Jalandhar, June 14 : Known as the unofficial "King" of Bhangra, Malkit Singh is the first Punjabi singer, who was recently honoured with the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE).
Malkit Singh says that the influence of Indian music over the people in the West has increased after he was awarded the MBE by Queen Elizabeth.
"It's a big achievement for me. When it was announced that I was being awarded the 'Member of the British Empire' for my contribution to Punjabi music, the word Punjabi' created a sensation in me. This award is not mine, but it is for all Indians and my fans around the world," said Malkit.
Born in Hussainpur village of Jalandhar, Malkit was listed in the 2000 Guinness Book of World Records as the biggest selling Bhangra artist of all time.
He is most famous for the songs "Guru Nalo Ishq Mita", "Tootak Tootak Tootiyan", "Kurri Garam Jayee", as well as "Chal Hun ".
"'Tutak-Tutak' was the big hit along with the song 'Gur Nalo Ishq Mitha'. Then the era came when people started preferring remixes. I am proud to say that I created a remix of the song 'Gur nalo Ishq Mitha', which everyone liked. None of my songs are inferior to any other. It depends upon the singer how he treats it," he added.
Malkit has performed in 36 countries and earned respect in all places. According to him, no one will forget Punjab and India.
"Not only me, but I think everyone who lives abroad misses India. My song 'Maa Ke Hatho Di Pakiyan Rotiyan Khan nu Bada he Dil Karta' was a big hit because it reflects the eagerness of all those who want to go back to India to have food cooked by their mother," he said.
Malkit, who is in London for the last 24 years, said young artists do not forget their roots and culture.
"I am in London for the last 24 years, but I have not changed my customs and my trappings, especially the turban. We should take special care of our culture, traditions and language wherever we live," he said.