New Delhi: A Noted writer, journalist, historian and novelist Khushwant Singh who was known for his liveliness humour and comments laced with cutting wit, got his early education from Government college of Lahore .Later he moved to London for higher education at the King’s College London.
Born on 2 February, 1915 in Khushab district of Punjab Province, Khushwant Singh, practised law in Lahore High Court.His father Shobha Singh was a well known civil contractor and a prominent builder of Lutyens’ Delhi. As a writer, his works range from political commentary and contemporary satire to translations of Sikh religious texts and Urdu poetry. In his write-up and columns, he wrote on day-to-day simple issues for decades.He wrote 35 books and nine short stories, besides penning poems and articles on current and environmental issues. However, it is his book “Train to Pakistan” on the tragic fallout of the India-Pakistan division, which is among his most popular novels.
Over the years, it was adapted into a Bollywood movie too. “Delhi” and “In the Company of Women” are among his eminent works. As a journalist, Khushwant Singh was associated with Akashwani in 1951. Meanwhile, his columns continued to be published in country’s leading newspapers.
He served as an editor for reputed newspapers like ” The Illustrated Weekly of India’, ‘National Herald’, and ‘Hindustan Times, as also, Indian government’s publication “Yojna”. “The History of Sikhs”, published in two parts, is among his famous historical works. Khushwant Singh also served in the foreign services for a few years since 1947.He also served as a nominated Member of Parliament from 1980 to 1986.
Khushwant Singh was awarded Padam Bhushan in 1974 and Padam Vibhushan, the second-highest civilian award in India, in 2007. However, he returned his Padma Bhushan in protest over the infamous army infiltration into the Golden Temple in 1984. He was awarded Sahitya academy fellowship award by the Sahitya academy of India in 2010. Apart from serving as editor of several news magazines, Singh had also served as a nominated MP from 1980 to 1986.