AMRITSAR: Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, has instituted an annual lecture series in the memory of late Jagtar Singh Dhesi at the School of Social Sciences under Decian Heritage Endowment Fund.
The first Jagtar Singh Dhesi Annual Lecture will be delivered during 2012-13 academic session of GNDU and will be organised by Dr SS Sohal, Head of the School.
The School stated the annual lecture series will be in held in keeping with Dhesi’s vision of a humane and tolerant world community transcending differences and divides.
Dhesi was born in village Dhesian Kahna (Jalandhar), in 1948, migrated to England in 1964, and became a social worker, firstly as an executive member of the National Union of Teachers and later, when he held an influential position of Secretary, Newham Parliamentary Constituency Labour Party for a number of years.
During this period, he made a notable contribution to the integration of immigrants into the host society. His wife, Harmesh, science graduate from London and a teacher, got elected with his support to the Local Borough Council and became Deputy Chairperson of its powerful Education Committee responsible for running a large number of schools, institutes/colleges of technical education.
Before he took to social work, Jagtar Singh did diploma in electronics, BSc (Hons) in Physics from University of London after which he joined Newham Borough of London Education Authority, and taught computer science and mathematics there. Later he did MSc in nuclear physics as a part-time student from University of London.
Inspired by liberal, progressive thought, Dhesi shunned narrow dogmatic social, political, and economic ideas. He always showed keen concern and compassion for the well-being of his students, especially those from deprived homes. Above all, he became a proud Londoner.
Notwithstanding his failings, he succeeded to make a positive contribution to society that merits some recognition, the School of Social Sciences stated. Dhesi died in 1993 at 45.