Society U.K. (Regd)
Featherstone Road. Southall, Middx, U.K. UB2 5AA
+44 020 8574 1902
+44 020 8574 1912
Charity No: 262404
About Awards & Honours
Sikh View About
Awards & Honours
are many good reasons why any award or honour for
community “seva” is a humbling and spiritual
experience. The obvious reason is that Waheguru gave us
human birth, body, mind and wealth (tann, mann
and dhan). In gratitude, we should be serving
Waheguru by serving His creation, including fellow human
beings and the environment – this temple of God called the
earth – with humility and without expectation of any award
or honour. However, regrettably, human nature is such that
despite protestations to the contrary, hao-mai
(ego-centricity) creates a desire for recognition. It is
that realisation that makes one humble when honoured in
anyway for what is supposed to be “nishkam seva”.
An award detracts from one’s spiritual credit.
reason for humility is fact based. That there are hundreds
of truly dedicated sevadars working through Sikh
charities doing seva in the field, outside Gurdwaras where
most needed. I have followed the progress of some e.g.
Khalsa Aid since 1999, and have also been aware of the
great seva being done in diverse fields by others.
I have had a special interest in Sikh heritage and better
understanding of Anglo-Sikh relations.
All these sevadars
are much more deserving than some pen pusher like me, who
happens to come to the notice of the establishment. So,
any award is really received not for self but on behalf of
these unsung Khalsa heroes. I have had the satisfaction of
working “with” many, but not “for” any organisation,
because, only the Khalsa Panth is my organisation.
always focussed on the two aspects of Sikh British
identity: how to be a good Sikh and how to be a
responsible British citizen. Both parts of that identity
are complementary. For interfacing with the Government
departments effectively, I have always promoted the idea
of a “round-table” of UK Gurdwaras and organisations,
first as the open British Sikh Consultative Forum started
in 2002 – not to be confused with a membership forum set
up later by the same name – and more recently the Sikh
Counci UK. Sikh charity work outside Gurdwaras is
essential for promoting Sikhi ideals and identity.
It is a
matter of great satisfaction personally for me, that the
concept of “Sikh Education Welfare & Advancement
(SEWA)”, was first conceived at the family farm in
Riverland, South Australia in March 1999, on the
tri-centennial anniversary of the Khalsa Panth. S. Raghbir
Singh Bains of Canada was visiting and I wrote the long
the high point of Sikh tradition” for circulation to
Australian politicians and others. The concept has worked
well: that individuals with experience and special skills
should serve existing Sikh organisations and not set up
own organisations to promote themselves or to compete with
It was with
above thoughts in mind that I accepted the Queen’s New
Year 2016 award of OBE (Officer of the Order of the
Copyright Gurmukh Singh (U.K.) OBE
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