Happy 69th Independence Day, Israel

Sydney, May 2, 2017

I was privileged to be invited to join Jewish community of NSW for the celebration of 69th Independence Day of Israel at Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney.

Premier of NSW, Gladys Berejiklian, NSW Leader of Opposition, Luke Foley, many ministers and MPs, key community and business leaders were among approx 500  invited guests.

Israel is the only successful and working democracy in the Middle East.

Israel is a world leader in innovation in the field of Defence, health, water and agriculture.

I am a friend and supporter of Israel, just like millions of Indians all over the world.

Best of Israel: https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=qeVvuph2WAQ

Happy 69th Independence Day, Israel!

Dr Yadu Singh



Sydney’s Premiere of Viceroy’s House 

Sydney, 29 April, 2017

It was a pleasure and privilege to be at the premiere of Viceroy’s House at Event Cinemas, Castle Hill, today, 29 April, 2017. 

This is a superb movie directed by renowned director, Gurinder Chadha of Bend It Like Beckham fame.

The cast include Hugh Bonneville (Lord Mountbatten), Gillian Anderson (Lady Mountbatten), Huma Qureshi (Alia), Manish Dayal (Jeet Kumar) and Om Puri (Alia’s father), Denzil Smith (Mr M.A. Jinnah) and Tanveer Ghani (Pandit JL Nehru) among others.  

All actors, especially Hugh Bonneville, Huma Qureshi and Manish Dayal delivered splendid performances. Very impressive acting indeed. I was totallly spellbound with the pace and the plot of the movie, with intense emotion and interest. 

Director, Gurinder Chadha, is a thoroughly down-to-earth person, who interacted with people and had pictures with everyone. 

I was pleasantly surprised to know that her uncle, Balwant Singh Chadha, whom I have known for many years, lives in Sydney. He introduced me to her. 

This is an excellent movie with fantastic direction, acting and picturisation. 

It is based on tragic events surrounding partition of India. Gurinder ji and her family, like many other families, were affected by the tragedy of partition, which displaced many millions of people and killed about a million people. 

Strongly recommended.  8/10 from me. 

Coming to Cinemas in Australia from May 18. 

Dr Yadu Singh



Journalists must understand journalism

Sydney, April 24, 2017

When I look around and think about those who claim to be “journalists”, I don’t see many who are true journalists.

They don’t seem to understand that journalism means being:

  1. Objective
  2. Unbiased
  3. Non-political
  4. Fair
  5. Factual
  6. Relevant
  7. Responsible
  8. Having integrity
  9. Fearless
  10. Aware

To make it worse, some are in bed with scumbags and political parties, and are into promotional activities for third rate people, giving them all sorts of awards.

When pointed out, they are unable to understand what is being pointed out and why. This shouldn’t be surprising because of their lack of training as journalists and knowledge and understanding of ethics.

My comments are not about every journalist because there are many great ones, but they are definitely about many (substandard ones) who are around us and with whom we deal with on a daily basis. I am sure you will get a gist.

I hope they will take these comments as healthy criticism and as a plea to reflect on whether they are fulfilling the parameters of ethical journalism, and to make amends, if they are not.

Dr Yadu Singh



1.5 million people were killed in Armenian Genocide 102 years ago 

Sydney, April 24, 2017

1.5 million Armenians were killed by the Ottomans in Turkey. It was a regime-directed and regime-prosecuted genocide, starting 102 years ago on 24 April in 1915.

I attended the 100 years anniversary commemoration of Armenian Genocide at the Town Hall, Sydney in 2015, and heard the details of this sad saga, which was the outcome of religious intolerance and hatred.

Details: http://time.com/4748833/the-promise-armenia-1915-history/


Let us remember and reflect, and stand with the Armenians all over the Globe.

Dr Yadu Singh



457 Visa class terminated

Sydney, April 18, 2017

457 class Visa

Malcolm Turnbull TwitterAustralian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull and Immigration and Border Protection Minister, Peter Dutton, announced today that they have abolished Temporary Worker (Skilled) Visa (subclass 457),  effective immediately.

457 Visa will be replaced by two new temporary Visa classes, which will allow employers and businesses to hire a skilled person from overseas provided they can’t find a suitably skilled local person.

People who will get these visas must have relevant work experience of at least 2 years, have better English proficiency and pass criminal check. This is to ensure that only the best people get this visa.

One of these new classes will be for a shorter period of 2 years. After the conclusion of 2 years, the employees will not be able to apply for PR visa.

Another of the new visa will be able for 4 years, if they have a minimum relevant work experience of 2 years, fulfil tougher English proficiency test and clear the criminal and background check, the criteria which are not applicable for current 457 visa presently.

Fees for both these new visa ($1,150  for 2 years Visa and $2,400 for 4 years Visa) will be higher than what is the case presently. Special concessions in a variety of ways and manners will continue to be available for regional Australia.

Out of about 600 categories of occupations in the list for 457 visa, about 200 categories will be removed.

A minimum wage will be fixed to stop unfair advantage to overseas employees when it comes to wages.

Employers will have to do a mandatory labour testing of the job market and offer the job to a suitably skilled Australian (or a PR visa holder), before such job can go to an overseas person.

