Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Event Pics/Video: Kesri Lehar - “The Wave For Justice” - Submits The Peoples’ Petition To Prime Minister

KESRI LEHAR PRESS RELEASE – 10th December 2012

A contingent of over 750 Kesri Lehar campaigners (including 40 from Leicester) from all over the UK gathered outside the office of the British Prime Minister David Cameron seeking truth, justice, and dignity for all minorities in India.

On the occasion of the 64th anniversary of the adoption and proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, this 10th December 2012, MP’s, Peers of the House of Lords and Human Rights
activists all came together on International Human Rights Day to show unprecedented solidarity with the 118,000 voices who have signed the Kesri Lehar petition.

The focus of the petition is to urge the UK parliament to request India to sign and ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and the UN Charter against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhumane or Degrading treatment or punishment, which encompasses the ‘death penalty’.

The delegation included John Mcdonnell MP, Seema Malhotra MP, Fabian Hamilton MP, Fiona Mctaggart MP, John Spellar MP, Pat Mcfadden MP as well as Dan Jones of Amnesty International UK, Baba Fauja Singh, British centenarian marathon runner, Maggie Bowden of Liberation, Father Yaqoob Kushi of the Voice of Dalit International & Asian Christian Fellowship, Iqbal Singh of Panjabi Human Rights Internet and Ms Baldeesh Kaur representing Kesri Lehar.

India’s human rights record came under renewed international scrutiny during its second Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the UN Human Rights Council on 24 May 2012. Research conducted by Amnesty.

International, NGOs, academic bodies and individuals have all painted a worrying picture of the prevalence of torture and other ill-treatment committed by both official and non-state-actors throughout India." reports Amnesty International.

A letter by John McDonnell, MP was also delivered to David Cameron urging him "To lead the UK government in a renewed effort to persuade the Indian Government to renounce capital punishment and address outstanding human rights abuse concerns."

The letter also states that "The Kesri Lehar campaign was launched by members of the Panjabi community in Britain in response to the continued adherence to the implementation of the death penalty by the Indian government. The petition also highlights the concerns surrounding human rights abuses generally."

Fabian Hamilton MP, the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for British Sikhs praised the Kesri Lehar for mounting the campaign. Speaking to supporters and campaigners Hamilton said, "I declare my support for the campaign and for the issues being raised in the campaign." He applauded the mass petitioning campaign as incredibly successful.

Kesri Lehar held its first parliamentary meeting, Chaired by Labour MP John McDonnell, in Committee Room 12 of the House of Commons. Many MPs, Lords and guest speakers from various minority groups and human rights organisations addressed the meeting.

The speakers highlighted in their speeches the need to put an end to the large-scale gross violations of human rights perpetrated by Union of States Government of India, especially, before it bids for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council.

Rt Hon Jon Ashworth MP from Leicester South Speaks:-

Outside Downing Street

Rt Hon Jon Ashworth MP takes the stage in Parliament, also on Sikh Channel

Multiple distinguished Members of Parliament

Parliament Committee Room 14 full to the rafters, & so was Room 12

Parliament Committee Room 14

Rt Hon Jon Ashworth MP with Leicester delegation members 

Rt Hon Nicky Morgan MP with Leicester delegation members 

Ross from Rt Hon Liz Kendall's MP office with Leicester delegation members 

Monday, 3 December 2012

Sir Edward Garnier QC MP at 'Killa-B' Singh - Q&A Session

On Sun 2nd Dec 2012, the LSA teamed up with Guru Harkrishan Gurdwara (Oadby), supported by Sir Edward Garnier QC MP, to celebrate the achievements and sporting career of local Oadby resident Barinder Singh and raise awareness of the Rik Basra Leukaemia campaign.

Barinder is a former ISKA British, Commonwealth & European Kickboxing Champion. In a one-off Exhibition bout, Barinder will be taking on one of his boxing heroes, a former 2 time world champion Nigel Benn!

To celebrate Barinder’s achievements, Oadby Gurdwara hosted an event entitled, “Meet Barinder ‘Killa-B’ Singh”.  The event kicked off with a Sikh community leader and Sir Edward Garnier recognizing Barinder’s achievements and paying tributes to a local lad done good.  This was followed by a speech from Barinder and a Q&A session with the audience.

The was also utilised to raise further awareness of The Rik Basra Leukaemia Campaign.  The charity held a stall at the event, and Rik himself presented a campaign overview and personal appeal to the audience. Rik said "Right now there are people dying for want of a stem cell donor, the tragedy is it really is so simple to register and donate, we all need to help, look at it as an insurance policy,  one day it could be one of your loved ones in need".   

Barinder ‘Killa-B' Singh said, “A big thank you to Guru Harkrishan Gurdwara for their continued support.  Also a big thank you to the wider Leicester community who have always been behind me!  Respect”.

Event Pics
Surinderpal Rai - Sikh Representative Leicester Faith Leader's Forum

Sir Edward Garnier QC - Member of Parliament for Harborough, Oadby & Wigston

                                                          Barinder 'Killa-B' Singh

                                                                           Rik Basra

                                                                  Audience Shot 1

                                                              Audience Shot 2

                                                  Sir Edward Garnier & Kas Basra

                          Barinder signing up for the Rik Basra Leukemia Campaign

                                         LSA Team with Sir Edward Garnier QC MP

                                            LSA Team with Barinder 'Killa-B' Singh