Pakistan’s first Sikh MPA to work for non muslim minorities

June 4, 2013 by  
Filed under newsletter-asia

Pakistan’s first Sikh MPAPakistan, June 03, 2013: A Sikh representative has taken oath as a Member of the Provisional Assembly (MPA) in Pakistan Punjab for the first time since the Islamic nation was formed in 1947.Sardar Ramesh Singh Arora was nominated on a seat reserved for minorities on a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) ticket.

On June 1, Arora made history when he entered the assembly hall in a traditional white shalwar kamees and an orange turban.

Several parliamentarians and assembly officials welcomed him by shaking hands as his family and friends watched.

“As the first Sikh to have taken oath as a parliamentarian in the Punjab Assembly since 1947, I am absolutely delighted to be part of this august house,” Arora told The Express Tribune after taking the oath.

He said he would represent all minority communities in the province, not just Sikhs.

Arora, who hails from Narowal in the province, has been associated with the Pakistan Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee that oversees the working of Sikh temples.

He said that he would work for the rehabilitation of historical and religious sites of the Sikhs and other religions through the Evacuee Trust Property Board.

The Sikh MPA noted that work on the reformation of the Gurudwara Parbhandhak Committee was underway. The reform would help the committee to become more effective and efficient, he added.

“I will do the best I can to serve minorities. That is my aim and my party’s policy. That is why I’m here and that is what my oath was about,” Arora said.

PML-N led by Nawaz Sharif secured 125 seats in the National Assembly of Pakistan in the latest general elections held in May. It gained super majority in the Provincial Assembly of Punjab.


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