Canadian Sikh Heritage | Sarvan Singh Gill
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Sarvan Singh Gill

Sarvan Singh Gill was born on 3rd December, 1933 in Village Chak, Tehsil Toba Teak Singh, District Lyallpur, West Punjab, Pakistan. After partition, his family moved to East Punjab near district Ludhiana. He first came to Canada in 1981 on a visitor’s visa sponsored by his brother. After that his son Harmail Singh, who also came to Canada in 1981, sponsored him permanently in 1984. Mr. Sarvan Singh has two sons named Harmail Singh and Kulwinder Singh and his first wife Balvir Kaur died a few years later. After his wife’s death he got remarried in 1987 to Karamjit Kaur.

He has 4 brothers and 2 sisters and only one brother lives in India and rest are settled in Canada. After he first came to Canada, he went back to visit India in 1986, then in 1987 and 1988 respectively. His second wife Karamjit Kaur came to Canada in 1990. When Mr. Sarvan first came to Canada he stayed in Vancouver and then he moved to Toronto (where his sister lived) and worked as a security guard. He earned $4.50 per hour as a security guard and slowly his pay reached to earn $11 per hour. He took a few English classes to learn basic English and he thoroughly enjoyed these classes as he got a chance to participate in many class activities.

During his stay in Toronto, Sarvan Singh recalls an incident when he was home from a walk and some white kids called him names, looked at him and started to spit. Sarvan Singh said “What is the matter with you, shame on you?” The boys started staring at him and left.

After retiring in 2005 he came to Abbotsford. He started doing cross school guard job for 3 hours every day. So he was able to make $33 every day. He made a few friends while  going to gurdwara. Many people knew him because he was the sarpanch (head) of his village.