Mapping’ Sikh Heroes: A Website bringing the World War I Soldiers out from the footnotes of the world history

Mapping Sikh Heroes A Website bringing the World War I Soldiers out from the footnotes of the world history pardesi news 1469166680

Website to preserve history of World War One Sikh soldiers was recently launched. The website will capture unknown tales of Sikhs army warriors during The Great War, which otherwise has just remained, only a footnote in the world history.

A website titled Empire, Faith & War: The Sikhs and World War One, is funded by a grant of approximately 448,500 pounds (Rs 4 crore) from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). This website intends to record the contribution of Sikhs to the First World War (1914-18).

There is even NO memorial for the Indian soldiers, for their contributions in these World Wars.

The website will employ for the first time the latest in mapping technology and a crowd-sourcing initiative to preserve family stories that were at risk of being lost forever. It intend to place the information received within the wider narrative of how the first global conflict in history pulled in men, money and materials globally – most notably for the British Empire from India, and the northern state of Punjab, in particular.

Importantly, the Sikhs accounted for less than 1% of the population of India at that time, while them making over 20% of the British Indian armed forces at the outbreak of hostilities. It's not surprising, therefore, that many Sikh families in the UK have a wartime connection but their stories have mostly remained undocumented until now.

The results will be displayed on an interactive 'Soldier Map', created by using the Google Maps technology. Records are pinpointed to a soldier's place of birth, inevitably somewhere in or near the undivided Punjab, rather than to where they may have fought or died. So far, approximately 8,000 records of Sikhs killed in action, taken from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's (CWGC) casualty database have been pinned on the map. 

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Patrick Callahan

Pardesi News Reporter

Pardesi News Reporter

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