Eminent film and theatre personalities paid rich tributes to city-based Hukam Singh Bhatty (93), who served Indian National Army (INA) during the nation's struggle for freedom, as he died following cardiac arrest in Mumbai on Tuesday morning. He had left for Mumbai on Saturday.
HS Bhatty was an electronic entrepreneur and a promoter of Punjabi culture. Prominent speakers included film actors Dolly Tewari, Harjinder Kaur, Kamal Tewari, Prof Rajpal Singh,Prof Nirmal Dutt, Dr SS Chiller, Sudesh Sharma, Parvesh Sethi, Rajiv Mehta and others. Winner of filmfare and other awards Dolly Ahluwalia Tewari had instituted an award worth Rs 25,000 for best theatre artists in the name of HS Bhatty.
They recalled Bhatty's contribution during freedom struggle and his achievements as he was one of the top players in the electronic industry, who had set up a TV factory at Mohali. The speakers said that Bhatty was a prolific writer and art promoter who is hailed as an ambassador of Punjabi culture in the world.
Bhatty along with cine actor Balraj Sahini had set up Punjabi Kala Kendra in Mumbai before Bhatty shifted to Chandigarh to promote Punjabi culture. He organised an international conference on Punjabi as secretary general of Punjab Arts Council and also raised funds for Randhawa auditorium worth `2 crore from personal resources.
Born on April 13, 1923 at Taihang in Hongkong, where his father Basant Singh was serving, it was 1935 when young Hukam Singh visited his hometown. His early association with Subhash Chander Bose inspired him to join the freedom struggle and he served the Indian National Army before he was sent to Layalpur jail for over three years.