Ranjit Manak


Date of Birth:
Nanaimo, BC
Current City:
Duncan, BC

Ranjit Manak was born in Nanaimo, BC on April 4, 1940. His grandfather first immigrated to Canada in 1906 and his father immigrated in 1921 when he was only eight years old. His father dropped out of school in grade eight and started working in the Sahltam mill in New Westminster. After that he started his own business and had a lodging truck for a few years and eventually, bought his own saw mill.

Ranjit also worked at his father’s mill for about five years, but when it shut down, he came back to Duncan, BC. Growing up in Duncan, Ranjit got along with all of the diverse members of his community. The Punjabi community celebrated Vaisakhi, Christmas, and had Jor melas (get-together) in Paldi. In May they celebrated Bhabra da Jor mela in Vancouver.  Ranjit remembers the founder of Paldi, Mr. Mayo, sitting on the same bench every year during the Jor melas. They also celebrated Indian Independence Day in August during the 1950s. Ranjit went to India for the first time in 1971 to get married. According to Ranjit, most of the Punjabi community all got along with one another while he was growing up, working and living on the Island.