Day: April 7, 2022

Ranjit Singh, Blacksmith, Daun

Machines can never replace what’s done with hands. All this repair work you see, this fine finishing with these tools is handwork, there’s no machine you can place it under and get such results. I’ve been here for 35 years and I don’t think I will leave soon.

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Baljit Singh, Carpenter, Mohali

We are carpenters from 15 generations. Our ancestors worked for ‘the Sodhis’ of Ferozpur. It was the honesty of my people that appealed to them. We were to take care of their agricultural machines and daily needs.

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Bhagat Singh, Knife grinder, maker and locksmith, Patiala

These shops (around Qila Mubaarak) used to be stables of royal horses. They changed into shops as the monarchs left the fort. My father and grandfather used to work as mechanics for Maharaja Bhupinder Singh and on the side they would bring Sikh kakaars (steel bangles and wooden combs) from Amritsar and sell them in Patiala

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Gagandeep Singh, Palki maker, Amritsar

My grandfather worked his hardest to bring us to Amritsar from Jaiwali, 25 KMs from here. He learned the woodwork from a craftsman here and started his own business later on. Then bought a house before establishing this shop next to the Golden Temple.

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Mohamad Rasheed, Net Maker, Harike

Originally, we are from Bijnour, U.P. My grandfather came with a group of fishermen who got a contract to fish at Harike more than fifty years ago. After the contract was over, he decided to stay back while the others left.

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Kuljit Singh Papad maker, Amritsar

It was all good before Sukhbir Badal made this heritage street, whatever the nonsense it is. He wanted to build a plaza here and asked us to sell our shops. When we denied, he built this wall ruining the rawness of such a spiritual place.

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