It is Time to Pick The Chic Sikh of the Year 2012: EDITOR
Who is Your Choice?
It’s that time of the year again when we take stock of the year gone by and select THE CHIC SIKH OF THE YEAR.
We therefore ask you to please name your choice by posting it in the COMMENT section below.
This year has been a landmark year in which so many women, men and children -- individually and collectively -- have made a mark on the local, as well as the world scene, by living up to the highest ideals of Sikhi in helping make the world a better place for all of humanity.
We seek your help in choosing one who you think has best exemplified those ideals within her, his, or its field of endeavour, during the course of this year.
- Any woman, man, child, group, institution or corporation may be named.
- The nominee may be a Sikh or a non-Sikh.
- She, he or it may be based in any part of the world, or the activity being highlighted could be tied to any geographical area.
- The nominee could be named for one or more achievements, or a life-time of contribution, as long as the primary reason for naming her, him or the entity THE CHIC SIKH OF THE YEAR 2012 is significantly tied to the year 2012.
Please provide, along with the name of your nominee, your reasons why you are nominating or voting for the person or entity you've named.
Also, please do not fail to provide in the designated space your full name, as well as the name of your city and country -- it helps readers to fully appreciate the context of your support.
You may nominate more than one choice, but we request that you limit yourself to one nomination in each posting. That is, multiple nominations should be in separate postings in order to facilitate the selection process.
Please note, however, that no one on the staff or any of the boards that shape and guide sikhchic.com is eligible to be selected the winner.
The deadline for all nominations is strictly 9.00 pm (Toronto, Canada, time), Wednesday, December 26, 2012.
All nominations will be posted on sikhchic.com.
The name of the Winner (who will be selected by a panel of judges) will be announced on January 1, 2013 on sikhchic.com and other media.
The list of past winners includes - Fauja Singh, Harvinder Singh Phoolka (Human Rights Advocate), Jarnail Singh ('The Lion of Delhi'), Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, SALDEF, Saran Singh (Editor, The Sikh Review),The Sikh Coalition, and United Sikhs.
We look forward to your participation in this year‘s selection.
P.S. - A SUGGESTION: You may wish to skim over the postings from this year in sikhchic.com sections such as PEOPLE and CURRENT EVENTS, for example, to remind yourself of the rich goings-on during 2012.
November 5, 2011
Conversation about this article
1: Karambir Singh (London, England), November 04, 2012, 11:37 PM.
I nominate the "WISCONSIN SIX" who lost their lives last summer in the Oak Creek tragedy. They symbolize the collective sacrifices of those who have struggled in the diaspora to carve a place of equality and dignity in every 'new' homeland.
2: Jodh Singh (New Delhi, India), November 04, 2012, 11:48 PM.
BALPREET KAUR, the young Sardarni who took on headlong the boor on the internet and single-handedly, through her own grace and compassion, exemplified the beauty and ideals of Sikhi itself.
3: Ranbir Kaur (San Jose, California, USA), November 04, 2012, 11:54 PM.
For me, Lt BRIAN MURPHY of the Oak Creek Police captured the spirit of Sikhi: selflessness and putting oneself on the line to protect others, even those who are not 'your own'.
4: Preet Kaur (Navi Mumbai, India), November 05, 2012, 12:06 AM.
Sardar BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA is my pick. He reminds us of the task ahead of us as a community, of the fact that it will involve much sacrifice, and that ultimately we will overcome!
5: Perpinder Singh (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), November 05, 2012, 12:59 AM.
I nominate Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. In a stirring speech given in 1995, Sardar Jaswant Singh Khalra shared the following fable with the congregation: " ... when the Sun was setting for the first time, as it was completing its journey, light was decreasing and the signs of Darkness were appearing. It is said, lamentation was rife amongst the people that the Sun will set, Darkness will spread, no one will be able to see anything, and what will happen to us? Everybody was worried, but the Sun set. In order to show its strength, Darkness set its foot on the earth, but it is said, far away, in some hut, one little Lamp lifted his head. It proclaimed, 'I challenge the Darkness. If nothing else, then at least around myself, I will not let it settle. Around myself I will establish Light.' And it is said, watching that one Lamp, in other huts other Lamps arose. And the world was amazed that these Lamps stopped Darkness from expanding, so that people could see." Bhai Balwant Singh has challenged that Darkness - that corrupt and oppressive Indian regime - with a strength and dignity that makes every Sikh stand taller. Does his spirit not mirror that of warriors like Bhai Bota Singh and Bhai Garja Singh? For a regime bent on tearing down the honor and dignity of an entire people, how it must pain them to see a lion like him standing fearless and defiant. What a horror to them - and a joy to us - that the Sikh spirit in Punjab they thought broken and dead, was not. That rivers of alcohol and drugs had not turned the Sikh heart to gray ash; that one brave man could remind Sikhs in Punjab of their heritage, and fan quiet embers to roaring life.
