Seven decades after the searing partition of 1947, the Sikh community continues to yearn to experience its glorious heritage abandoned across Pakistan. For those fortunate few able to visit the country, they remain confined to a handful of functional gurdwaras. Would the heritage of the land where Sikhism was born and the Sikhs had created an empire have been limited to just these few functional gurdwaras? What about the magnificence of the scores of historic monuments, forts, battlegrounds, places of worship, commercial and residential establishments and art associated with the community?
Driven by a deep rooted desire to delve into the vestiges, armed with passion, I ventured deep into Pakistan. During a month long journey across West Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Pakistan Administered Kashmir, an invisible force was supporting my pursuit. I had entered the country with just a desire and faith but as I connected with like-minded people, all came together to help. My search, while focused primarily on discovering the state of Sikh legacy, incorporated Hindu and Muslim aspects that had association with the Sikhs.
The scope of exploration encompassed the community’s cultural, social, philosophical and martial aspects between 15th and 21st century?
On return to Singapore, as I was revisiting the 19th century travelogues of the Europeans who had then travelled across the Sikh empire, I wondered, whether I too should document my experiences! Could this work serve as a window for future generations to comprehend some aspects of our heritage that will soon cease to exist?
‘LOST HERITAGE – The Sikh Legacy in Pakistan’, a 60 chapter narrative in over 50,000 words, interspersed with 513 photographs presents the diverse remnants of the community across the country.
I invite you to experience the scope of the book, scheduled to be released in Dec 2015.
Order the Book: Lost Heritage Website Pre-Order