As a symbol of the struggle for human rights, peace and freedom of expression, Tara Singh Hayer has paid an enormous personal price for his beliefs. Aware that discrimination thrives on ignorance, Mr. Hayer has worked tirelessly to promote understanding between ethnic and cultural groups.
After emigrating to Canada in 1970, he worked as a miner, teacher, truck-driver and a manager of a trucking firm before becoming a full time journalist. In 1978, he established the community newspaper, The Indo-Canadian Times and has built it into the leading Punjabi-language newspaper in North America.
In August, 1988, he survived an attempt on his life that left him in a wheelchair. Despite this attack, Mr. Hayer has never wavered in his commitment to tolerance, peace and understanding between cultural communities.
In 1992, he was honoured with the Commemorative Medal for the 125th. Anniversary of Canada and a Certificate of Appreciation from the R.C.M.P. Among his other awards, Mr. Hayer has received the Journalist Award by the Municipality of Surrey for courageous and outstanding contribution to Punjabi Journalism in Canada. He has also received the International Award of Distinction for Journalism by the International Association of Punjabi Authors and Artists.
Tara Singh Hayer has continued, even when faced with violence, to be a voice of moderation and reason.