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Punjabi Diaspora celebrates the
common-wealth of Punjabiyat
 

By Hardeep Singh
 


In 1947 Punjab got partitioned in two halves. Millions got separated overnight and millions lost their lives. This is one of the most tragic incident of 20th century.
On September 7th, 2017, defying all the politics and religious lines, Punjabis from east and west Punjab came together to celebrate what is common among them – The People, Poetry, Literature, Songs and Music. There are over 120 million Punjabis across the world, which are spread across 160 countries.
1947 might have been successful in partitioning the Punjab's land,

BUT,
- It failed to take away the Ruhaniyat (spirituality) ingrained in all the religions adopted by Punjabis. One of the rare and unique point of observation is that Punjabis have adopted all the faiths which came or originated in this land of five rivers. Starting with Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Islam, Sikhism, Christianity and other faiths have been adopted by Punjabis. Besides all the religious diversity, there is a lot common among them to be celebrated and cherished.
- It failed to dilute the love for Sufism and Sufis. Baba Fareed, Bulleh-Shah and many other Sufis are still sung across the Radcliff line. Hardeep Singh recited a Kafi written by Bulleh-Shah on ‘Attitude of Gratitude’.
- It failed to reduce the love for the Parathas, Lassi, and Punjabi cuisine, which is very much relished on both sides. Devinder Singh Johar recited a poem, taking a satirical dig on the appetite of a Punjabis, filling the room with laughter. Chawal and Punjabi Chole were served at the event.
- It failed to reduce the sweetness of water in five rivers flowing through the land. Sutlej, Chenab, Ravi and Jhelum flows thru both Punjabs and are life-line of Punjab and other states. Shivinder Singh recited a poem, sharing an incidence that how Sister Fatima directed her sons to ensure the safe passage across the Ravi, for Shivinder’s ancestors.
- It failed to reduce the passion for Salwaar-Kameez, Pagree and Punjabi Pehnawa. Salwaar-kameez is still an ethnic wear of Punjabi women and Pagree is still worn by men on both sides as mark of courage, respect and sovereignty.
- It failed to perish the Punjabi language, which is still spoken with similar vocabulary across the Wagagh border. Dr. Ganafur, an 85-year old Professor, who was born in Phillur, East Punjab, spoke in chaste Punjabi and was in tears while sharing his visit to Phillur few years back. Sidhu Dumdhami gave a status of Punjabi language and scripts: Gurmukhi and Shahmukhi, written across the borders.
- It failed to stop the readers from either side, from reciting poems and reading literature. Sandhya Bhagat, recited a poem ‘Mein tainu phir millangee’ written by Amrita Pritam.
- It failed to deter singers from either side to sing Heer, Mahiya, Jugnee and many other Punjabi folk songs. Raj Nijjar, a famous singer from Washington DC, along with Darshan Singh Aulakh sang couplets from Heer, Mahiya, Perto and other folk songs. Gagan Singh played the tabla.



Anil Bhagat, sang a famous Punjabi song ‘ki main koi jhoot boleya’.
Jasleen Kaur, a trained singer, sung ‘Akheyaan ch tu vasda’ originally sung by famous Punjabi Folk singer Surinder Kaur.
Keerat Kaur, a trained singer, who had sung in a Punjabi movie, sang ‘Mahiya tere pyar vich’ originally sung by Fariha Parvez, a famous Pakistani singer.
Hafeez sang a Punjabi song - Yara Silli Silli and a ghazal - Mere Shauk da nahin aitbaar tainu, originally sung by Ghulam Ali.
- It failed to divide sacrificial-love stories (Sohni-Mahiwaal, Heer-Ranjha). Bollywood and Lollywood still continue to make movies on these love-stories.
- It failed to divide Bhangra, Giddha, Jaago, Jhumar, Luddi, Dhamal, and many other dance forms, which are one of the key performances in desi cultural shows.
- It failed to reduce Punjabi's love for fun and hilarious expressions of life. Tahir Sayal, Kamlesh Chugh, and Kiran Shaiknag enacted a play: Interview with Mr. Jarnail Singh and Mrs. Jarnail Singh. Play invoked many laughter’s especially during the conversation between Mr. and Mrs. Jarnail Singh. Kiran conducted the interview with a wit.

Surinder Singh Lalli and Tahir Sayal, emceed the event and kept it alive with their satires and stories. Shahid Malik gave vote of thanks. D.V Singh of Indian consulate appreciated the effort as an ‘excellent initiative of uniting people’.
The event was sponsored by Shivamoga Entertainment, Punjab Rang Art, Sikh-American Society of GA and Sanjha Chulla.
 



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