Sikh Man Makes History Becomes Head of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Police. Article Published on Malaysia Samachar
Amar Singh, a third-generation cop, made history for the Sikh community in Malaysia today when he was appointed as the chief police officer (CPO) of Kuala Lumpur, with the rank of commissioner. This is the highest rank attained by a Sikh police officer in Malaysia.
Santokh Singh was the last Sikh to be appointed as a state police chief when he was made Selangor CPO with the rank of SAC 1.
In another appointment, Supt Baljeet Singh also received a promotion and a bump up in rank. He has been appointed as the Pulapol Langkawi commandant carrying the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP). Pulapol stands for Pusat Latihan Police (police training centre).
He is currently at the narcotic investigation centre at Maktab PDRM in Kuala Lumpur.
Amar, who had also had a stint at Pulapol Kuala Lumpur – which houses the Gurdwara Sahib Pulapol – is a third-generation cop. His maternal grandfather, Bachan Singh, was a constable in the police force. His dad, Ishar Singh, had joined later.
Amar’s dad left Punjab for Malaya via Calcutta in 1938 at the age of 18. He arrived in Penang and did odd jobs while waiting for an opportunity to join the police force. In 1939, he was accepted into the force and posted to Sitiawan, Perak, after undergoing training, according to one news report (Groomed for the Police Force in The Star, 2012). A copy can be read here.
The report adds:
Ishar was a pioneer member of the police jungle squad which was first established during the Emergency. Squad members would stay in the jungle for up to two months at a time and shift camp in pursuit of terrorists. Ishar retired as a corporal in the Federated Malay States Police (FMSP) in 1971. He worked as a security guard in the Kinta Omnibus workshop and passed away in 1999 at the age of 80, the report adds.
Amar is a third-generation cop as his maternal grandfather, Bachan Singh, was a constable in the police force too. Bachan journeyed to Malaya as a teenager in the early 1900s. He served in among other places, Kuala Kubu Baru, Kuala Lipis and Raub, where Amar’s mother was born. Bachan retired in Klang in the 1940s.
Amar graduated with B.Sc from Universiti Malaya (UM). He also has an LLB from the University of Buckingham, Britain, as well as a Certificate in Legal Practice. He also graduated with a Master’s in Criminal Justice from UM, and a Diploma in Syariah Law and Practice from the International Islamic University Malaysia.
Amar’s first posting was to his hometown in Ipoh in the crime unit and he has had stints in Johor Baru and Klang. His last posting before his present position as Deputy KL CPO was as the 40th and only Sikh commandant of Pulapol from 2007 to 2010. As head, Amar made it compulsory that all trainee officers go to their respective places of worship everyday.
Amar also insisted that all Sikh trainees tied a turban when performing their religious obligations at the Pulapol Gurdwara as “this makes you proud of who and what you are.”