2 Amritdhari GurSikhs become ministers in the newly elected Canadian government.
Two Amritdhari (initiated Sikhs) named in the Canadian cabinet today after an election that saw the following Canadian Sikhs elected, including 5 who wear turbans, 5 women, and 4 who have been named cabinet members:
Harjit Singh Sajjan was sworn in as Minister of National Defense; Navdeep Singh Bains was appointed as Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.
Harjit Sajjan immigrated to Canada from India with his family when he was five years old.
Having grown up in South Vancouver, Harjit benefitted from everything this diverse and culturally rich community had to offer. While attending local elementary and high schools, Harjit was active in many of the sporting and athletic programs.
Harjit is married to Dr. Kuljit Kaur Sajjan, a UBC-educated family doctor, and together they have two young children.
Harjit Sajjan has four operational deployments; one to Bosnia and three deployments to Afghanistan. He has been awarded the following honours in recognition of his service to Canada:
Order of Military Merit
Meritorious Service Medal
Southwest Asia Service Medal (Afghanistan)
General Campaign Star (Afghanistan)
Mention in Dispatch
Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal
NATO Service Medal (Bosnia)
Golden Jubilee Medal
Diamond Jubilee Medal
Canadian Forces’ Decoration
US Army Commendation Medal
Chief of Defence Staff Commendation
Deputy Minister Award (Department of National Defence)
Harjit Sajjan was a member of the Vancouver Police Department for 11 Years serving in South Vancouver and was selected as a Detective for the Gang Crime Unit. Harjit has long been advocating for education and mentorship programs that engage the youth to become more active members of society, while strengthening youth defense against the rule of gangs and drugs.
Born in a small village in India, Harjit learned the importance of the very basic human necessities at a young age. He is immensely grateful for the privilege of being a Canadian and now participates in humanitarian efforts where ever he can make a difference. He and his wife have four sponsored children and support many charities that promote health and education to impoverished children.
Mississauga-Malton MP Navdeep Singh Bains has been named Canadian Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.
Having served as the MP for Mississauga-Brampton South from 2004 to 2011, Bains, 38, a long-time Trudeau friend and advisor, gained extensive experience as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and as the Liberal Critic in a number of portfolios.
Bains, a former Brampton resident and Turner Fenton Secondary School graduate, was the first MP for Mississauga-Brampton South when that riding was created in 2004 and, after last month’s election,he returns to Ottawa to serve as the first MP for Mississauga-Malton 11 years later.
Bains, an accountant/financial analyst and visiting professor at Ryerson University, said in a tweet he’s “honoured” to be Canada’s next Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.