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article imageOttawa couple thrilled with Canadian government Xmas gift

By Ken Hanly     Dec 25, 2015 in Politics
Ottawa - When Bhavna Bajaj filed her paperwork for permanent residency in Canada in 2011, she was pregnant, but failed to report that on her application. As a result she had to spend three years trying to have her son join her and her husband in Canada.
Bajaj found out she was pregnant while she and her husband Aman Sood were filing papers to emigrate to Canada under the skilled worker program. Bajaj is a lab technician. Their son Daksh was born in June of 2011.
The couple in fact made two errors. The couple were told by an immigration consultant that they could sponsor their son after they had settled down in their jobs in Canada. They were granted residency in 2013 but when they arrived in Canada they were told they had broken the law by not revealing that they had a child in India. The couple was required to update their family status to immigration authorities and anyone not included in the update was not eligible for sponsorship. The couple said they had to sign a declaration never to sponsor Daksh in order to be allowed in as permanent residents.
The minister of immigration could allow an exception to the rules on humanitarian or compassionate grounds but the Conservative immigration minister refused to do so. Bajaj met with the new immigration minister, John McCallum, last Tuesday to present her case.
On Wednesday, she was hard at work doing routine lab tests when the phone rang: “This is Immigration Minister John McCallum. I have some good news for you.” The news was that her son Daksh would be granted a temporary resident permit. Bajaj said: “My mouth just opened. I knew the good news could only be about my boy. All I remember is I kept thanking the immigration minister, telling him this is the best Christmas gift for us ever.The old government ignored us all this time. The new government listened and did this in no time. We are just so thankful. We’d been praying and praying, and our prayer was answered by this government. We wanted to thank everyone who has supported us through it all.”
The lawyer for the couple, Hadayt Nazami claimed the decision to be " a breath of fresh air in a system long held hostage to ideological practices by the former Conservative government,." Her husband Aman will take a later flight from India where he is visiting her son. He will escort the boy home. She is busy decorating Daksh's bedroom and will have lots of balloons and toys to welcome him at the airport.
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