Canadian Ramgarhia Society has honored Professor Pervaiz Vandal and Professor Sajida Vandal, architects and educationists from Pakistan, with lifetime achievement awards for their research work in highlighting the architectural legacy of Bhai Ram Singh, one of pre-partition Punjab’s foremost architects.
Born in 1858 in Gurdaspur, and died in 1916 in Lahore, Bhai Ram Singh’s most famous works include Lahore Museum, Aitchison College, Chamba House, Punjab University and Mayo School of Arts in Lahore, the Islamia College in Peshawar, and the College of Agriculture in Faisalabad.
Both Prof Pervaiz Vandal and Prof Sajida Vandal were nominated for awards in August 2022 on the occasion of the 164th birthday celebrations of Bhai Ram Singh by Sikh scholar Jaiteg Singh Anant who heads the Hardarshan Memorial International Trust in Canada.
Besides Jaiteg Singh Anant, Canadian Ramgarhia Society President Dharam Singh Panesar, Punjabi poet Surindar Singh Jabal, and Avtar Singh Adampuri joined the event in America’s Seattle city on the West Coast to meet and honor the visiting Pakistani legends. On the occasion, Prof Pervaiz Vandal thanked the Canadian Ramgarhia Society for special honor.
He said that this award will be cherished as a great memory as it was associated with Bhai Ram Singh, one of the greatest architects of Punjab. He paid glowing tribute to Bhai Ram Singh for his rich architectural legacy and outstanding work, which is still alive and visible in the form of beautiful arches, domes, brackets, and pavilions as his signature elements for various monumental buildings of Lahore and inside India.
He also mentioned the cultural similarities and interfaith harmony between Muslim and Sikhs, which resulted in a peaceful atmosphere of coexisting in Punjab for centuries. The Canadian Ramgarhia Society also presented him books – Ramgarhia Virasat and Chacha Vancouveria – written by Surindar Singh Jabal, the public relations officer of the society. Punjabi poets Hardam Singh Mann, Avtar Singh Adampuri, and others were also present.
Prof Pervaiz Vandal pays glowing tribute to Bhai Ram Singh for his rich architectural legacy and outstanding work
Jaiteg Singh Anant presented his tribute to Prof Pervaiz Vandal for his great services as former pro vice chancellor of the Institute of Art and Culture and the founder of the Trust for History of Art and Architecture in Pakistan (THAAP). He said that Pervaiz Vandal has contributed immensely in the field of architecture and achieved the status of a legend among his peers.
He also said that Prof Sajida Vandal needs no introduction as she was a recipient of the French civil award Chevalier de I’Ordre des Arts er Letters, which reflects her immense contributions in arts and culture and heritage preservation. He praised the book of Prof Perviaz Vandal and Prof Sajida Vandal and also talked about the rich legacy of Bhai Ram Singh as master architect of the Khalsa College in Amritsar.
Surindar Singh Jabal acknowledged the research work of Prof Pervaiz Vandal and Prof Sajida Vandal on Bhai Ram Singh and said their research was very commendable for Sikh heritage and Diaspora. He said that their book – Raaj Lahore and Bhai Ram Singh – was a prestigious contribution for all Sikh community living around the globe. “We feel privileged for awarding such an authentic research work.”
Canadian Ramgarhia Society president Dharam Singh Panesar congratulated the visiting dignitaries and said that Muslims and Sikhs shared common social customs and traditions and have lived peacefully for centuries in Punjab. He said that Prof Pervaiz Vandal and Prof Sajida Vandal have achieved distinct place in Eastern Punjab for their precious research work on Bhai Ram Singh.