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Sikhs Unlimited - Book By Khushwant Singh
Introduction To Book 'Sikhs Unlimited' Book By Khushwant Singh
If you were to guess that the inspiration to write a book came from my namesake, the veteran author Khushwant Singh, you would not be totally off the mark. It took just a single meeting with him in December 2004 to gain the courage to attempt a book. The deep-rooted desire to map the lives of some of the most extraordinary Sikhs living abroad, however, is something very close to my own heart: the more famous 'sardar' has nothing to do with it!
Sikhs Unlimited was not planned the way it has finally taken shape. It was intended to be a biography of sorts, but the book soon developed into a travelogue---experiences with and of extraordinary Sikh men and women of the UK and the USA with whom I spent time living, dining, wining and of course, being a witness to the great Punjabi Character.
The Sikhs, a fierce martial race from Punjab---a north-western state in modern India--have shown their trademark buoyancy and are fast becoming important citizens of the international community. They hold decisive positions in almost every field: be it politics, the corporate world, education, social service or the arts.
Following the Sikh trail in 2005 involved changing buses, catching trains and flights to reach fourteen personalities, ranging from artists, musicians, theatre performers, to film directors and entrepreneurs.
Written primarily to celebrate the huge success of the Sikh diaspora in these two countries, the book also intends to inspire Indian youth by presenting them with unique role models from different fields. While the book essentially captures certain lives in an intimate, personal fashion, it is also relevant and important for other reasons: in the new millennium, a fresh challenge seems to have been thrown up to the Sikhs, post 9/11/01 and 7/7/05 terrorist attacks in America and Great Britain, respectively. Sikhs, because of their appearance, have become victims of racial paranoia and are often mistaken for Arabs, especially in the west. In this context, the struggle to maintain their individuality assumes an even greater importance. A community that originally emerged to counter tyranny, Sikhism today is the fifth largest religion of the world. Secondly, the book has living biographies of second and third generation migrants, who, because of their busy schedules, family structure, or physical and social distance have been cut off from their roots. The book, by recognising their achievements, has tried to bridge the gap. In a way it says, 'we are proud of you, please stay in touch.'
And lastly, the book celebrates 'western' Sikhs as having a mainstream identity, as opposed to being perceived as mere followers of the late Harbhajan Singh Yogi. From 1969, a huge number of westerners had adopted the Sikh way of life, inspired by Yogi's teachings.
The entire Sikh diaspora stands at over two and a half million, and this book should in no way be considered as a judgement that the chosen fourteen personalities are the only jewels in this group. Undoubtedly, there are other big achievers and many may have been left out. Some luminaries have been left out deliberately to highlight the achievements of the lesser known ones.
I wish to thank my family members and friends who supported me throughout my work on this book, and forgave me the neglect of my responsibilities as a bread-earner, father, husband, son, brother and pal.
My special thanks to California based Mr Bicky Singh of Sikhpoint.com for making this project possible. A special thanks to noted author Ms Neel Kamal Puri from Chandigarh, who helped me curl the Qs.
Emigrating to the west from the beginning of the twentieth century, the enterprising Sikhs have carved out an exclusive place for themselves in the world, not only as a unique cultural identity, but also through their eminence in various spheres. Sikhs Unlimite showcases the inimitable successes of Sikhs in the UK and the US; and there could be no better time for this commemorative book, when the Sikh diaspora is set to complete a century of its existence in the west.
Through sheer hard work and sharp vision, Sikhs have been able to excel in a foreign and mostly hostile cultural environment. But their links with India have remained ever-strong, as they proudly assert their traditional values in all aspects of life. Following the 'Sikh trail' that included dining, wining and living with the extraordinaire, the author gives a lively and explicit account of their professions and lives in this unusual book.
Fourteen of these successful Sikhs covered in the book include record holder marathon runner Fauja Singh, world-famous Bhangra pop musician Harcharanjit Singh alias Channi, filmmaker Gurinder Chadha, an outstanding chef, a stand-up comedian, a space-tourism entrepreneur, a teenage girl in the US Army, and one of the founders of the BPO industry in India.
Khushwant Singh, thirty-five, is a journalist, who did freelance writing on agriculture issues for the Tribune, before joining the Times of India in 2002. He has studied mass communication from Panjab University and has chosen to write as well as manage his ancestral Kinnow farm in Hoshiarpur, Panjab.
Table Of Contents For 'Sikhs Unlimited' Book By Khushwant Singh
|3.||King of Bhangra Pop||28|
|5.||The Running Baba||51|
|7.||Miss in Action||79|
|9.||Calling the Shots||103|
|10.||Not for the Weak-Hearted||119|
|11.||Adding Value to Life||137|
|13.||Sultan of Outsourcing and Off-shoring||167|
|14.||Keeping America Secure||184|
Sikhs Unlimited - Book By Khushwant Singh
- Brand: Rupa Publications
- Product Code: SPE133
- Page: 312
- Format: Hardbound
- Language: English
- Availability: Out Of Stock
- You Save: Rs.49.50 or 10.00%
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