FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 18, 2016, Vancouver – Manjot Hallen, a Partner at Vancouver’s personal injury law firm Warnett Hallen LLP, is deeply honoured to be personally invited and present at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s formal apology for the Komagata Maru incident. The incident, in which 376 South Asian travellers were refused entry into Canada after failing to meet Canada’s discriminatory immigration requirements at the time, sparked unrest amongst Sikhs both in Canada and India at the time.
Hallen says of the event, which is being held in the House of Commons today, “I’m always a proud Canadian, but even more proud, if that’s possible, on days like today. It shows how far we have come as a country. My ancestors and the people on that ship could have never dreamt that Sikhs and South Asians would hold some of the highest offices in this country. It’s a proud moment for me, being the first Indo-Canadian President of the Liberal Party of Canada (BC) and it is a proud moment for all Canadians.”
In 1914, the SS Komagata Maru left India with 376 passengers, mainly Sikh, and stopped in Hong Kong before arriving in Vancouver. This was a direct challenge to Canada’s immigration rules at the time, which were designed to deny entrance to people from India. After being turned away by officials in Vancouver’s port, the ship returned to India where a violent confrontation with British authorities, sparked by the incident in Canada, left 19 people dead. The incident highlighted Canada’s discrimination against South Asians, and was used as a rallying point by Indian nationalists.
In 2008, the Harper government apologized for the incident at the Ghadri Babiyan Da Mela festival in Surrey, BC but there were calls from the Sikh community asking that the government issue the apology formally in Parliament. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced in April he would offer a full apology in the House of Commons.
Hallen heads the Liberal Party of Canada (BC) since March of this year. He has been practicing personal injury and car accident law since 2005, and is a member of the Canadian Bar Association, Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia and the South Asian Bar Association (BC).
About Warnett Hallen LLP
Warnett Hallen LLP is a boutique personal injury law firm based in Vancouver, and headed by Paul Warnett and Manjot Hallen. We focus on providing exceptional service, a relaxed, caring atmosphere, and a depth of legal experience that allows us to help you “Settle for More” if you have been injured in a personal injury accident. As a personal injury law firm, Warnett Hallen LLP is committed to supporting personal injury victims in all possible ways, which includes taking concrete, meaningful action to eradicate preventable accidents before they happen. Please visit us at warnetthallen.com. Follow us on Twitter @warnetthallen.
For more information, please contact:
Manjot Hallen, Partner, Warnett Hallen
Tel: 604 733 3300
Andrea Potter, Marketing
Tel: 604 813 6022