Confirmed: UK Councillor Varinder Singh appointed to Europe’s oldest political body

22 Sep

London, Sept 22, 2016 (Yes Punjab News)
The UK Government has confirmed that Councillor Varinder Singh, 27, from the London Borough of Redbridge will be joining the UK delegation to the Congress of the Council of Europe.

The Council of Europe, is Europe’s oldest political body aiming to uphold human rights, democracy and the rule of law across the continent. The Congress of the Council of Europe is the pan-European political assembly represents over 200,000 local and regional authorities in 47 European states.

The assembly concentrates mainly on assessing the situation of local democracy and actively promotes the principles of local democracy outside Europe. In recent years the assembly has held thematic debates on issues such as the fight against radicalisation, cities against terrorism, migrations, the protection of cultural heritage and adopts recommendations and resolutions.

The UK Government appoints the UK delegation from nominations made by the devolved administrations and UK local government associations. The UK has one of the largest delegations in the Congress with its members playing an important role in contributing to policy formulations, election monitoring and development of local democracy in Europe.

Councillor Varinder Singh’s name was put forward by the UK’s Local Government Association before being approved by the UK Government.

Commenting on the appointment, Cllr Varinder Singh said: “It’s a great privilege to be joining the UK delegation to the Congress of the Council of Europe, especially at a time when we are seeing democracy, human rights and the rule of law being undermined as well as growing public scepticism towards European politics.

“I want to help shape Europe and ensure that progressive voices continue to play a constructive role in delivering for local communities.

He further added: “Despite the outcome of the EU referendum result, we can still work towards achieving the UK’s goals in Europe on improving human rights, democracy and respect for the rule of law.”

An advocate of greater European co-operation, Varinder Singh was one of 71 British Indian councillors from across the UK have publicly pledged their support for the cross-party ‘British Indians for IN’ campaign.