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South Asian Heritage Month 2022

Authored by Nishah Malik
Published on 18th July, 2022 2 min read

South Asian Heritage Month 2022

A poster for South Asian Heritage Month.

This month marks the annual South Asian Heritage Month in the United Kingdom. The month, running from 18th July to 17th August, celebrates the heritage and history of South Asian countries such as India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives. 

Launched in 2019, the month aims to “Celebrate, Commemorate and Educate” people about South Asian history and culture, as well as creating awareness on the continued intertwined relationship between Britain and South Asian communities. 

Unlike other commemorative months, South Asian Heritage Months takes place over two months, this is because July and August contain some significant dates for South Asia. In particular, on the 18th July the Indian Independence Act of 1947 gained royal assent, 26th July marks Maldives Independence Day, 8th August marks Bhutan’s Independence Day, 14th August marks Pakistani Independence Day and 15th August marks Indian Independence Day. Also, the 17th August marks the date the Radcliffe line, which set out where the boundaries of India, West Pakistan and East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), was decided in 1947. 

2022 also marks two significant anniversaries in South Asia namely the 50th Anniversary of the expulsion of Uganda’s Asian minority and the 75th Anniversary of the partition of the Indian subcontinent. 

The 2022 theme for South Asian Heritage month is “Journey’s of Empire”, which will aim to explore the history of empires and the journey of individuals migrating to Britain. 

“This year’s theme ‘Journeys of Empire’ is marking the impact our communities who travelled across the world with no understanding of the language, culture and with minimal funds to start a new life.” - Tanisha Singla.

Alongside educating people about South Asian history, the month allows individuals of South Asian heritage to share their own stories and subsequently reclaim their history. Throughout the month many events and exhibitions will be held in order to uphold their ethos of “Celebrate, Commemorate and Educate”. 

Authored by Nishah Malik

Nishah Malik

Nishah Malik is Collections Editor at British Online Archives. Nishah gained a Masters in History from the University of Derby in 2020. Her research interests centre around South Asian culture and heritage, as well as the history and experiences of the South Asian diaspora. She also has a keen interest in women's history.

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The British Online Archives Notable Days diary is a platform intended to mark key dates and events throughout the year. The posts draw attention to historical events and figures, as well as recurring cultural traditions and international awareness days, in both religious and secular contexts.

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