A native of Gurdaspur who migrated to USA in early 1970s, Dharam Singh Goraya has penned down four books, out of which, two are on Jagga Dakku and Dullah Bhatti, two of the most important characters of the Punjabi folklore.
“I think writers who wrote on them (Jagga Dakku and Dullah Bhatti) didn’t do justice, so I tracked them to their native places to explore the truth,” Dharam Singh told HT, adding that he visited village Ransinghwala near Kasur in Pakistan and village Pindi Bhatian of Hafizabad district, the native villages of Jagga Dakku and Dullah Bhatti respectively.
Goraya, who completed his masters in Economics from Punjabi University, said: “I got the inspiration to write about these characters because I belonged to the border area of Punjab.”
“It was an underdeveloped area and survival there was tough. Sometimes to save our self respects, we turned violent, but that doesn’t mean we were criminals. Similarly, Jagga and Dullah were forced to take to arms due to circumstances,” adds Goraya, who sneaked into US from Canada under very hostile conditions about 34 years ago.
In 1960s, due to long association with CPI (M), it was difficult for Goraya to live in Punjab so he left for Germany and subsequently sneaked into Toronto to finally come to USA.
“To write about people who walked against the current during different times in the history is my passion, which I am trying to pursue now,” said Goraya, who is settled in Waldorf area of Maryland.
Goraya is in touch with the family of Jagga’s daughter Resham Kaur (96), who lives in Vannwala village, a part of Lambi constituency in Punjab. He is also instrumental in organising an annual festival in the native village of Dulha Bhatti.
Book on Che Guevara
Opening of a Cuban Embassy in Washington (USA) after a gap of 54 years is an historic event.
Goraya will now pen the historical development by penning a book on Che Guevara, who played vital role in Cuban revolution.
“There is so much written about Che Guevara but I want to put the things in right perspective. I want to track his journey,” Goraya told HT, who plans to track life of Guevara from Argentina to Cuba, Peru, Bolivia and Guetamala.
Know Dulla Bhatti
Dulla Bhatti was a 16th century 'Punjabi Robin Hood' who led a rebellion against Mughal emperor Akbar. He robbed the Mughal officials who collected taxes and tributes and redistributed the money to the poor. He is also considered to be the savior of women.
Know Jagga Daku
Jagat Singh, best known as Jagga Jatt or Jagga Daku was a 20th century heroic rebel of Punjab. He is also known for 'robbing from the rich and giving to the poor'.