Ontario, Canada: 38-year-old Jagmeet Singh becomes the first non-white leader of the left-wing New Democratic Party of Canada. Justin Trudeau’s new rival is also an activist of people of colour and the LGBT community.
Soon after getting elected with 53.6% of the votes on Sunday, social media savvy, Singh tweeted that he was launching his campaign to become the next prime minister in the next federal election in Canada scheduled for October 2019, reported Times of India.
While speaking to TOI about how being a brown guy with a headgear, he was often stopped for random police checks, which motivated him to find a way to deal with issues of unfairness and injustice.
“This sensitivity has shaped my politics by developing a strong desire to challenge injustice and work towards creating a more equitable society,” said Singh, a lawyer by profession.
He advocates flexibility of laws, for example, the religious exemption for Sikhs from the motorcycle helmet law. Believing in ‘to celebrate one’s identity’, he said: “I hope that by celebrating my identity, it encourages others to celebrate their own.”
His colourful turbans have got him to the pages of fashion magazines like GQ.
Singh was born in 1979 in Scarborough, Ontario, to immigrant parents from Punjab. Grew up in St John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador and Windsor, Ontario and obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from the University of Western Ontario in 2001.
He also has a Bachelor of Laws degree from York University’s Osgoode Hall Law School in 2005. Singh worked as a criminal defence lawyer in the Greater Toronto Area before entering politics.