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Canada’s Jagmeet Singh emerges as potential rival to Justin Trudeau

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Jagmeet Singh
Jagmeet Singh

Could Jagmeet Singh become the first nonwhite politician to climb Canada’s political hierarchy?

SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — Despite the fact it rests as one of the Western world’s most diverse nations, Canada has not seen nonwhite politicians climb the ranks of its government very high.

In fact, no nonwhite politician has ever been elected to lead a Canadian provincial government — India-born Ujjal Dosanjh briefly inherited British Columbia’s premiership in 2000-2001, but was unseated in a landslide. Until Naheed Nenshi was elected in Calgary in 2010, no major Canadian city had seen a nonwhite mayor.

Jagmeet Singh is out to break that trend.

Last Monday, the two-term member of the Ontario parliament announced publicly his bid to become head of the New Democratic Party (NDP) of Canada. If successful, he would instantly become the first nonwhite leader of a major Canadian political party and the first Canadian of color to offer himself as a candidate for prime minister.

Singh’s jump to the national scene will introduce an unprecedented variable of race in Canadian politics. His status as a symbol of social progress has strong potential to undercut the narrative of the man who has, until now, been content to embody all that’s admirable about liberal Canada — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Even without his surname, he would have presented as a complicated rival for Trudeau. At 38 years old, Singh is younger than the youthful PM, and has a public brand equally defined by style, sex appeal and social-media savvy.

It’s impossible to grasp Singh’s disruptive power without appreciating his identity-politics cred in an identity-politics-obsessed age. Singh’s campaign launch speech put his status as a champion of the marginalized front and center, describing it as a natural outgrowth of his  difficult upbringing as a first-generation Canadian bullied for his “funny-sounding name, brown skin and long hair.”

Since Canadian politics operates under such a firm, three-party system, the dynamics of Canadian elections often feel like studies in game theory, with visibly zero-sum gains and losses. Because of this, a Singh-led NDP introduces a clear risk: In the 2019 election, he could undoubtedly hurt Trudeau’s Liberals but, lacking any obvious appeal to center-right voters, could also potentially polarize the entire center-left electorate.

 

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Biden & Trump hold separate town halls on debate night

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Biden & Trump hold separate town halls on debate night | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON (Diya TV)  — It was supposed to be debate night, a second battle between former Vice President Biden and President Trump. But after the President’s COViD-19 diagnosis, an in person battle wasn’t in the cards. The President did not want to do a virtual debate, so both men held separate town halls at the exact same time to try and win over voters with less than three weeks before the election and millions of people already casting their ballots early.

Many of the biggest Desi names in entertainment got together for a virtual ‘South Asian Block Party’ to support the Biden-Harris campaign. In just a couple hours, $250,000 was raised, with a number of the prominent figures sharing their personal stories on why they are supporting the Biden ticket.

Pakistan’s government has banned TikTok, citing complaints alleging the popular video app carried immoral and indecent content.

Simran Sethi, ABC TV’s Executive Vice President of Development and Content Strategy, is putting in place a new set of inclusion standards to ensure the television network accurately reflects society.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Indian American professor missing near Mt. Rainier

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Indian American professor missing near Mt. Rainier | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — Sam Dubal, an Indian American anthropology professor at the University of Washington, has been missing for days, according to his sister, UC Hastings law professor Veena Dubal. Sam is said to have gone on an overnight hike and backpacking trip near Mount Rainier in Washington state. Park rangers have found his car, but there is still no sign of him. If you hear about his whereabouts, you are asked to call 360-569-6684.

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Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee began a week of confirmation hearings for US Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. Judge Barrett praised the legacies of Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia. Judiciary Chair Lindsey Graham set the agenda and defended his decision to move Barrett’s nomination forward. Barrett could become the first justice placed on the court right before a Presidential election.

Actress Mindy Kaling took the occasion of being on the “Late Show with Stephen Colbert” to announce she just gave birth to a baby boy named Spencer in September. It’s the second child for Kaling, who told Colbert her daughter Katherine reconnected her to Hinduism after her birth.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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President Trump & First Lady contract COVID-19

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President Trump & First Lady contract COVID-19 | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON (Diya TV)  — The world’s attention is focused on the health of President Trump and the first lady after they disclosed they both have the coronavirus. The President is 74 years old and is considered in a high risk category. White House spokespeople say the President was flown to Walter Reed Medical Center for observation and will be there for a few days out of “an abundance of caution.” Sources close to the situation say the President is experiencing a low-grade fever and that he took an experimental drug cocktail to boost his immune system. The First Lady, Melania Trump, remains at the White House. Trump confidants Hope Hicks, Kellyanne Conway and Bill Stepien also contracted the virus.

Well wishes for the President are coming in from around the globe, with one of the first messages of support coming from Indian Prime Minister Modi.

There are tributes around the U.S. to mark Mahatma Gandhi’s 151st birth anniversary. Political leaders sent their well wishes and there was a ceremony at the Indian Embassy in Washington to commemorate the occasion.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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