Amarjit K. Mangat

 

Date of Birth:
1951
Birthplace:
Village Uppal Khalsa, Punjab
Current City:
Surrey, BC

Amarjit Mangat was born in the village Uppal Khalsa, Punjab on 30th March 1951.  She moved to Canada in 1968 because her father moved to Canada in 1906 and was a Canadian citizen. At the age of 22, Amarjit also became a Canadian citizen. She travelled alone from India and landed in Vancouver where she lived with her brothers and their family. When she landed in Canada she had no difficulties with her arrival as she already had a Canadian passport. She felt totally different being in Canada compared to India as she found Canada to be a nice and clean environment and everyone seemed friendly. She arrived in June and was enrolled in high school in grade 9. She faced no discrimination back then but she did have a hard time communicating with other students and teachers in English. She knew basic English which helped her get through high school. Over the years her English has improved and she has been doing well in Canada.

She enjoyed her community life because there weren’t many Punjabi people living back then and she felt was a tight-knit community. For example, she calls everyone being very friendly and inviting each other over to their homes. During Christmas, all of the families used to get together and exchange chocolates. This had become their tradition as no one had extended families. The community also used to get together at the gurdwara or at weddings. Amarjit’s father moved back to India once all her siblings were in Canada because he was elderly and wanted to live in India with his wife as Amarjit’s mother never came to Canada. Once all the children were settled in Canada, they called their parents to live with them. Both of Amarjit’s parents passed away in Canada.  Amarjit has only been to India four times since she moved to Canada as they have little family left in India. Luckil, since Amarjit moved to Canada she didn’t face any discrimination or struggle too much in Canada. She worked at Canada Post in Downtown Vancouver for eighteen years and eventually retired to stay at home with her children.