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Community-led exhibit on Sikh diaspora on display at Museum of Surrey

Exhibition to run until May 19
Museum-goers look at artifacts that are part of the new community-led exhibit “Lahore to London: A Journey of Chardi Kala” now on at the Museum of Surrey. (Photo submitted: Museum of Surrey via Connect FM)

A new exhibit on the Sikh diaspora is now showing at the Museum of Surrey.

In a press release, the museum billed the new display as a “community-led” exhibition.

Called, “Lahore to London: A Journey of Chardi Kala,” the exhibit offers museum-goers insights into both the heritage and identity of those in the Sikh diaspora in Canada and around the world.

“The aim of this exhibit is preserving, learning, and sharing in Chardi kala with fellow Canadians” said Raj Singh Bhandall, curator of Wanjara Nomad Collections.

Chardi Kala, a Punjabi term meaning “ascending energy” is a belief in Sikhism that an adherent should aspire to maintain a mental state of eternal resilience, optimism, and joy.

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“We are excited to have selections from this collection on display for Surrey residents,” said Lynn Saffery, museum manager. “It is an opportunity to deepen our understanding of the communities here in Surrey.”

The community-led exhibit features artifacts from the Wanjara Nomad collection. The collection has more than 1,230 rare books, “meticulously curated to illuminate the multifaceted history of the Sikh diaspora, the East India Company, and the British Empire,” among other items.

The Wanjara Nomad Collections is an online repository of Sikh heritage artifacts with an office located in South Surrey. The organization has a goal of opening a bricks and mortar museum one day.

Some of the featured books on display in the exhibit at the Museum of Surrey include: historical works like the “Annexation of the Punjab and the Maharajah Duleep Singh” (1882), “Punjab-Court and Camp of Runjeet Singh” (1840) which is a valuable historical account about Maharaja Runjeet Singh’s court and military camp during the Sikh empire, and the “Personal scrapbook of Princess Sophia Duleep Singh.”

According to the release, the Museum of Surrey wants area residents “to engage with this exhibit, gain insight into the intricate threads of Sikh history, and reflect on the diverse tapestry of Surrey’s community.”

“Lahore to London: A Journey of Chardi Kala” will run until May 19.

To find out more info, call the museum at 604-592-6956, or email them via, or visit

For more info on Wanjara Nomad Collections, visit

The Museum of Surrey is located at 17710 56A Avenue in Cloverdale.

Malin Jordan

About the Author: Malin Jordan

Malin is the editor of the Cloverdale Reporter.
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