6: Manpreet Singh (Hyderabad, India), November 05, 2012, 2:56 AM.
I would select Lt. BRIAN MURPHY ... his selfless service, commitment towards his duty and upholding the values of humanity are aspects which are commendable.
7: Kamal Singh (Mumbai, India), November 05, 2012, 3:34 AM.
BALPREET KAUR is my choice for the Chic Sikh of the Year. And, J.K. ROWLING, for incorporating Sikh characters in her new novel so brilliantly.
8: Rajenpal Singh (San Jose, California, USA), November 05, 2012, 3:46 AM.
I second the nomination of Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. His struggle is one that is trying to rekindle our identity as Sikhs.
9: Baldev Singh (Bradford, United Kingdom), November 05, 2012, 4:14 AM.
Extremely tricky one this year! Lord INDARJIT SINGH was great a few days ago! But my short-list has to include Lt. BRIAN MURPHY for his awesome selfless bravery; J.K. ROWLING for her awesome story-telling and BALPREET KAUR for showing the whole world her awesome coolness and forgiveness to mocking hate, when ordinary mortals would have crumbled! Lt. MURPHY is my choice because of his extraordinary bravery in saving Sikhs by almost sacrificing his own life!
10: Surinderpal Singh (New Jersey, USA), November 05, 2012, 7:59 AM.
Sardarni BALPREET KAUR. Or Wisconsin's hero, Lt BRIAN MURPHY.
11: Priya Kaur (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada), November 05, 2012, 9:27 AM.
Lt Col HARJIT SINGH SAJJAN who now commands a Canadian Army Regiment in British Columbia - Duke of Connaught's Own. He has served valiantly in Afghanistan (and earlier, in Bosnia, etc), and has proved to be an outstanding role model for our youth.
12: Inderpreet Singh (New Delhi, India), November 05, 2012, 9:39 AM.
ARPANA CAUR remains our unsung hero, despite a lifetime of extraordinary things she has done in a large number of fields. Her Sikh art is world renowned, but lesser known is her work in collecting and archiving our heritage, as well as in educating our youth in art and history. Most recently, she has spearheaded an exhibition of photos relating to the 1984 pogroms in order to give traction to a widespread movement to bring about justice for the victims of 1984, even though 28 years have slid by. That exhibit is currently doing the rounds here in Delhi.
13: Kulwant Singh (U.S.A.), November 05, 2012, 9:48 AM.
BHAI BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. He has invigorated us all with new fervor, in our pursuit of justice for the atrocities committed against our community, at the hands of the Indian government. His unflinching courage in the face of death, made the Indian central government throw up their hands in defeat. I have never seen anything like it.
14: Prabh Singh (Chandigarh, Punjab), November 05, 2012, 2:51 PM.
I would like to nominate, collectively, the WIDOWS OF 1984. They have lost so much, given up so much, borne the full brunt of the atrocities of 1984, and yet, stood tall. I see them, despite the fact that we -- their own community -- have failed them, the Government of India has failed them, the people of India have failed then ... that they are a walking symbol of our resilience and inner strength. I can't think of a greater tragedy than what they have lived through ... I find everything else around us pales in comparison. They remain in the spotlight even today, 28 years later. This year, as the 1984 protest movement seems to have finally taken germ here in India, they are once again front and centre, having to relive each blow, each injury, each tragedy, every day. We need to honour them.
15: Sangat Singh (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), November 05, 2012, 6:44 PM.
Lt. BRIAN MURPHY for his selfless service and remaining steadfast to his duty.
16: Jagpal Singh Tiwana (Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada), November 06, 2012, 2:57 AM.
Lt. BRIAN MURPHY is my choice. I am deeply touched by his apology to the Sikh community that he could not save the lives of the six Sikhs. Let us respond in the same spirit as he has shown towards the Sikh community.
