Culture creates society, it is what we are working to save: Navjot Sidhu

punjab Updated: Feb 03, 2018 17:00 IST
Arshdeep Arshi
Arshdeep Arshi
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Punjab,Punajb culture,Navjot Sidhu

(From right) Tourism and culture minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, theatre artist Jatinder Kaur, Punjab Kala Parishad chairman and poet Surjit Patar, and writer Waryam Sandhu at the opening of the seven-day MS Randhawa Art and Literature Festival in Chandigarh on Friday. (Karun Sharma/HT)

Punjab minister for local government, tourism, cultural affairs and museums Navjot Singh Sidhu inaugurated the seven-day MS Randhawa Art and Literature Festival 2018 on Friday. Punjab Kala Parishad is organising the event, where the minister felicitated Punjabi writer Waryam Sandhu, theatre artist, Jatinder Kaur, and writer Joginder Singh Kairon. Waryam Sandhu and Jatinder Kaur were awarded with the ‘Punjab Gaurav Sanman’ while Joginder Singh Kairon was awarded with the ‘Jeewankal Prapti Puraskar (Lifetime Achievement Award).’

“Jehde kehnde si ke Sidhu nu khudde laya department ditta, ohna nu das dwa ke sabhyachar sab ton important cheez hundi’, (I wish to tell those who say that Sidhu has been sidelined after being given the culture portfolio that culture is the most important thing). I promise that I will stand by the likes of Punjab Kala Parishad chairman Surjit Patar and writer Gulzar Sandhu in saving the deteriorating culture of Punjab,” Sidhu said.

Expressing his sadness at the deteriorating culture, literature and art of Punjab, Waryam Sandhu, “Babe Nanak de bol hashiye te laaye ja rahe ne, Mardane di rabab tidkdi ja rahi ae’ (The sayings of Baba Nanak are being forgotten, rabab of Mardana is being broken).” He was referring to farmer suicides and drug menace in Punjab.

Jatinder Kaur shared her experience , “My in-laws never accepted me, but my husband (Harbhajan Jabhal) stood by me,” she said. Eminent writer Gulzar Singh Sandhu shared many of his memories of MS Randhawa’s quick wit. “He had some kind of machine inside him, when questioned the machine would automatically speak up,” he recalled.

Lifetime achievement awards announced

Surjit Patar announced Lifetime Achievement Awards to veteran painters Krishan Khanna and Satish Gujral, to novelist Jaswant Singh Kanwal, and to poet Harbhajan Singh Hundal. “We will go to their residence to present them with the awards in the next few days,” he said.

Punjab Kala Parishad vice-chairperson Neelam Mansingh Chowdhry and Punjab Sangeet Natak Akademi president Kewal Dhaliwal were also present.

First Published: Feb 03, 2018 11:50 IST