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UK elections: Preet Kaur Gill becomes first Sikh woman elected to Parliament

Gill, a candidate for the Labour party, is expected to focus on Sikh issues after the community rallied behind her

world Updated: Jun 09, 2017 08:47 IST
UK elections,Preet Gill,British Sikh MP
Labour councillor Preet Kaur Gill with British Sikh centenarian marathon runner Fauja Singh in a photo she tweeted on April 8.(Twitter)

Britain elected its first female Sikh MP, results of the June 8 mid-term elections showed on Friday.

Preet Kaur Gill won the Edgbaston seat as a Labour Party candidate, defeating ruling Conservative party’s Caroline Squire, according to reports.

Gill, a councillor from Sandwell, will be the first Sikh woman in the UK House of Commons.

Gill was born and brought up in Edgbaston, a seat that was held by her Labour colleague Gisela Stuart by a slim margin of 2,706 votes.

Gill was selected to replace Stuart by the Labour National Executive Committee’s (NEC) interview panel on April 28.

“I am delighted I have been given the opportunity to become the next MP for Edgbaston where I was born and raised. I want to engage with the people of Edgbaston and with hard work, passion and determination I think we can achieve great things together,” she had said then, according to PTI.

Gill has served as a board member of the Sikh Network, which she believes has provided her with a unique platform and opportunity in the last two years to raise her political profile.

Gill is expected to focus on issues related to the Sikh community, the fourth largest faith group in the United Kingdom.

The Sikh Federation (the UK) was among her most prominent backers.

The United Kingdom went to polls on June 8 after Prime Minister Theresa May unexpectedly called snap elections seven weeks ago to increase the slim majority she had inherited from predecessor David Cameron.

Early indications on Friday said the move may have backfired, with her Conservative party on track to lose its majority.

First Published: Jun 09, 2017 08:45 IST