first Asian Mayor of Gloucester city from May 21, 2007
Gloucester, UK, May 14, 2007
Nirmal Singh Khalon
NRI Harjit Singh Gill, 52, Hockey player will take over as the
527th Mayor of Gloucester. He will be the first Asian mayor of the
city. Recently he won the council elections in Gloucester on the
Labor party ticket.
Gill said, "As mayor one has to look after the entire city
and not just one community. I am looking forward to this assignment.
My experience as being twice mayor of Barton and Sheriff of Gloucester
will help me in the new assignment."
In 2004, at the age of 49, he had become the first Asian of the
UK to get appointed as the Sheriff of Gloucester city. He was working
as a labor councilor for two wards in Barton and Tredworth. The
Labor Party nominated him as his name was formally proposed at the
annual meeting of the Gloucester city council recently.
- In 1999, Mr Gill became the first Asian mayor of Barton
- In 2000, he was appointed again on the post
- In 2003, he became the first ever Asian of Gloucester to have
lunch with the Queen.
- In 2004, Gill became the first elected Sheriff of Gloucester.
Harjit Singh Gill was born in Dakoha village near Jallundher, Punjab
India. At the age of 23, he moved to England in 1978. He had his
schooling in the village school and after doing primary, he went
to N D Victor High Secondary School in the Army area. His parents
were in business with a transport company and Harjat next went to
college to study for a MA in political science.
- Harjit became a good hockey player and played for Indian University
Punjab and the rest of India.
- One of his uncles represented India in the 1972 Olympics and
was vice-captain of the Indian hockey team and he was the second
best scorer in the Olympics. He even scored a hat-trick against
- Harjit's younger brother played for Punjab and for the university
before he migrated to the USA. His other brother is in India and
he is a very good businessman, supplying gas all over Punjab..
- A couple of years ago he took the Gloucestershire Police Hockey
team to India to play a five-match tour. He went to different
places and mixed with the people.
After coming UK, he got arranged marriage. Harjit said, 'I had
only seen a photograph of her. My parents had agreed and from the
photograph I said 'Yes'. The Indian hockey team was going to play
Argentina. My friends said that they would stay in England for a
few days after coming from Argentina. So we fixed our marriage for
9th of April 1978 so all the players could attend. It must have
been the first Asian marriage where any or all international players
attended a wedding, so it was very good function.'
The couple have two children - son Gurkamal, 26, and daughter Amrit,
24. His son is in university and his daughter is doing A-levels.
Gill runs two Post Offices in Gloucester and looking back, he feels
that he has several good achievements.