17: Harvind Kaur Singh (USA), November 06, 2012, 4:22 PM.
I nominate MALALA YOUSAFZAI, the 14 year old Pakistani girl who was shot for standing up for girls' education. She embodies the Sikh spirit of helping the oppressed even though she herself was oppressed. The fact that the Taliban was so angered and carried out a brutal attack against her shows how one person can create change and stand up against tyranny. Her courage and her belief in doing what is right makes her an excellent candidate. (I know many folks from the India side of the border might have deep and even hidden resentments against Pakistan, but remember, this is about Malala and her stand against tyranny.)
18: Ravisan Singh Perfitt (London, England), November 10, 2012, 12:15 AM.
On 17th October, 2012, ATAM SINGH SANDHU, was made Knight of the Order of Merit of Niger - an award conferred on him by His Excellency Mohamadou Issoufou, President of the Republic of Niger. In accepting the award from the country's Foreign Minister, he became the first Briton to have received the honour in the country's 52-year history since independence. The knighthood was conferred in recognition of his company's efforts in attracting foreign direct investment into one of the world's poorest countries. He is the Chief Executive of Developing Markets Associates Limited, a globally-recognised industry leader in the field of sustainable development for emerging market economies. The company has been successful in encouraging over US $5 billion of new investment into sub-Saharan Africa in the past five years and has helped in the reconstruction and development of many post-conflict and failed states. The company works closely with the British Government's Foreign and Commonwealth Office and has a number of offices around the world. In addition to this, he has set up a charity, WAITING FOR A CAB.
19: Gurpreet Singh (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), November 11, 2012, 10:28 AM.
Sardar BALWANT SINGH RAJAOANA and BALPREET KAUR. There no more explanation required as to why.
20: Dupinder Kaur (Jersey City, New Jersey, USA), November 12, 2012, 6:43 AM.
BALPREET KAUR. In this day and age when young women feel so much pressure on physical appearance, Balpreet Kaur wants to be known for her impact and legacy and by not focusing on the physical. There are no words that can explain her bravery to step out with confidence over who she is as a person. I hope women of all ages see her and emulate her as a role model.
21: N.K. (USA), November 12, 2012, 12:46 PM.
Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA, the man who woke up a sleeping quom.
22: Bhopinder Pal Singh (Gurgaon, India), November 12, 2012, 9:25 PM.
SUNITA WILLIAMS is a serious contender. A woman with tremendous courage and unimaginable confidence, who has done the Indians proud. What she has achieved is beyond comprehension. She grabbed the opportunity she got and has become a role model for many. At her present age, how could she do it?
23: Harinder Singh 1469 (New Delhi, India), November 13, 2012, 8:33 PM.
HARINDER SINGH of the Sikh Research Institute. For raising awareness worldwide about Sikhi, through the numerous courses he teaches. Also, S. INDERJEET SINGH JAIJEE for the excellent Convention Centre he has helped build in Sangrur, Punjab.
24: N Singh (Canada), November 13, 2012, 10:40 PM.
I would like to nominate Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. It is men like him who are the backbone of the Sikhs. A man from a relatively humble, working-class background who, without thought of personal well-being and safety, was and is prepared to give his life for Sikhi. It is his bravery and humility that resonates with Sikhs across the globe. His love and sacrifice is for all of us and not reserved for a select few. May Waheguru bless us with many more Balwant Singhs.
25: Mahanjot Sodhi (Mississauga, Ontario, Canada), November 15, 2012, 10:08 AM.
My vote goes to Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. It is because of him that the entire Sikh nation across the globe (including majority of the Sikhs even in India!) got united on a single platform.
26: Sarjit Kaur (Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.), November 15, 2012, 10:56 AM.
The late S. SATWANT SINGH of the Oak Creek Gurdwara, Wisconsin, USA.
27: Kamalpreet Singh (Chandigarh, Punjab), November 17, 2012, 8:33 PM.
KHUSHWANT SINGH from Chandigarh should be considered. His work on chronicling success stories of Sikhs abroad has established a new genre in community writing. Marathon runner Fauja Singh's story became available to the world only through his book "Turbaned Tornado".
28: Amaninder Singh Gill (Patiala, Punjab), November 18, 2012, 1:51 PM.
