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[Report] Park named after Canada’s first turbaned Punjabi MP

Posters of his first campaign were removed from this location

Malhi is proud to be the first-turbaned Sikh MP in Canada

PHOTO: COURTESY OF Patrick Brown -Twitter

Malhi is proud to be the first-turbaned Sikh MP in Canada PHOTO: COURTESY OF Patrick Brown -Twitter

Photo: ਧੰਨਵਾਦ ਸਾਹਿਤ ਪੈਟ੍ਰਿਕ ਬ੍ਰਾਊਨ ਟਵਿੱਟਰ

RCI

A Brampton park has been named after Gurbaksh Malhi, a Punjabi MP who served for 6 consecutive terms. Malhi is proud to be first turbaned Sikh MP in Canada. Rhapsody Park, located on Burlwood Road in Brampton, has been renamed in his honour.

Gurbaksh Malhi said that the event is a matter of pride for the entire community. “All of this has been possible because of the people in the community who voted for me many times to become a member Parliament. During my tenure as MP, I have carried out many projects in the city, which have been much appreciated by the people of this area.

When I participated in my first elections in 1993, there was nothing here. My supporters put up posters, and representatives of the city administration asked us to remove them. Many years later, the same space has been turned into a park, and it now bears my name,” stated Gubaksh Malhi, Former MP.

Malhi, who came to Canada in 1975, was interested in politics back in Punjab, and worked as a volunteer during the elections. He was first elected as a Liberal MP in 1993 and remained in office for 18 consecutive years. Malhi is not currently active in politics.

Harkirat Singh, a Brampton councillor of Punjabi descent, proposed the name change during a City Council meeting.

I made the motion earlier this year and it passed unanimously, said Harkirat Singh. According to the rules, the city communicates with the general public to seek its opinion. The event raised the profile of the community and created great excitement, with many people joining in for the occasion.

Politicians of Punjabi descent continue to be respected in Canada. A street in the city of Winnipeg has been named Cheema Drive, after Dr. Gulzar Cheema. Born in India, Cheema is proud to be Canada’s first MLA, after winning the election in Winnipeg’s Maples Riding back in 1988.

Dr. Cheema later moved to British Columbia, where he won the MLA election. There he later served as Minister of State for Mental Health Services and Minister of State for Immigration and Multicultural Services.

A photograph of Dr. Gulzar Cheema and others present at the naming ceremony of Cheema Drive.
PHOTO: RADIO-CANADA / ZOÉ LE GALLIC-MASSIE

A photograph of Dr. Gulzar Cheema and others present at the naming ceremony of Cheema Drive. PHOTO: RADIO-CANADA / ZOÉ LE GALLIC-MASSIE

Photo: Radio-Canada / Zoé Le Gallic-Massie

City Mayor Patrick Brown, councillors and city residents were also present at the event.

Sarbmeet Singh

Posted: December 8, 2021, 3:14 p.m.

This report by our reporter Sarbmeet Singh has been translated from Punjabi to English.

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