PIFA Awards: Punjabis say will buy ticket, if pass not arranged | india | Hindustan Times
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PIFA Awards: Punjabis say will buy ticket, if pass not arranged

Punjabis can't change, no matter where they go and how prosperous they become. Toronto is ready to host the first Punjabi International Film Academy Awards (PIFAA) ceremony, and the chase in the expatriate community here is for free passes to the venue.

india Updated: Aug 01, 2012 16:01 IST
Gurpreet Singh Nibber

Punjabis can't change, no matter where they go and how prosperous they become. Toronto is ready to host the first Punjabi International Film Academy Awards (PIFAA) ceremony on Saturday, and the chase in the expatriate community here is for free passes to the venue.


"Pass hai (Do you have the free-entry permit?)," is the conversation in Canadian-accent Punjabi when two people from the community meet. The 4-lakh Punjabi population in the Ontario province of this North American country is excited, for sure, about the event.

Lawyer Sukhwinder Singh Baidwan expects it to be a great weekend. "I am excited," he said. "The organisers need to do more publicity of the event."

The Punjabi acting and music stars invited to perform at the show will showcase Punjabis' contribution to Canada. Samvedan Sandhu, Maninder, and Jasleen Dhami, girls from the local Punjabi community and working behind the show for a few days, are desperate for entry to the main event.

"(We are) Very excited," Samvedan. "We'll get to meet everyone from the Punjabi film industry and almost the entire Punjabi community in Canada."

All three are students, eager to be connected to their roots in Punjab. Air Canada Centre is the venue and the ticket may cost $99 (Rs 5,500), $69 (Rs 3,800), or $49 (Rs 2,700).

"My mother has paid $99, and I get free entry," said Samvedan.

Exporter Amarinder Singh sees the event as a moment of pride for Canadian Punjabis. "We'll make it a success," he said. "Pass or no pass, I'll attend."

Truck operator Devinder Gill wants only to hug actor Dharmendra. "He has done so much for the Punjabi community that I am eager to also touch his feet," he told HT.

"The community should support the awards, to see these become regular event," said Mohinder Singh Sidhu, who likes to be called Mohinder "Rajasthani", a native of India's desert state. An astrologer in Brampton, he predicts that the show will be a hit.