Wednesday, 31 December 2008
Gurbax Singh Malhi, born October 12 1949 in Chugha Kalan, Punjab, India is a Canadian politician. Malhi was the first "turbaned Sikh" elected to parliament anywhere in the western world. Prior to 1993, Canadian law prohibited members of parliament from wearing headgear of any sort in the Commons. Malhi's insistence on wearing a turban caused the law to be changed shortly after the election. He is currently a member of the Canadian House of Commons and represents the riding of Bramalea—Gore—Malton for the Liberal Party. When Paul Martin became the Prime Minister in 2003, he appointed Malhi as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry, with special emphasis on Entrepreneurs and New Canadians. After the 2004 election, he was named Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, and later was named the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue. Malhi has introduced numerous Sikh ceremonies to the Canadian Parliament (including an annual Akhand Path and a Diwali celebration). He was also instrumental in having the government of Canada produce a postage stamp bearing the khanda symbol.