I was forced to leave the country after spending 45 years in a small village ‘Gag’ in the backward part of the northern Indian state of Punjab. Social issues, socialist perspectives, refutation of conservative traditions, scientific thinking, religious narrow-mindedness and humanistic approaches have been the main themes of my writings. I mainly write poetry and most of it has been rebellious.
In parallel I have written articles, stories, satires and almost every one of my writings has been the subject of discussion. Despite many controversiesover my writings this pen has continued running. The value of a writer comes only when the impact of his writings begins to be accepted by the societyand this honor has come to me. There are many readers who have changed their minds after reading my writings. My writings have been critical towards the anti-people policies of the state and I have received the ‘reward’ for it. Sometimes I have lost the local membership of the Writers’ Association and sometimes I have faced government and non-governmental repression. I have also had to go to jail for my outspoken writings and ideology and I have been subjected to physical and mental torture. My family and I suffered terribly. I have faced derogatory language and threats from anti-social elements and religious organizations. But leaving my homeland is the thing I have suffered the most during this literary journey. When there is a desire in the mind to create a good society then the profit and loss remain very small things. So this pen continues and will continue.
I love my country
Text in Punjabi: Gag Baani (Surjit Gag)
Translation into English: Prerna Vij
Translation into Finnish: Helena Sinervo
Read in Punjabi by Gag Baani (Surjit Gag)
Read in Finnish by Eeva Soivio
Read in English by Miiko Toiviainen
I love my country, in Punjabi
I love my country, in Finnish
I love my country, in English