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S.Rajinder Singh Virdee (Arshi)


    " S. Rajinder Singh ‘Arshi’ (Virdee) is a well-known Ramgarhia personality in the UK. He is a fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA). Away from his professional work, he is popular among people as a kirtanya (Gurbani singer). He has performed on Gurudwara stages all over the UK and occasionally in India and other places. Apart from Kirtan, Arshi ji also writes widely on Gurbani and Sikhi in journals and on his website (www.arshiwaves.co.uk).."

     He has contributed 5 CD’s to the musical world. I met him during my visit to the UK to celebrate Maharaja Jassa Singh Ramgarhia Day at Leicester. His speech on the life and achievements of Maharaja Jassa Singh was impressive, memorable and touching the heart. It was highly appreciated by the audience

   S. Rajinder Singh was born to Sardarni Harbnas Kaur Chana and S. Balwant Singh Virdee in the early forties at village Partappura Distt Jalandhar. His father S. Balwant ran a furniture workshop in Nairobi, Kenya and was a well-known classical and Gurbani singer. S. Balwant Singh ji moved from Nairobi to the UK in 1965, soon to be followed by his family in 1967 and 1968.

    After three years of primary education from his home village, Rajinder Singh joined his father at Nairobi, Kenya. He did Senior Cambridge in 1958. He was a good athlete, hockey player and singer. Right from childhood he showed strong leanings towards music and in his earlier years performed on most stages singing his own compositions of folk music. He won the best male singer award in a competition in Nairobi. From childhood Rajinder had played harmonium and performed kirtan with his father in Gurudwaras. He also performed as a singer on the Voice of Kenya (now Kenya Broadcasting Corporation).

     In 1958, due to some family issues his father could not carry on his furniture business at Nairobi. Rajinder, being the eldest son, had to abandon his studies to give his father support in raising a young family. He joined the Survey of Kenya as a cartographer (map maker). There he set a record of passing all three qualifying exams, theoretical and practical, of Cartography (the study and practice of making maps).

    As mentioned earlier, Rajinder had moved to the UK in 1968 where he continued working as cartographer. Seeing its limited scope in the future he began studying accountancy in 1974 whilst still working as a freelance cartographer. After completing the requisite exams he graduated as an associate of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and later progressed to become a Fellow. After a few years in the industry, he joined a university as a lecturer in accounts and taxation. He has delivered lectures extensively both in the UK and abroad (Russia and China among other countries). He received an award of excellence for lecturing from a London university. Presently, he is lecturing in private institutes and universities. During all this time Rajinder never comprised with his Sikhi principles, particularly preserving the sanctity of hair.


   In the late sixties and early seventies Rajinder, with his father and younger brother Parminder helped in establishing Gurudwaras in East London. The father and son team performed Kirtan at several Gurudwaras in the UK.  He also served as the secretary of the Ramgarhia Gurudwara in East London for several years. He had to give up this duty to complete his accountancy exams.

     In his earlier years in the UK, Rajinder organised and participated in several cultural programmes in town halls and other venues. Rajinder Singh ‘Arshi’ married on 23rd February 1964 to Sarjit Kaur, the eldest daughter of Sdn. Mohinder Kaur and S. Phuman Singh Sahota of Kenya.

The couple is blessed with two sons who are very successful in their respective fields.


M  E  S  S  A  G  E  .  .  .

"  It is our duty to guide our children to have faith in Gurbani, Because Gurbani provide us solace and peace

Address : 59-Marstone garden, Luton, Bedfordshire-lu27dx, website www.arshiwaves.co.uk

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