Indians Abroad

Bhikhu Parekh

Famous As Political Thinker
Born On 1935
Born In Amalsad, Gujrat
Nationality British

Bhiku Parek is an eminent political theorist in Britain and an active member in the House of Lords. During his tenure, he has contributed immensely towards societal changes that were once a major cause of concern to Britain's culture in the early 70's. He has pioneered many concepts on multiculturalism, collective rights and responsibility and other socio-cultural issues that have influenced the governance in UK. Commonly addressed as Lord Bhiku, he has worked to bring about a noninterventionist and tolerant political view where people of different ethnicities could live in harmony. It was through his ideologies and his unrelenting dedication towards his work that he managed to bring a significant understanding of Indian culture on a global platform. During his lifetime, he has been conferred with a number of awards such as the Sir Isaiah Berlin Prize, Distinguished Global Thinker Award, Padma Bhushan, etc. by many international forums.

Early Life
Bhiku Parekh was born in a small hamlet known as Amalsad in the state of Gujarat, in the year 1935. He hailed from a middle class family, where his father was goldsmith. He enrolled into Mumbai University to earn his degree and masters before Bhiku went on to pursue his studies from London School of Economics. He completed his Ph.D. in the year 1966.

Before Bhiku Parekh earned himself a place in London and in Indian politics, he was a teacher who taught in universities. He started as a lecturer first at London School of Economics and then moved on to teach in the University of Glasgow before earning an extended duration at the University of Hull. During his academic career, Bhiku was interested in socio-political topics like political philosophy, history of politics, social theories, ancient and modern Indian politics, and various ideologies on ethnic relations. During his academic tenure in London, he also became the vice-chancellor the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. He also taught as a senior faculty in the Centre for the Study of Global Governance at the London School of Economics and at the University of Westminster. In the following years, Bhiku served as an active socialist and was closely associated with several organizations. He has been the vice-chancellor of the Gandhi foundation, a trustee of the Anne Frank Educational Trust and a member of the National Commission on Equal Opportunity. He has also been the author of many books expressing his political or philosophical standpoint like 'Rethinking Multiculturalism: Cultural Diversity and Political Theory', 'Gandhi', 'Colonialism, Tradition and Reform', 'Gandhi's Political Philosophy', 'Contemporary Political Thinkers', and 'Karl Marx's Theory of Ideology'.

Achievements and Awards
Lord Bhiku has earned fellowships in a number of well-known institutions such as University of Oxfords, Royal Society of Arts and the Academy of Learned Societies in the Social Sciences in 1999 and the British Academy. He has won a number of awards for his work, some of them being Sir Isaiah Berlin Prize (2003) by the Political Studies Association, UK, the Life Peer in 2000 which earned him the title as Baron Parekh and BBC's Special Lifetime Achievement Award for Asians in 1999. Bhiku has also earned a honorary doctorate from the University of Essex and in 2007, he received the Padma Bhushan from the Indian government.

1935: He was born in Amalsad in India.
1966: He earned his PH.D from London School of Economics.
1981-1984: Was elected as the vice-chancellor of Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda.
1999: The BBC Special Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to him.
2000: He received a life peer for the title Baron Parekh.
2007: He was awarded the Padma Bhushan.