Tribune News Service
Amritsar, December 14
Guru Nanak Dev University on Monday signed an MoU with the Nanak Singh Memorial Trust to establish the Nanak Singh Centre on the premises of Bhai Gurdas library. The members of the trust include family members of the late legendary Punjabi novelist, including his sons Kulwant and Kulbir Singh Suri and his grandson Navdeep Singh Suri.
The centre will be a dedicated space to the literary legacy of Nanak Singh, with the trust providing an assembled collection associated with the life and works of Nanak Singh. The collection will include audio-visual material, photographs, manuscripts, dissertations, a full set of available books by Nanak Singh, rare editions of certain books, awards and personal items used by Nanak Singh during his lifetime and other relevant material. The Trust will provide this collection to the University at its own cost.
Speaking about his grandfather’s legacy, Navdeep Suri, who is a former diplomat and had translated Nanak Singh’s acclaimed work “Khooni Vaisakhi” in English, said, “It is very important for us as a family, as Punjabis or anyone who has interest in Punjabi culture, heritage and literature to take this step towards preserving and sharing his literary legacy. We had a small ambition when we got together as family that literary works of my grandfather must be preserved and shared with all. In my experiences abroad, there have been many Punjabis who told me that they learnt Punjabi so that they could read his novels. So, through this centre we will try to build a connection around his memorabilia.”
“His novels had strong themes that are relevant even today. To encourage that kind of dialogue, a Nanak Singh memorial lecture will also be conducted by university based on the theme connected with his writings. Apart from this, we will also be announcing an annual award for Best Punjabi novel with cash prize of Rs 25,000 to encourage Punjabi writers as Punjabi novel writing is becoming a dying art,” shared Suri.
The family is also keen on restoring the Nanak Singh’s house at Preet Nagar that gets keen visitors even today. “It will make suitable arrangements to protect, conserve and display the collection and make it accessible to faculty, students and members of the general public,” said Dr Jaspal Singh Sandhu, VC, GNDU.