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UK award for inspiring 73-year-old ‘Skipping Sikh’

Missing taking his daily exercise, food and prayer with others from the Sikh community during lockdown, officials said Singh decided to share videos online of his skipping fitness routines and inspire others to keep active with him, particularly those isolating at home.

indians-abroad Updated: Jun 26, 2020 22:28 IST
Prasun Sonwalkar
Prasun Sonwalkar
Hindustan Times, London
Rajinder Singh with his wife Pritpal Kaur and daughter Min Kaur.
Rajinder Singh with his wife Pritpal Kaur and daughter Min Kaur.

Rajinder Singh, popularly known as the ‘Skipping Sikh’ for his exercise videos that attract hundreds of thousands of viewers and raise funds for the National Health Service (NHS), was on Friday awarded the ‘Point of Light’ award at Downing Street.

Singh, 73, from Harlington, was given the award that recognises outstanding individual volunteers who make a change in their community. He used the isolation imposed by coronavirus lockdown to create exercise videos that are watched across the globe.

Missing taking his daily exercise, food and prayer with others from the Sikh community during lockdown, officials said Singh decided to share videos online of his skipping fitness routines and inspire others to keep active with him, particularly those isolating at home.

In a personal letter to Singh, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “I wanted to write personally to thank you for all that you are doing to support our extraordinary NHS, and encouraging the nation to pick up their skipping ropes and keep their spirits high by taking on your lockdown skip challenge”.

“Your ‘Skipping Sikh’ fitness videos have given a lift to the thousands of people worldwide who have watched online and taken part with you in your daily exercise, and provided an ingenious way of bringing together and energising the Sikh community at a time when temples have been closed”.

“So allow me to join in sharing your message that health is wealth, and congratulate you on becoming the UK’s 1410th Point of Light!”

Singh said after receiving the award: “Waheguru ji ka khalsa, waheguru ji ki fateh. I am truly humbled for being awarded the Points of Light award. I love to serve others – it’s part of who I am as a Sikh and I love to do sewa (give back)”.

“I never thought something like skipping would inspire the world and spread smiles. I’m really grateful for the support and being given this recognition. Thank you to our PM Boris Johnson, God bless you and everyone, I thank everyone for the support and love, and I encourage all to join in the skipping challenge and tag me in @SikhSkipping. Health is wealth so to everyone my message is stay active and stay happy.”

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