Would like to to see Lt. BRIAN MURPHY honoured for acting in the true spirit of Sikhi - he put his life on the line so that the civilians - no matter who they were - in his precinct would be safe. Also, KHUSHWANT SINGH, the young author from Hoshiarpur/Chandigarh for traveling around the world to chronicle the tales of the Sikh and Punjabi diaspora.
29: Taran (London, United Kingdom), November 18, 2012, 2:08 PM.
Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. Words can't express our debt to him. People like him get nominated by the Akal Purakh to do special tasks.
30: Amandip Kaur (Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada), November 18, 2012, 2:32 PM.
No one deserves it more than BALPREET KAUR.
31: A. Singh (India), November 19, 2012, 2:38 AM.
Sardar BHAGAT SINGH, the great freedom fighter.
32: Inderpreet (UAE), November 20, 2012, 10:16 AM.
I nominate MANIKA KAUR for this award. Her album, "Bandhana" raised 1 million dhirams that went towards building the Dubai Gurdwara. Her album has also been released in India and has raised a lot of awareness for this gurdwara. I have heard her singing live and I have to say her voice takes me to heaven; when she sings you can feel her love for God and her pain of separation! Her latest shabad, Guru Ram Das Rakho Sarnaee, has the most magical video I have ever seen: the entire video is done with hand shadows and is something the whole world should see. [The video is posted on each of the article pages here on sikhchic.com.] On the Youtube, it says her second album is raising money to help educate impoverished children in India. This is a young, talented Sikh woman who chooses to spend her time doing something worthwhile and more youngsters should take a cue from her. I don't think there are many people who can say they raised 1 million dhirams (approx US $275,000) for any cause! God bless her!
33: Zak Osman (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), November 22, 2012, 8:18 PM.
I nominate SUKHMEET SINGH SACHAL. Why? Because he is one of the kindest and most compassionate persons I know. He organized a group to help build a well in a village in Kenya and being the overachieving student he is, he managed to raise well over $7,000. In addition, he is the head of the McGill science committee for first year students. For this position he was nominated by his peers who know of his unmitigated character and electrifying personality, I, myself, plea for your vote, so you too can acknowledge this unparalleled man.
34: Gurpreet Singh (India), November 23, 2012, 1:12 AM.
My vote goes to MANIKA KAUR for Chic Sikh of the Year 2012. There are two reasons behind that. One is that her album "BANDHANA" I have to say her voice takes me to heaven; when she sings God's praises, one can feel her love for God. Second reason is, "Bandhana" raised 1 million dihirams that went towards building the Dubai Gurdwara. God bless her.
35: Ravi Singh (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), November 24, 2012, 11:19 AM.
KHUSHWANT SINGH, author of Fauja Singh's biography. Khushwant has done a yeoman service to the community by writing on the lives of successful Sikhs worldwide.
36: Gurmeet Kaur (Atlanta, Georgia, USA), November 24, 2012, 8:08 PM.
3B's - BALWANT SINGH (Rajoana), BALPREET KAUR and BRIAN MURPHY.
37: N Singh (Canada), November 24, 2012, 10:21 PM.
I would like to nominate Bhai JAGTAR SINGH HAWARA who, whilst shackled and surrounded by police, was attacked by Hindu extremists, but he was able to slap them in the face and push them back into the gutter from which they had crawled out.
38: Kamin Bedi (Chandigarh, Punjab), November 25, 2012, 8:39 AM.
I want to nominate KHUSHWANT SINGH from Chandigarh, for bringing into the mainstream Sikh success stories from the diaspora. His stories show the hard work put in by him. I wish him all the best for all his projects.
39: Gursimran Kaur (Mohali, Punjab), November 26, 2012, 3:46 AM.
I vote for BHAI BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA for the Chic Sikh for 2012. Although it's good to see so many brilliant and brave Sikhs from around the world as the nominees here, but let's not forget the Sardar who proved that the entire machinery, the government, its Constitution, the President and the judiciary of this country couldn't kill him when the Guru wanted him to live. Let's not forget Prof. Bhullar who has spent his whole life in jail, despite of being innocent. Let's not forget S. Jagtar Singh Hawara, who'll remain in jail, for the panth, until he dies. Let's not forget a Daljit Singh Bittu. Let's not forget the indomitable spirit and courage of Bhai Balwant Singh ji in the face of death and his ability to unite the entire Sikh Panth under the Kesri Nishaan Sahib in March this year ... Lest We Forget!
