Punjabi University celebrating 150th birth anniversary of Bhai Veer Singh- a multifaceted personality
Kanwar Inder Singh/ February 15,2023
“Bhai Veer Singh is not only referred to as the pioneer of modern Punjabi poetry but his other works illustrate him as multifaceted personality. The entrepreneurship is reflected in his role to establish Punjab and Sind Bank and a printing press in Amritsar. He worked as a publisher and distributor. Tracts written by him could attract interests of readers and create dialogue around issues of his time”. These views were expressed by various scholars at the Punjabi University today on the commencement of the three-day conference dedicated to the 150th birth anniversary of Bhai Veer Singh.
While enunciating the opening speech of this World Conference being organized by the Bhai Veer Singh Chair established at Punjabi University, Patiala. With reference of Bhai Veer Singh’s writings, Punjab’s Chief Secretary, Vijay Kumar Janjua said, “We need to make the literature reach to the common people. We all need to work in unison to achieve this goal.
Prof. Satinder Singh in his keynote address commented that Bhai Veer Singh not only wrote in Punjabi language but also played a pioneering role in the present status of Punjabi language. Bhai Veer Singh made great contribution in the formation of modern idiom of Punjabi language. He said that Bhai Sahib opened new horizons with his literature and other constructive works due to which he has the status of being a pioneer in many fields. He said that we still need to understand many layers of Bhai Veer Singh’s personality.
During the inagural session Dr. Rawel Singh informed about the theme that the prose of Bhai Veer Singh has still not been read through the required extensive study. Speaking with reference to Bhai Sahib’s tracts, he told how he was creating a dialogue through this prose. At that time when the country was on the verge of becoming independent and our nation needed clarity on many crucial issues for building its future, Bhai Veer Singh was trying to create a dialogue about it through tracts. Padma Sri awardee Baba Sewa Singh, Khadur Sahib, who was present as a special guest on this occasion, spoke with reference to Bhai Veer Singh’s poem ‘Dali Naalon Tod Na Saanu’ and said how he beautifully he taught the lesson of being one with Nature.
During his presidential speech, Vice Chancellor Prof. Arvind said that Bhai Veer Singh can be particularly remembered for three points. The first is that he chose Punjabi language as his medium of expression at a time when other languages were preferred around him. Infact he advised to write in other languages instead of Punjabi. Secondly he works in literary genres like short poem and novel which were not part of Punjabi literary scene. Thirdly, his contribution is acknowledged and appreciated by people who do not agree with his ideology. That speaks volumes about his contribution.
In charge of Bhai Veer Singh Chair Prof. Harjodh Singh shared information about the family of Bhai Veer Singh during his welcome speech. Vote of thanks was delivered by Dean Academic Affairs Prof. Ashok Kumar Tiwari. During the inaugural session, books related to the selected works of Bhai Veer Singh edited by renowned Punjabi poet Surjit Patar and Editor of Punjabi Tribune, Swarajbir was released. It is worth mentioning that machine transliteration of selected poems of Bhai Veer Singh have been done from ‘Gurmukhi’ to ‘Shahmukhi’ with the help of a software developed by Punjabi University so that the entire Punjabi world can enjoy his works.
Punjabi University celebrating 150th birth anniversary of Bhai Veer Singh- a multifaceted personality .Prof Arvind added that hundred poems have been machine transliteration of hundred poems of Bhai Veer Singh is a pilot project. Punjabi University plans to produce hundred books in both the scripts. Before the inaugural session, an art exhibition based on the works of Bhai Veer Singh was inaugurated by Chief Secretary Vijay Kumar Janjua and Vice Chancellor Prof. Arvind organized by Sardar Sobha Singh Department of Fine Arts in collaboration with Museum and Art Gallery. This exhibition will continue till February 28th. Photo artist and social activist Ranjodh Singh was present as the chief guest on this occasion