Tuesday, December 25, 2007
At this time of the year, we're all supposed to be infused with the Christmas spirit--good cheer to all mankind and all that.
But the case of Laibar Singh is creating the opposite effect as the fuss over his deportation continues to rankle many.
Here are the facts: Laibar Singh entered Canada in 2003 on a forged passport.
He applied, unsuccessfully, for refugee status. Before being deported, Singh suffered an aneurysm that left him paralyzed.
Since then, federal immigration officials have been trying to deport him and his supporters in the Sikh community have been shuffling him around from gurdwara to gurdwara.
An attempt to deport him last Monday failed, as supporters blocked his van at Vancouver International Airport.
Now Singh is in Surrey, his supporters sniping about the amount of effort required to provide care, immigration officials still wanting him out and the public, at large, wondering why Canada never seems to deport anyone.
Put simply, Singh should be sent home.
He entered the country illegally, there was no grounds found for refugee status and Canadians have no obligation to support him.
An application for him to stay based on humanitarian and compassionate grounds was rejected.
But let's remember, we're sending him back to a democracy, a fellow member of the Commonwealth and he will be cared for in one of the country's top hospitals.
It's time we stopped being so patronizing toward other nations.
Singh is an Indian citizen and they are quite capable of looking after him.
The real question, as always, is why it takes immigration officials so long to deport people.
Not to be callous, but if immigration officials had done their job, we wouldn't be having this discussion.
It might not be in the spirit of the season, but Laibar Singh needs to go home for the holidays.
© Chilliwack Times 2007
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