Coventry gets its first British Sikh Lord Mayor

Coventry gets its first British Sikh Lord Mayor

Jaswant Singh Birdi, who was born in Punjab and spent some time as a child in Calcutta in West Bengal, moved to Coventry 60 years ago and has served as a local councillor in the city for 16 years.

The Conservative Party councillor recently took formal charge of his new post of Lord Mayor with the official Chains of Office with wife Krishna by his side as the Lord Mayoress.

Birdi said: “I am so proud to become Lord Mayor of my adopted home city. It has given so much to myself and my family over the years and I will be honoured to show why I love it so much and to promote the city and the wonderful people who live here.

“As a Sikh, it also means so much that I will be wearing the Chains of Office and the turban. It will help show what a happy multicultural city we have and maybe inspire others as well."

In the 1950, Birdi migrated with his parents to Kenya in East Africa, where he had his primary and secondary education, and immigrated to the UK in the 60s to carry on with his further education.

Apart from being a councillor, Birdi has been actively involved in setting up religious, social, and community projects in Coventry. Now in his role as Lord Mayor as an ambassador of the city, his chosen charities for support for the year include Muscular Dystrophy charity, the Coventry Resource Centre for the Blind, and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire Charity.

He served as Deputy Lord Mayor for the past 12 months and was presented with the Chains of Office at the Annual General Meeting at Coventry Cathedral last month, a ceremony attended by members of his family.


Coventry gets its first British Sikh Lord Mayor
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He succeeds Councillor Kevin Maton in the role of Lord Mayor and Councillor Mal Mutton has been named as the Deputy Lord Mayor for the coming year.

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