Iran’s connection to India’s Sikhs

By Maya Mirchandani
Tehran (TIP):

It could simply be lore now, but if the story Jugal Kishore, the principal of Tehran’s new Kendriya Vidyalaya told us is true, Iran’s province of Zahedan was named for the Sikh gentlemen, called Zaheds- the pious- by the Shah at the time.
It was called Dozdab before being rechristened. Dozd for bandit, Ab for water. So in Persian it literally meant -a town of bandits by the water. When the Shah visited, he found Sikh gentlemen in white robes, and flowing beards and asked what they were doing among the thieves. And that’s how Zahedan got its name.
Zahedan was also the place where Narender Kaur Sahni was born, 74 years ago. Her parents had arrived from the Punjab in their youth, beckoned by the promise of a better life in the transport business. For the Sikhs, Iran is sacred ground, in their “Taqdeer” as the priest in the local Gurudwara says, while addressing the sangat and its special guest, Mrs Gursharan Kaur. They believe that Guru Nanak

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