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Trudeau's cabinet brings pride to Sikh community

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said this week his newly named cabinet "looked like Canada," and the diversity goes much further than appointing an equal number of men and women.

Minister of Defence Harjit Singh Sajjan among 4 Sikhs named to top jobs by new PM

Indo-Canadian community makes strides into top political posts 2:06

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said this week his newly named cabinet "looked like Canada," and the diversity goes much further than appointing an equal number of men and women.

Four Sikhs — a big portion of Trudeau's smaller cabinet — were among the 30 ministers sworn in on Wednesday.

Two of them wear turbans and hold powerful ministries, most notably Minister of Defence Harjit Singh Sajjan. 

Sajjan's appointment is widely seen as the most symbolically powerful, according to Bupinder Hundal, a Vancouver journalist who covers the Sikh community. 

"A man in a turban and a beard responsible for a Western country's military — that sends a real strong message, and in the community that's a real sense of pride," he said. 

Others named to cabinet include:

  • Amarjeet Sohi, minister of infrastructure and communities.
  • Bardish Chagger, minister of small business and tourism.
  • Navdeep Bains, minister of science and economic development.
Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan was a lieutenant-colonel with the Canadian Armed Forces and a Vancouver police gang crime unit detective. Of the four Sikh ministers named to the federal cabinet this week, Sajjan's appointment is widely seen as the most symbolically powerful. (Twitter)

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