40: Raj (Australia), November 26, 2012, 9:48 AM.
I nominate MANIKA KAUR for this award. Not only is she young and brilliant but to create a video as magnificent as "Guru Ram Das Rakho Sarnaee" and to choose to sing kirtan and do seva proves that she is a blessed soul. To give all the proceeds of 1 million dhirams to the Dubai gurdwara is a major accomplishment for such a young sardarni that should not go unrecognised. I believe that if she is not chosen as the Chic Sikh of the year, it would be sad because clearly she is chosen by God. I wish her the best of luck in her next project. I have never met her. But I know this is no ordinary soul and I hope the world can see it too.
41: K Kaur (Canada), November 26, 2012, 9:39 PM.
My vote goes to Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. You cannot put a dollar value on the sacrifices of men like Balwant Singh ... what they have done and continue to due is beyond measure.
42: Rachnee Narula (Bangkok, Thailand), November 26, 2012, 11:29 PM.
I nominate MANIKA KAUR for this award, as she has a great heart and raised awareness and money for the gurdwara in Dubai. Her voice is like an angel's and I simply loved her shabad, Mangna. She is now working on a second album to raise money to educate impoverished children in India.
43: Simran Kaur (Birmingham, United Kingdom), November 27, 2012, 11:01 AM.
The WIDOWS and SURVIVORS of the pogroms in Delhi and across the country in 1984 and the decade following -- thousands upon thousands have received little help from any direction, been conned by various outfits claiming 'charitable' work, tortured by agencies, let down by judiciary injustice -- but still, the spirit of these Sikhs is enduring. The "kesri lehar" that was revived around the world under Balwant Singh Rajoana -- saffron waves of freedom highlighted this cover-up of the genocide and the fact that Sikhs have not got justice in India. Lord Inderjit Singh's reaching the House of Lords is amazing, as are all the other extraordinary individuals listed here. But the Widows of 1984-94 -- they have so magnanimously forgiven their own community for having forgotten them.
44: Daljit Singh (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), November 29, 2012, 6:09 PM.
Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA.
45: Simran Singh (Oceanside, California, U.S.A.), December 04, 2012, 8:30 PM.
My choice is Dr Bhai MOHINDER SINGH of Nishkam Seva Jatha. He has kept up the Khalsa spirit of universal love and selfless service by doing a great job with the Sikh community and the interfaith arena. He has been supporting green environment initiatives, celebrating the success of Sikhs internationally by hosting Sikh Awards on Zee Channel, and is also very consistent in his community involvement. I have found him always striving towards universal peace and a one-world family.
46: Navi (Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.), December 06, 2012, 8:56 AM.
I nominate MANIKA KAUR. I have just seen her new video, "Guru Ram Das raakho sarnaa-ee". She is young, talented and enjoys kirtan and seva, she is a great example to youngsters here in America and all over the world! From her profile, I have learnt that she grew up in Australia and she has still managed to hold on to what's valuable while being true to her own light. Best of luck to you, Manika, you look and sing like an angel and may you make many more albums for great causes and more beautiful videos. I believe, with your voice, you can change the world and inspire our youngsters!
47: Akashdeep Singh (USA), December 06, 2012, 3:16 PM.
There are so many people I would like nominate but I guess one person stands out -- Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. He has stood up to a state that wanted him dead. He had no fear but of Waheguru. He looked death in the eye but Waheguru wanted him to live to revive a sleeping movement.
48: Jasveer Kaur (Abohar, Punjab), December 07, 2012, 2:33 AM.
I vote for Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA and Sardarni BALPREET KAUR.
49: Gurteg Singh (New York, USA), December 08, 2012, 1:02 PM.
Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA and Sardarni BALPREET KAUR.
50: Sanjeev (London, United Kingdom), December 10, 2012, 7:14 AM.
I vote for MANIKA KAUR ... my kids listen to her album everyday and they absolutely love her kirtan. When I played her new shabad, 'Guru Ram Das Rakho Sarnaee,' and explained it to them, I was surprised by how much they understood on their own. I could see their faces light up as they connected to God through her voice. Since then they have been asking me to tell them stories about our Gurus and I have seen the same thing happen with other kids who have started listening to Manika's renditions. I have to wholeheartedly thank her. We should encourage her to sing more shabads and do more seva and inspire all of us! God bless her.
