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India to set up Guru Nanak chair in UK university

The Guru Nanak Chair funded by India is to be based in a university in the Midlands region of England, which has a considerable population of Sikh and Indian origin.

world Updated: May 22, 2019 08:18 IST
India,Guru Nanak,Guru Nanak chair
India’s high commissioner to the UK Ruchi Ghanshyam (R) and president of Sikh Council, Wales, Gurmit Randhawa honouring children for reciting ‘shabads’ at an event in Cardiff.

India is in the process of setting up a chair in a British university as part of Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary celebrations, India’s high commissioner announced at an event in Cardiff attended by local dignitaries and others.

The Guru Nanak Chair funded by India is to be based in a university in the Midlands region of England, which has a considerable population of Sikh and Indian origin. Ruchi Ghanshyam announced the plan over the weekend among other initiatives to mark the year-long celebrations.

Part of the high commission’s community outreach, the event was organised at Cardiff University in association with the Sikh Council of Wales and four gurdwaras in Wales. It was attended by the first minister of Wales Mark Drakeford and others.

Recalling Guru Nanak’s message transcending time, countries, castes, creed and gender, Ghanshyam said it is relevant today and would continue to guide humanity for generations to come.

Besides the Guru Nanak Chair, Ghanshyam noted initiatives such as the development of the Kartarpur corridor and that of the historic town of Sultanpur Lodi, special trains connecting various holy places associated with Guru Nanak and commemorative coins and stamps.

She said the universal appeal of Guru Nanak’s message was reflected in the Sri Ram Mandir in London’s Southall, recently organising a major event with the participation of several gurdwaras and people of different faith.

The Cardiff event was telecast live by the Sikh Channel to 106 countries and one of the highlights was children reciting ‘shabad’ or the hymns from the Guru Granth Sahib and focus on the various facets of the Sikh culture, a spokesperson of the high commission said on Tuesday.

Dignitaries at the event included Brooke Boothby, vice-lord lieutenant of Cardiff and South Glamorgan, Diane Rees, lord mayor of Cardiff, Jenny Randerson, chancellor of Cardiff University, Gurmit Singh Randhawa, president of Sikh Council in Wales, and professor James Hegarty of Cardiff University.

First Published: May 22, 2019 08:01 IST