Book Reading and Discussion with Sarbjit Kaur Athwal Author of Shamed: The honour killing that shocked Britain — by the sister who fought for justice

On Thursday, March 15th , the Centre for India and South Asia Research at the University of British Columbia and online Watan magazine will host a Book Reading and Discussion with Sarbjit Kaur Athwal at 5:00 PM in C.K. Choi Building, Room #120, 1855 West Mall, UBC West Point Grey campus.

In 1998, British born Surjit Kaur Athwal went to India with her mother in law and never came back. She was murdered there because her in-laws thought that she was planning to divorce her husband and shame the family. In 2007, Surjit’s mother in-law Bachan Kaur Athwal and her husband Sukhdev Singh Athwal were found guilty for their part in planning this murder and sentenced by court in London.

The decsion to murder Surjit was taken in front of her sister in-law, Sarbjit Kaur Athwal. The testimony of Sarbjit played a key role in the conviction of Bachan Kaur Athwal and Sukhdev Singh Athwal. In order to get ready and then testify in Surjit’s murder, Sarbjit has to face significant obstacles and hardships. She was fearful of her own murder by her in-laws if she went to the police. Instead of taking her side, her husband pressured her to keep silent. Some members of the community accused her of not being a good daugher in-law and that she is falsely maligning the name of her in-laws. How did she overcame all these obstacles in order to get justice for Surjit Kaur Athwal? To tell this story she wrote Shamed: The Honour Killing That Shocked Britain with her co-author Jeff Hudson. Three Canadian writers – Sukhwant Hundal, Sadhu Binning and Gurmail Rai have translated this book in to Punjabi.

On March 17th, the Punjabi edition of Shamed, titled Beizzat, will be launched at 1:00 PM at Dhaliwal Banquet Hall, #230-8166-128 St., in Surrey. In this program, there will be Punjabi and English reading of her book and she will speak about her experience. This program will be in English and Punjabi and is being organized by the Online Watan magazine and Mamta Foundation of Canada.