51: H Singh (Dubai, UAE), December 11, 2012, 9:24 AM.
I Nominate MANIKA KAUR for this award. Manika is an inspiration to all the Sikh youth of today. Having been raised in Australia, she has managed to not only maintain her identity but to flourish with it. She has chosen to use her God-given talents to sing the praises of God. More importantly, it is commendable the way she has contributed to the community. To raise one million dirhams for the first substantial gurdwara in the modern, Muslim World and moreover to be involved in its development - all, before the age of thirty! I only read about Manika after I saw her nomination for Chic sikh of the Year 2012, and then I decided to do some research and I was rather surprised that someone so young can be so talented (her latest video and shabad has brought tears) and so humble. I went to the Dubai Gurdwara and met her and was surprised to find someone who is a true Sikh and spends her time teaching children tabla and vaaja in addition to composing her own shabads. She told me with so much passion about her next project to educate children in India. I was so touched by this young woman who has been given so much seva in her life that God must find her truly a special soul to give her His gifts. God bless you, Manika - you are truly an inspiration to me and my family!
52: Sukhmeet Singh Dhingra (Dumfries, Virginia, USA), December 11, 2012, 6:51 PM.
I have to vote for Bhai BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. My reason is that he has our community. Also, he's prepared to become a shaheed. A third reason: in the past, he has fought for justice. I believe he should be proclaimed a jathedar as well. A close second would be BALPREET KAUR. She is actually coming to the gurdwara I go to on December 15. I admire her for her standing up to the bully.
53: Ajit Singh Batra (Pennsville, New Jersey, USA..), December 12, 2012, 8:41 AM.
My choice for the Chic Sikh of the year is Lt. BRIAN MURPHY. We will never forget his sacrifice, and we hope he will never forget the Sikh community and will be instrumental in teaching/coaching non-Sikhs about Sikhism and their gurdwaras.
54: Dharamveer Singh Kohra (Los Angeles, California, USA), December 13, 2012, 4:38 AM.
I Nominate MANIKA KAUR this award. Her voice and videos have inspired the young children in our little community far away from Punjab to reconnect with Sikhi. She has managed to touch their souls through her talent and her new way to sing the praises of God. God bless her!
55: Vikram Manchandani (Bristol, United Kingdom), December 13, 2012, 4:42 AM.
MANIKA KAUR - I nominate her for this award. I have read what the others have said on these pages and have just seen her new video. This young woman has done so much at such a young age! I don't want to repeat what others have said but her accomplishments are truly selfless and I believe that she should be the Chic Sikh of this year for displaying true selflessness in her amazing achievements. We need to ensure that the achievements of our youth are feted so that they stand as an example to other youth of today. Manika is a shining example of what the youth of today should be like! God Bless you, Manika! You are really the Chic Sikh of the year whether you win the award or not!
56: Jasraj Singh (Dubai), December 14, 2012, 5:37 PM.
I nominate MANIKA KAUR. I don't know her personally but have heard a lot about her and her family. I have also researched her online (everyone is talking about this young woman after her album was all over PTC and released in India this year). I have also heard her sing live in the gurdwara here and I have to say it is far better than the CD. She is truly incredible. I am not someone who believes in coincidences, destiny is a wonderful thing and this girl has an incredible destiny. Everyone I meet always wants to know more about Manika so here are some of the things I have heard or read which simply proves my point. 1) The Dubai Sheikh signed the permission for the gurdwara on Manika's birthday in 2006 (that was also the year she got married and moved to Dubai). 2) The permission was given to her in-laws, an amazing family who have done a lot of seva for the community. 3) Manika creates an album to raise money for the gurdwara and raises a whopping one million dhirams. 4) Her own parents gave the four amazing golden palkis to the Dubai gudwara and I have heard also done a lot of seva. 5) I was at the gurdwara on the 20th morning at the Grand Opening when she sang an incredible shabad, "putaa mataa ki asees (I can't find the track online anywhere), turns out it was her son's first birthday that day! What a wonderful gift for a mother! These are not coincidences ... this is destiny and at such a young age to accomplish so much ... just imagine what is in her very bright future! All the above aside, I think Manika should win just because of her new video, 'Guru Ram Das Rakho Sarnaee', simply because no one has ever created anything like it; it's beautiful and clearly a lot of love and hard work has gone into producing something of such a high standard and quality. Just for this video alone that everyone should watch. Manika is Dubai's good luck charm! I wish her all the best and am looking forward to the next album. Also, please go through and read her replies to people's comments on her YouTube channel ... she is truly humble and enlightened but the work really speaks for itself! God bless you, Manika Kaur.
