3 Canadian cities dedicate Sept 6 to slain rights activist Jaswant Khalra

Updated on Aug 31, 2020 04:17 AM IST
Copy Link
AMRITSAR | By, Amritsar

The councils of three key Canadian cities — Burnaby, New Westminster and Brampton — have proclaimed September 6 as ‘Jaswant Singh Khalra Day’ to mark the 25th death anniversary of the slain Amritsar-based human rights activist.

The proclamations signed by the respective mayors pay tribute to the rights campaigner who originally belonged to Tarn Taran district’s Khalra village.

“Jaswant Singh Khalra was a strong advocate of democratic and civil rights and a highly respected leader of the Sikh community. He died fighting for human rights and dignity of the Sikhs and others. September 6 is a historically important day recognised by the Sikhs and South Asians all across Canada each year in commemoration of his death in 1995,” reads the proclamation.

It further reads, “The city honours the Sikh history and culture, Jaswant Singh Khalra’s place in South Asian history, and our valued relationship with the Sikh community and its strong commitment to social justice,” it further reads.

Hailing the move of the Canadian cities, his wife Parmjit Kaur Khalra, who contested the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from Khadoor Sahib segment unsuccessfully, said, “It is matter of great pride for me that other countries are recognising the contribution of my husband to human rights. More Canadian cities are likely to make such proclamations.”

“But in our country, we had to wait for several years to get justice for him. And the work done by him has not been recognised so far in India,” she added.

The Punjab-origin representatives in these municipalities and other councillors reportedly pushed these proclamations, it is learnt. These cities have a considerable population of Punjabis who play a key role in the electoral politics there.

In 2017, the city council of Fresno in California, US, named one of its important parks after Khalra. This park was earlier known as Victoria Park.

Khalra was investigating the extrajudicial killings in Punjab during the militancy period and raised his voice against the same at international level. Some police personnel kidnapped him on September 6, 1995. Earlier that year, he had visited Canada to educate the Punjabi diaspora and Canadian politicians about the human rights situation in Punjab.

As per the verdict of a Patiala court, he was abducted and murdered by the police in cold blood.


    Surjit Singh is a correspondent. He covers politics and agriculture, besides religious affairs and Indo-Pak border in Amritsar and Tarn Taran.

Close Story

Less time to read?

Try Quickreads

  • Dr Neeraj Pathak was found dead at his residence on May 1. (File photo)

    60-yr-old woman who killed husband by giving electric shocks imprisoned for life

    A 60-year-old assistant professor was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing His wife Mamta's husband, a retired doctor, by inflicting electric shocks. Police arrested professor of chemistry Mamta Pathak for killing her husband Dr Neeraj Pathak, 63, by giving him sleeping pills and inflicting electric shocks on him on May 2, 2021. When police interrogated Mamta, she confessed to the crime.

  • The resolution passed by the Punjab assembly on Thursday said any decision to change the character of Panjab University won’t be acceptable to the people of the state and, therefore, any such proposal should be dropped with immediate effect. (HT file photo)

    Punjab passes resolution against making Panjab University a central varsity

    The Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Thursday passed a resolution against the attempt to change the status of Panjab University into a central university, while strongly urging the Centre not to consider against any change in the nature and character of the institution. All members, except those from the Bharatiya Janata Party, supported the resolution. The resolution was moved by higher education minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer.

  • Fire brigade personnel try to douse the fire at Hathua market in Patna on Thursday. (HT Photo/ Santosh Kumar)

    Bihar: 15 garment shops gutted in Hathua market due to lightning

    At least 15 garment shops were gutted after a major fire broke out on Thursday morning at Hathua, one of the oldest markets in Patna. Property worth crores of rupees were destroyed in the fire, believed to have been caused by lightning. A shopkeeper at the site said the fire broke out around 3:30am. No casualties have been reported so far, and the cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained.

  • Protesters holding a demonstration against the Agnipath recruitment scheme in Amritsar on Thursday. (Sameer Sehgal/HT)

    Punjab assembly passes resolution against Centre’s Agnipath scheme

    The Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Thursday passed a resolution against the Centre's Agnipath defence recruitment scheme. Two BJP legislators Ashwani Sharma and Jangi Lal Mahajan, however, opposed the resolution. The resolution was moved in the House by chief minister Bhagwant Mann. Mann said the scheme had been declared unilaterally and led to nationwide protests and opposition. Shiromani Akali Dal MLA Manpreet Singh Ayali also supported the resolution and demanded the scheme's rollback.

  • Lord Shiva devotees, kanwariyas, undertake an ardous trek from Haridwar on the first day of Shravan month to shrines in their localities. (HT File Photo)

    Kanwar Yatra: Shiva devotees set to start annual trek from July 14

    Uttar Pradesh is preparing for the Kanwar Yatra from July 14, the annual pilgrimage wherein Lord Shiva devotees travel on foot to fetch holy water of the Ganga from Uttarakhand's Haridwar to shrines in their localities, people familiar with the matter said.

Story Saved
Saved Articles
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Thursday, June 30, 2022