| United States | 7 Jan 2017 | Asia Samachar |
SikhChic.com, a US-based Sikh online portal, has named Ravinder Singh of the Khalsa Aid as its The Chic Sikh of the Year 2016.
“This year’s choice is an extraordinary man who has devoted his life to the service of those who are in dire need, whether it is as a result of natural calamity, oppression, war or famine. That is, around the world, regardless of nationality, religion, colour, language…,” the online portal said.
The annual selection, now into its ninth year, is the result of a two-month long poll from a list of 27 nominations from its readers worldwide and a final whetting by the five-judge panel.
The criteria for the honour of being selected ‘The Chic Sikh of The Year’ stipulate that a candidate’s actions should constitute public service above and beyond the call of duty; selfless, consistent, ongoing and meticulous service; have a ground-breaking and far-reaching impact; commensurate with the highest Sikh ideals of working towards the welfare of all people; of benefit to people of all faiths and races; have made a mark on society in the year 2016; of a nation-building nature; and deserving wide recognition, encouragement and support.
“The selection process this year, as always, has not been easy. The judges have now selected a man who has reminded us of our duty, as citizens no matter where we live, to devote our lives in serving those who are in need … thus exemplifying the highest of Sikh ideals and values,” says SikhChic.
SEE ALSO: Ravi, does publicity get to your head?
SikhChic describes itself as a daily magazine on the art and culture of the Sikh diaspora and an informative contemporary website to learn about the global Sikh community.
Ravi, the founder/CEO of the London-based humanitarian relief agency Khalsa Aid, also won the won an award at the Sikh Award 2016 in London in September 2016.
Asia Samachar interviewed Ravi when he made a stopover in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on a trip to Australia in August 2016.
When asked if publicity gets to his head, Ravi said: “There is a fine line, where people will get corrupted. But if you know, and the people who know me, they will tell you that I’m driven more to pass the message to the next generation than for myself.
“You always have to remember you’re uplifting the community and not yourself. My message, always – a reminder to myself and the community around – is that we are here for a bigger purpose, not for the individual Ravi Singh. We are here for Khalsa Aid, for the Sikh community.”
In its citation on Ravinder, SikhChic noted that his footprints, and those of his team under the banner of ’Khalsa Aid‘, are to be found in trouble spots everywhere, including Haiti, Pakistan, United Kingdom, Indonesia, Turkey, United States, Punjab, Iraq, Kosovo, India, Bangladesh, Somalia.
“It has now become his life-work, and his name synonymous with Seva – the Sikh concept of selfless service to others, way beyond the call of duty and above any self interest or agenda.
“He inspires people worldwide who have responded not only through generous support but have also tried to emulate the letter and spirit of his message and actions,” says the SikhChic citation.
The list of past winners includes Wisconsin Gurdwara hero Lt. Brian Murphy, British Marathoner Fauja Singh, Human Rights Activist Gurbaksh Singh, Canada’s Defence Minister Harjit Singh Sajjan, Harvinder Singh Phoolka (Human Rights Advocate), Jarnail Singh (‘The Lion of Delhi’), Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Sikh American Legal Defense & Education Fund (SALDEF), Saran Singh (Editor, The Sikh Review), Waris Singh Ahluwalia, The Sikh Coalition, the Survivors of 1984, and United Sikhs.
Among the entries for 2016 were Canada (Nation), Bardish Kaur Chagger (Canada Govt. House of Commons Leader), Rupi Kaur (Poet, artist), Ajaypal Singh Banga (CEO, MasterCard), Harnarayan Singh (Broadcaster), Jagraj Singh (Basics of Sikhi), Mota Singh, Sir (Judhe, UK), Navdeep Singh Bains (Minister, Canadian Govt), Nikki Kaur Randhawa Haley and Justin Trudeau (Prime Minister of Canada).
[ASIA SAMACHAR is an online newspaper for Sikhs in Southeast Asia and surrounding countries. We have a Facebook page, do give it a LIKE! Visit our website: www.asiasamachar.com]
Manika Kaur, Ravinder Singh win UK’s Sikh Award 2016 (Asia Samachar, 28 Nov 2016)
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Khalsa Aid building shelters, school in Nepal (Asia Samachar, 17 Aug 2016)
Ravi, does publicity get to your head? (Asia Samachar, 17 Aug 2016)
Khalsa Aid ‘drowned with love’ in Australia, gets warm reception in Malaysia (Asia Samachar, 16 Aug 2016)
Canadians share Khalsa Panth ideals: Justin Trudeau (Asia Samachar, 11 April 2016)
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Harjit Sajjan: Canada’s ‘bad-ass’ defence minister (Asia Samachar, 11 Jan 2016)