LAHORE - Wearing turban of Pakistani flag and white shalwar qameez, Mahindar Pall Singh aka Veer Ji Wednesday took oath along with 353 other members in a house of 371 lawmakers.

He is the second Sikh member of the provincial legislature since 1947 and perhaps the first youngest one who was elected on reserved seats for minorities so far.

Elected on PTI ticket, Veer Ji, 32, lives in Multan but his native city is Nankana Sahib, the birthplace of the founder of Sikh religion, Baba Guru Nanak.  It was Ramesh Singh Arora who made first entry in Punjab Assembly on PML-N ticket in 2013 after the independence.

Falling of Arora’s name on 5th position on the PML-N’s list of candidates for minorities submitted with the Election Commission of Pakistan deprived him this time to be an MPA.

However, Mahindar successfully secured the seat as his name was placed on third position in the PTI’s list.

Eight seats are fixed for minorities in Punjab Assembly, PTI and PML-N secured four each.  The other seven candidates belong to Christian community and they included Harron Imran Gill, Ijaz Masih and Peter Gill of PTI and Khalil Tahir Sindhu, Joyoc Ruflin Julius and Munir Masih Khokhar of PML-N.

A passionate cricket all-rounder who successfully represented Punjab University cricket team during 2008-2010, Mahindar had a long association with the PTI and Imran Khan and perhaps it was mainly the game which made him the fan of great cricketer and prime minister-in-waiting Imran Khan.

Describing his 10-year long association with PTI as its active member and two decades-long with Khan, Mahindar said: “I was an active member of ISF [Insaf Students Federation] in Punjab University during my studies in IBA Department but Imran was my childhood hero. I used to watch his cricket matches on YouTube since long.”

Mahindar, however, now is an ambitious politician. He served as Multan tehsil and district general secretary and later southern Punjab president of PTI minority wing. Now, he is senior vice-president of Punjab. He says he is proud to be a Sikh, Punjabi and Pakistani. “Around 25,000 Sikhs live in Pakistan but I’m in Punjab Assembly to represent all the minorities.

“I want to serve in field of girls’ education in southern Punjab districts. Initiation of health and education-related programmes for children of Hindu and Christian communities will be my top priority.”

Veer Ji claimed the PTI government will take revolutionarily steps in next five years to turn Pakistan into a peaceful and developed country for the people of all religions.