Lauding the valiant role played by Sikh soldiers during World War 1 and 2, UK home secretary Theresa May on Sunday described them as unsung heroes who won freedom for the country.
Describing Sikh soldiers as fearless warriors, May said they made an “incalculable positive contribution to world history, boldly fighting injustice, tyranny and oppression”.
“The audience should remember the unsung heroes who gave us the freedom we hold so dear today,” she said at a ceremony organised by the British Sikh Association to honour leading Dubai-based non-resident Indian Surender Singh Kandhari.
She presented the Sikh Jewel Award to Kandhari, who is also the chairman of Guru Nanak Darbar, Dubai, for his exceptional service, dedication and commitment to the Sikh community.
May, who was the chief guest at the event, also spoke on the acts of heroism of Sikh soldiers during both the world wars.
Many Sikh soldiers have been presented with the Victoria Cross Medal, the highest award for gallantry in the British military.
India’s deputy high commissioner to the United Kingdom, Dr Virander Paul, paid tributes to the British Sikh community for emerging as one of the most prominent ethnic minorities in the UK.
The Sikh Jewel Award is presented to those who bring honour to the Sikh community by living up to the ideals of the Sikh gurus.