Yearender: Important personalities from the region who bid adieu to this world in 2014

  • Neetika Walter, Hindustan Times
  • Updated: Dec 27, 2014 21:31 IST

The region lost eminent personalities from various fields this year. From legendary writer Khushwant Singh to Sufi singer Barkat Sidhu, here's a list of important people from the region who bid adieu to this world in 2014.

Khushwant Singh (99)

Writer, journalist, one of India's best known satirists and former editor Khushwant Singh, died on March 20. Singh, known for his witty, fearless writings was 99.

The man who spared none with his column--With Malice towards One and All — was Hindustan Times editor from 1980-1983. The writer, who authored some internationally renowned books like "Train to Pakistan", "I Shall Not Hear the Nightingale", "A History of the Sikhs", "The Company of Women" and "Delhi", ruled the literary pages with his satirical take on contemporary issues. He was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by the government under late Indira Gandhi. He was a Member of Parliament from 1980 to 1986.

He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1974, but returned it in protest for Operation Bluestar in 1984.

He began his dealings with media as information officer of the government of India in Toronto and Canada and was Press attaché and public officer for the high commission in the United Kingdom and the embassy in Ireland in 1948-50. Khushwant Singh started his writing career with Yojana, the planning commission's journal which he founded and edited.

In 2002, he wrote his autobiography "Truth, Love and a Little Malice". Kushwant Singh was awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 2007.

Veteran Akali leader Jagdev Singh Talwandi(86)

Veteran Akali leader and former president of the Shiromani Akali Dal and Shiromani Gurdwara Prabhandak Committee,Jagdev Singh Talwandi died on September 19. 86-year-old Talwandi was also a minister of state in the first non-Congress government in Punjab in 1967. He was elected to Lok Sabha from Ludhiana in 1977.

Senior Akali leader Gurcharan Ghalib (82)

Former MP and senior Akali leader Gurcharan Singh Ghalib died on October 18. Ghalib, 82, remained Congress MP from Ludhiana till 2009 but joined Shiromani Akali Dal when Manish Tewari was given ticket for Lok Sabha elections by the Congress. He was holding the position of vice-president of Shiromani Akali Dal at the time if his death.

Hockey Olympian G Nandy Singh (88)

Hockey Olympian G Nandy Singh passed away in New Delhi on December 7. He was 88. Nandy was a member of the Indian hockey team that won gold medal in 1948 (London) and 1952 (Helsinki) Olympics. He retired as commander from the Indian Navy and was felicitated with Param Vashisht Sewa Medal (PVSM).

Barkat Sidhu (68)

Noted Punjabi Sufi singer Barkat Sidhu passed away on August 17. The 68-year-old singer was battling cancer. Sidhu was the cousin of another noted Punjabi Sufi singer Puran Shahkoti. Some of his famous compositions are 'Alit Allah' and 'Uth Gaye Gwandon Yaar Rabba Hun Ki Kariye'. He was an exponent of 'Patiala Gharana.'

Jai Ram Joshi (73)

Former president of Chandigarh Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and renowned social activist lawyer Jai Ram Joshi, 73, died on November 21 after brief illness. Jai Ram Joshi was working as the swayamsewak of Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) for the past many years.

Sultan Singh (92)

Former governor and veteran politician Sultan Singh passed away at a Delhi hospital on December 16. 92-year-old Singh, who had remained a member of Rajya Sabha three times, was fifth governor of Tripura from 1989 to 1990.

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