Dr. K.P Singh receives “Gold Medal”
Dr. Satinath Choudhary
Celebration of Guru Ravidas’s birth anniversary took place from January 30 to February 11, 2001. More than 3,000 people came for the celebration on February 11, 2001 at Shri Guru Ravidas Sabha, 61-02 Broadway, Woodside, New York, USA 11277. Highlight of the celebration was a “Gold medal” award along with “Saropa” to Dr. KP Singh for his achievement in obtaining the degree of Doctorate in Philosophy (Ph.D.) from the Department of Sociology and Asian Languages and Literature of the prestigious University of Wisconsin, Madison. The over-packed hall reverberated with the chant of “Jo Bole So Nihal, Sat Sree Akaal” as Dr. Singh received the award. Heartiest congratulations to Dr. K.P. Singh for receiving such precious award and honor from our Dalit community.
Even before Dr. Singh was officially awarded the degree, he received the offer of Assistant Professor from University of Washington, Seattle, another notable university in the USA. The title of Dr. Singh’s Ph.D. dissertation was “Antecedent conditions for collective violence against Dalits in India.” Dr. Singh came to the USA in 1995 as an Ambedkar Fellow awarded by the Government of India. He was the only Dalit out of eight Ambedkar Fellowship awarded by the Indian Government. The Gurudwara awarded the gold medal to Dr. Singh in recognition of the above mentioned achievements and for the services rendered by him to our Dalit community in India as well as here in the USA.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Singh highlighted the historical importance of Guru Ravidas and Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar to all Dalits. Dr. Singh emphasized on the Dalit Unity and struggle against discrimination. He also exhorted in his thunder voice that we all should feel proud to call ourselves as Dalits as we all belong to a rich heritage. Tears rolled down from the eyes of Dalits when he shared about the discriminations that he faced during his childhood and how he rose to be a recipient of Doctorate from one of the premier universities in the USA and now teaching in another noteworthy university, the University of Washington-Seattle.
I am pleased to inform you that the Punjabi community who attended the celebration donated over $ 100,000 to Shri Ravidas Temple. Among other thing, the Gurudwara plans to construct an Ambedkar Library and fix the basement to facilitate Langars and other events.
Prof. Owen M. Lynch of New York University, a longstanding friend of Dalits and their cause was there as usual. Our elder brother Mr. P.P. Lakshman was there. Dr. Satinath Choudhary was there as well among the thousands of attendees.
The Program Started at: 10.00 A.M., Sukhasan took place 7.00 P.M, Langars were held at: 12.00 P.M. and 6.00 P.M.
Notable among the Ragis were:
Chief organizers of the grand event were:
Members at large: Mr. Dayal Karda Mr. Prithi Pal