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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Sep 2014

Britain honours Sikhs' contribution to armed forces

PTI   London, November 23, 2013
First Published: 20:04 IST(23/11/2013) | Last Updated: 20:12 IST(23/11/2013)

Britain has honoured the contribution of thousands of Sikhs who laid down their lives fighting for the British Indian Army during both World Wars at an event here.

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The event at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, in Berkshire, southwest of London, on Friday was held to commemorate the contributions made by the community to the British armed forces.

"It is about commemorating the Sikh contribution to the armed forces, both today and in the past," Lt Colonel John Kendall, who organised the event at the Indian War Memorial room at Sandhurst, said.
"It is a story of loyalty, courage and selfless commitment," he said.

During the days of the British Empire, Sikh soldiers were highly regarded by British officers for their martial prowess. "Sikhs have played an important role in the British army for 150 years. In both World Wars, Sikh regiments fought for the British all over the world, even on the western front in the World War-I and they distinguished themselves very well," Anthony Morton, curator of the Sandhurst collection, told BBC.

Author Jay Singh Sohal believes contribution of Sikhs in the British Army is largely unrecognised, which is why events like this are important.

"British Sikhs, third generation, fourth generation can take inspiration from the fact that their forebears fought for Great Britain," he said.

There are 265 Sikhs currently serving in the British armed services and army leaders hope by celebrating the military contribution of their ancestors, more will be encouraged to join. Agencies


London: Britain has honoured the contribution of thousands of Sikhs who laid down their lives fighting for the British Indian Army during both World Wars at an event here.

The event at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, in Berkshire, southwest of London, on Friday was held to commemorate the contributions made by the community to the British armed forces.

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