| Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia | 12 June 2017 | Asia Samachar |
Manpreet Singh Badal – a politician with an inside view of the Punjab political machanisation for more than two decades and is now the state’s finance minister – will be in Kuala Lumpur next month for the Asean Sikh Economic & Entrepreneurship Summit (ASEES) 2017.
He is the second finance biggie from India coming to the two-day summit after renowned Indian economist Montek Singh Ahluwalia, an influential figure in the administration of the then Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh.
Manpreet will surely add colour to the maiden summit, badged as a flagship initiative of the newly formed Asean Sikh Chamber of Commerce, taking place on 8-9 July. In Punjab, he has been tasked to drive financial and economic changes.
He joins some of the best economic, business and corporate Sikh minds from Southeast Asia in what promises to be a major milestone for the vibrant and lively community in this part of the world.
“Manpreet Singh will be in Kuala Lumpur for the ASEES 2017, wanting to increase trade and bring Asean investors and businessmen to Punjab,” according to a note from the ASEES 2017 organising team.
Manpreet, who turns 55 a fortight after the summit, has travelled an interesting political journey. He had served as the finance minister under Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) supremo Parkash Singh Badal, and is now holding the same post in the administration of Captain Amarinder Singh from the Congress party.
Manpreet’s father, Gurdas Singh Badal, is the elder brother Parkash Singh Badal. The SAD-BJP combine had ruled the Indian state of Punjab for the last two terms but was routed in the March 2017 state elections.
Manpreet’s political journey began when he was elected to Punjab Legislative Assembly in 1995 on the wings of SAD. He kept the seat until 2012.
He served as the finance minister in the SAD-BJP government from 2007 to 2010 when he had a political falling out with his uncle, leading him to launching the People’s Party of Punjab.
In 2014 elections, he lost to his sister-in-law and Akali leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal for the Bathinda seat which he ran on a Congress ticket. In January 2016, he merged his party with Congress, after three meetings with Rahul Gandhi.
Manpreet graduated from St Stephens College in Delhi and subsequently went to University of London to study law.
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