The coffee-table book, a pictorial biography of Colonel Raghbir Singh, spans 134 pages and has been penned by retired Punjabi University history professor SM Verma.
A pictorial biography of Colonel Raghbir Singh, the former chief minister of the erstwhile state of Patiala and East Punjab States Union (PEPSU), was released at the Chandigarh Golf Club on Sunday evening.
The coffee-table book spanning 134 pages has been penned by retired Punjabi University history professor SM Verma. It was released by chief guest former Jammu and Kashmir DGP and present trustee of the Tribune Trust Gurbachan Jagat, the former chief minister’s son Karanbir Singh Sandhu and daughters Amarjit Kaur and Manjit Kaur.
Speaking on the occasion, Karanbir Singh Sandhu said, “My father was the CM of a state that was put together in the turmoil of Partition and the royal states’ breaking up and merger into one state. Collecting material for the book was no joke as he passed away when I was just 13. It has been a long journey since and I am glad that we have reached this milestone.”
“My father has not received the importance, which was due. He was a tall political leader, who played a massive role in the history of PEPSU politics during difficult times,” he added.
On the unsung but illustrious legacy of the colonel, Verma said, “Col Raghbir Singh became chief minister of PEPSU state thrice. He was nominated once and elected twice. In 1933, Maharaja Bhupinder Singh duly recognised the services rendered by Raghbir Singh by giving him the honorary rank of Colonel. The same year he was elevated to the position of Sardar Sahib Deorhi Mullah, minister in-charge of household in Patiala state, a position given to the most trusted person of the Maharaja.”
Verma also recalled the colonel’s first meeting with the Maharaja, saying, “Maharaja Bhupinder Singh saw the colonel on the cricket ground, and was so impressed that he invited him to visit him after graduating college and said he would find him a position in the service of the state.”