South Asian Heritage Month: Rifat Bashir
My family heritage is from India/Pakistan and both my parents were born in India and lived through partition in 1945. My father a young boy then remembers a lot of it and the struggles that followed including the sad death of his father during the horrendous journey they made to the newly formed Pakistan. They migrated from a village in Nihal Singh, Moga District of Punjab State. Once arrived in Pakistan they were given land and home in a village (Chak/village no 156) near to the town of Gojra and city of Layallpur which was later renamed Faisalabad. In later years the area of at the start of the village was named Adda Bashirabad after my fathers’ younger brother who still lives there today. My father came to England in 1965 to work in the textile industry and a few years later my mother joined him with their two children and other family members. Both my parents worked in the textile industry for many years, my mother working the day shift and my father nights. Growing up my parents often reminded us of their early life in India and Pakistan, which hopefully I am keeping alive today with my own children.
Below is a picture of my dad, second from right and maternal grandfather second from left with my mums uncles on either side when they first arrived in Huddersfield, England. The other one is of my parents when my mum came in 1967.