57: Gurdarshan Singh Kler (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), December 15, 2012, 10:03 AM.
If the judges allow me, I would like my nominations to be divided in the following categories: For the Sikh Dharam: male - BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA. Female - I nominate MANIKA KAUR. For uplifting the Sikh Dharam in the eye of the world: BALPREET KAUR, female, and FAUJA SINGH, male. Groups: The UNITED SIKHS & the FAMILIES OF THE MARTYRS OF 1984. Non-Sikh: male: Lt. BRIAN MURPHY. Fmale: Malala Yousafsai. Otherwise, if single nomination: MANIKA KAUR.
58: Harmik Singh (Brampton, Ontario, Canada), December 15, 2012, 10:25 PM.
BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA and BALPREET KAUR.
59: Kuldeep (Crawley, United Kingdom), December 17, 2012, 6:13 AM.
I know no one in general has heard of him, and he occasionally comments here, but I think British born Punjabi writer RUPINDERPAL 'ROOP' SINGH DHILLON should be short listed due to his stirling efforts in writing in Punjabi despite adversity in India and few of the rest of his generation in the diaspora being capable of the same. A true miracle that someone can teach himself Gurmukhi and achieve so many amazing e-novels and actual ones! People can google his name to see who I am taking about ... what he has done is no less than what Fauja Singh did for running.
60: Pardeep Singh (Canada), December 19, 2012, 1:09 PM.
BALDEV SINGH from Bradford, U.K. - The greatest sikhchic.com commentator! Therefore the Chic Sikh of the Year!
61: Manjeet Kaur (India ), December 20, 2012, 4:45 AM.
I nominate KHUSHWANT SINGH from Chandigarh. He has endlessly strived to bring out stories of the Sikhs into the mainstream through his writings. His work needs to be recognized and the award is one such way to do it.
62: Jaipreet Rana (Chandigarh, Punjab), December 20, 2012, 5:12 AM.
BHAGAT SINGH. Everyone has forgot him today, sometimes I feel that his sacrifice has gone in vain.
63: Amrik Singh Ahdan (United Kingdom), December 22, 2012, 5:46 AM.
Each year we get to know of many worthy Sikhs (and non-Sikhs) who deserve our gratitude and recognition. However, not to mention the pillars and mentors of the Sikh community in diaspora countries, like retired senior civil servant, scholar and activist, Sardar GURMUKH SINGH of UK, would be to miss the point.
64: Y. Singh (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), December 24, 2012, 1:43 PM.
HARINDER SINGH of SikhRI & Punjab Digital Library. YouTube and listen to him sharing Sikhi and inspiring Sikhs! And BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA for inspiring Sikhs around the world.
65: H Kaur (London, United Kingdom), December 25, 2012, 2:17 AM.
This is BHAI BALWANT SINGH RAJOANA's year while we are reminded of so many others in the Sikh diaspora countries. RAVINDER SINGH of Khalsa Aid, HARMANDER SINGH, S. Fauja Singh's trainer, the award winning Malaysian motor-cyclist crime buster JOE MAHINDER SINGH and, more recently JATINDERPAL SINGH of the Scots Guards in front of Buckingham Palace, UK, come to mind. We need both, steady "work-horses" behind the scenes, and those who, most deservedly, grab the headlines.
66: Khushwant Singh (Chandigarh, Punjab), December 28, 2012, 7:38 AM.
I am thankful to my readers and well-wishers for recommending my name for the Chic Sikh of the year 2012 Honour. Since I have miles to go before I am even considered award-worthy, my personal choice for the award would be Lt BRIAN MURPHY for his courage.
67: Harpreet Singh (Delhi, India), December 31, 2012, 10:29 PM.
ARPANA Caur and her team for arranging such a great gathering in honour of the 1984 Sikh genocide victims in New Delhi and BALPREET KAUR, as well as ALL ORDINARY SIKHS who instead of so many pressures, etc. are still 'flying the flag'!