Employers and businesses, who employ overseas workers would be required to contribute some funds for training of local people.

As of September, 2016, there are about 95,000 primary 457 visa holders and about 76,000 secondary 457 visa holders (family members of primary 457 visa holders).

Indians constitute about 25% of the total 457 visas, followed by the British at 20% and people from People’s Republic of China (PRC) at about 5%.

Total 457 visa holders are less than 1% of total workers in Australia.

Peter Dutton TwitterMinister for Immigration and Border Protection, Peter Dutton, confirmed that these changes will not affect those who are already holding 457 visa, and current 457 visa holders will be able to apply for the PR visa at the end of their 4 years employment.

The new visa category will be finalised in March 2018, and will be implemented immediately.

It is expected that the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) will release more details in days to weeks from now.

More details: http://www.news.com.au/national/politics/prime-minister-malcolm-turnbull-has-banned-457-visas/news-story/7064434e051073a0882a3e11dd8bc87f



Rob Harris, journalist from the Herald Sun newspaper has posted following information about which categories are excluded from sponsored visa categories.

List of removed occupations: https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Work/Work/Skills-assessment-and-assessing-authorities/skilled-occupations-lists/removed-skilled-occupations

It is well-known that 457 Visa system was scammed by many employers and businesses. Many times, employers were not testing the market for the availability of suitably skilled local people. Even worse, many employers and businesses were taking money for sponsoring people on 457 visa. Market rates for such bribe ranged from $40,000 to 70,000. I personally know an example of a so-called businessman, who also masquerades as community leader, who took $150,000 from 3 people to sponsor them for 457 visa. Despite this, he didn’t do the proper job, before selling his business to someone else. The new owner demanded money again. Victims contacted a few of us (4 people), seeking assistance. You should not be surprised to know that this particular “businessman” has been given an “Excellence in community service” award by an association. Another example is that of a “businessman” who is known as a “Go to” man in the community for arranging the “match making” for this type of visa. Obviously, he makes his money from not only the “sponsoted” employee, but also from the one who “sponsors” the “employee”. Many of this type of “businesspeople” are often awarded “role model of the community” titles and are listed in Who is Who columns in the communities, because of variety of reasons, none of which can be called genuine or clean. Some foolish Government ministers include them in their delegations and these people are often seen around political leaders to create an impression of their high connections to scare the victims and stop them from complaining to authorities.

There is no doubt that quite a lot of employers, likely to be the majority, sponsor right type of people on 457 visa for the right reasons and act ethically, but it’s undeniable that corruption and rorting are rampant. Exploitation for some of these visa holders is not uncommon. There  is always a sword of the threat of cancelling the sponsorship hanging over 457 visa holders, if they did not do and pay what employers wanted. Once this sponsorship gets cancelled, the employee must find a new  sponsor within 60 days, which is very difficult, if not impossible in many cases.

This behavior not only harms the Australian job seekers, because they miss out on a job, but it also promotes corruption and creates exploitation-based employment industry. This also contributes to cash economy, because the money exchange involved in this, by necessity, is in cash form.

There are already comments from the opposition and Unions that these changes are not enough and are just window dressing.  Looking at the changes, one thing becomes obvious that the shorter term visa  (2 years variety) is likely to be used only for genuine employees.  Nobody is going to pay for a sponsorship which doesn’t lead to PR visa at the end of the sponsored job. Let us see what outcome these changes deliver. Their efficacy in tackling 457 visa rorts will become clear in due course.

I am of the firm opinion that Labour market testing to see if an Australian worker is available before hiring someone from overseas should be done independently, as recommended by the John Azarius inquiry. It is hard to rely on such testing by the employers themselves.

In my view any action to control and eradicate the corruption is welcome. In fact, I believe that Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) should do everything including strengthening the resources for surveillance, investigation and prosecution against those who are involved in the rorting of sponsored visa programmes, They will have a better chance to catch the scammers if DIBP gives protection, including offering Justice visa, to the victims, to encourage them to testify and provide the necessary evidence against the visa scammers.

I hope that these changes make the sponsored jobs programme good and fair for Australia and Australians, as well as those who apply for this visa. Anything which cleans this visa programme is certainly going to be better than what we have today.

The programme for the obvious reasons will need regular reviewing and fine tuning to make it effective and to be meeting the needs of Australia

Dr Yadu Singh



Indian Badminton coming of age and progressing well

Sydney/16 April, 2016

Indian badminton appears to be coming of age and progressing well. Both players in the final of Singapore Super Series on Sunday, 16 April were Indian. Sai Praneeth defeated Srikantha Kidambi  in 3 sets.

They both are trained by the legendary coach, Pullela Gopichand in Hyderabad, India.

Congratulations, Sai Praneeth for a fantastic win. Commiserations. Srikanth Kidambi . You played extremely well. 

They both are champions, and have brought laurels to India.

India is participating in Sudirman Cup 2017, held at Gold Coast from 21-27 May, 2017. I am not sure which Indian players are participating in the matches, but I hope Praneeth and Srikanth are playing. Their participation would give India a competitive edge.

It is well known that Badminton is a hugely popular sport in India, and is 2nd only to Cricket. Recent successes of Indian Shuttlers will only increase the popularity of Badminton in India.

Dr Yadu Singh