Sardar Tarlochan Singh receives Jewel of Punjab award

Singh, former Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities, received the coveted award from Minister of State for External Affairs Preenet Kaur at the 10th Anniversary Gala Celebrations of the World Punjabi Organisation (European Division) at the Inter-Continental Hotel here last night.

Previous recipients of the award included Bollywood star Dev Anand and leading NRI industrialist Lord Swraj Paul.The Arora brothers, Subash and Surinder, leading London hoteliers, received special award for Excellence in Business and Charitable activities.
Receiving the award, Tarlochan Singh emphasised the need for teaching "our children not only about the rich culture and traditions of India but also about rich Indo-British relations."

He said the new generation should know that "we Punjabi Sikhs gave our blood to this country during World War I and II. 90,000 Sikhs died for this country. The children should know that their forefathers gave blood to this country and fought for its democracy."
Britain's Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills Dr Vince Cable, who was the Chief Guest, said India has made "staggering progress" under the leadership of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh" and "British Government wants to develop proper relations with India and step up economic cooperation" between the two countries.
Kaur noted that President Pratibha Patil's visit to the UK and British Prime Minister David Cameron's tour to India have "surely enhanced the bilateral relations and elevated the partnership to a new level."

"We were absolutely delighted when Prime Minister Cameron spoke boldly about the terror from across the country and the support he extended to India on this vital issue. We have to jointly fight this menace together."

Prominent among those present on the occasion included Lord Swraj Paul, Virendra Sharma, Labour MP, Shailesh Vara, Conservative MP, Lord Diljit Rana, Raj Loomba, Founder chairman of the Loomba Trust and Kartar Singh Lalvani, leading NRI entrepreneur and founder chairman of the Vitabiotics.

Ranjit Singh Baxi, President of the WPO (European division), said the non-political, international body has established an Education Scholarship at the University of East London to support post-graduate education for visiting students from India.

Vikramjit Singh Sahney, International President of WPO, said the organisation would launch a Punjab Parliamentary Forum in Delhi on January 10 and Prime Minister Singh has already given his support to the Forum.

In a message, Leader of the Liberal Democrats and Deputy Prime Minister of Britain Nick Clegg lauded the contribution of the Punjabi community in the UK to Britain's economic, social and cultural life

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