ensure the success of this pious event, which we were fortunate to be celebrating in our life time,he said.

The meeting was attended by various eminent scholars, philosophers and dignitaries across various fields of excellence. Eminent Sikh Scholar Dr Kirpal Singh, noted political sociologist Dipankar Gupta, Chairman Punjab Art Council and noted Punjabi poet Surjit Pattar, well-known environmentalist Balbir Singh Seechewal and Vice Chancellor of Punjabi University Patiala, Dr B S Ghuman, came up with various suggestions to build the momentum for the mega event.

The Chief Minister asked them to submit their proposals and suggestions to the Tourism and Cultural Affairs Department to enable the state government to finalize the modalities for the event. Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh said that would enable the State Government to forward a composite proposal to the Government of India to seek requisite funds.

Prominent among those who attended the meeting included Cabinet Ministers Charanjit Singh Channi, Sadhu Singh Dharamsot, Razia Sultana, Media Advisor to CM Raveen Thukral, Principal Secretary to CM Tejveer Singh, MLA Sultanpur Lodhi Navtej Singh Cheema, Maharaja of Kapurthala Brig. (Retd.) Sukhjit Singh, Chairman Anad Foundation Bhai Baldeep Singh, Director National Institute of Punjab Studies Bhai Veer Singh Sahitya Sadan New Delhi Mohinder Singh, Additional Chief Secretary Housing and Urban Development Vini Mahajan, Principal Secretary Tourism and Cultural Affairs Vikas Pratap, Commissioner Jalandhar Division Raj Kamal Choudhury, and Chairman Punjab Pollution Control Board K S Pannu.




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WILL PAVE WAY FOR BETTER RELATIONS WITH CANADA
CM welcomes Sajjan's against Khalistani movement
08.02.18 - TEAM PT
CM welcomes Sajjan's against Khalistani movement



CHANDIGARH: Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh has welcomed the categorical denial by Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan of taking a pro-Khalistani stance, and congratulated Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for creating the necessary environment against secessionist forces believed to be operating from his country.

Sajjan’s statement, carried by the Canadian Press on Wednesday, that he and fellow Sikh minister Amarjit Sohi, "neither sympathise with nor espouse the Sikh nationalist movement, which is bent on creating a separate country called Khalistan in India’s Punjab region” indicated that the Canadian Prime Minister had clearly sent out a strong signal within his party and government that he would not allow his country’s soil to be used for any anti India activities, said the Chief Minister.

The latest statements by Sajjan and Sohi, who has also made it clear that he does not sympathise with the (Khalistani) cause, have paved the way for better relations with Canada, which shares strong roots with India in view of the large Sikh population settled there, Captain Amarinder said, in a statement issued here on Thursday.

Reiterating that he had always found Trudeau to be a fine human being, the Chief Minister said he looked forward to meeting the Canadian Prime Minister during the latter’s visit to India, including Punjab, later this month. The visit, said Amarinder, would give Canada and Punjab the opportunity to strengthen business and trade ties for mutual benefit.

Divisive forces propagating terrorism should not be encouraged at any cost by any nation, Captain stressed, adding that such activities pose a serious threat to global peace and, therefore, should not be allowed to flourish in any part of the world. Nurturing or supporting separatist forces always proves detrimental, in the long run, not only to countries against which they are unleashed but also to those which allow such elements to operate from their soil, he added.

Amarinder pointed out that Canada had always been a friend of India, especially Punjab, whose people had contributed significantly to the Western nation’s progress and development.




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Comment by: Gurdip Singh Narula

I read the article of arminder singh but CM
Had misunderstand since he was in
Canada but local government did not allow any body for political purpose . Sajjan Singh very high position in the country and he can not give any wrong impression of the country .
Being as Sikh ,he has to make happy. All the people .Now Sajjan Singh and Sohi clear through his statement and prime minister denied sent strongly statement .

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