Pash Wiki, Age, Death, Wife, Children, Family & More


Avtar Singh Sandhu (1950-1988), popularly known by his pen name ‘Pash,’ was an Indian poet in Punjabi Literature. He was one of the major poets of the Nexalite Movement in the 1970s. Pash was famous for his volumes of poetry like ‘Loh Katha’ (Iron Tale), ‘Udadian Bazan Magar’ (Following The Flying Hawks), ‘Saddey Sameyaan Vich’ (In Our Times), and ‘Khilre Hoye Warke.’ Pash was assassinated by the Khalistani terrorists at the age of 37 on 23 March 1988 in his village Talwandi Salem, District Jalandhar, Punjab, India.


Pash was born as Avtar Singh Sandhu on Saturday, 9 September 1950 (age 37 years; at the time of death) in Talwandi Salem village in Nakodar, Jalandhar District, Punjab, India. His zodiac sign is Virgo. At the age of 6, Pash joined a government school in the nearby Khiwa village. He passed his midterm examination in 1964. Pash enrolled for a vocational diploma at a Technical School in Kapurthala, Punjab. He dropped out of the vocational diploma and got admission to a high school in Jalandhar to pursue his matriculation.


Pash belonged to a Jatt-Sikh family.

Parents & Siblings

Pash’s father, Sohan Singh Sandhu, was a soldier in the Indian Army who had contributed his services in the War of Independence. Pash’s father was a poetry lover. Pash had 2 sisters, Pammy, and Rajinder, and 2 brothers, Ajit, and Sucha.

Wife & Children

Pash got married to Rajwinder Kaur Sandhu in 1978. She is a nurse and is settled in California, The United States of America. In January 1981, the couple was blessed with a daughter, Winkle Sandhu. [1]The Tribune Winkle Sandhu is an elementary school teacher in California, The United States of America.

Pash with his daughter, Winkle Sandhu

Pash with his daughter, Winkle Sandhu

Pash's daughter, Winkle Sandhu, with her mother, Rajwinder Kaur (right)

Pash’s daughter, Winkle Sandhu, with her mother, Rajwinder Kaur (right)



Pash published his first book, ‘Loh-Katha’ (Iron Tale), in 1970. The book emphasises revolt and Pash’s desire to have a kingdom like Dushyanta (a king in Hindu literature).

Pash's first book 'Loh Katha' (Iron Tale)

Pash’s first book ‘Loh Katha’ (Iron Tale)

In 1974, Pash’s second book titled ‘Uddade Bazan Magar’ (Following The Flying Hawks) was released. He wrote this book when he was in jail, and he talked about Naxalite Movement in the book.

Pash's second book, 'Uddade Bazan Magar' (Following The Flying Hawks)

Pash’s second book, ‘Uddade Bazan Magar’ (Following The Flying Hawks)

In 1978, Pash’s last book, ‘Saadey Samiyan Vich’ (In Our Times), was released. This book was a different project as it reflected his thoughts along with proven facts.

Pash's third book, 'Saadey Samiyan Vich' (In Our Times)

Pash’s third book, ‘Saadey Samiyan Vich’ (In Our Times)

Pash’s most influential poem ‘Sab Ton Khatarnak’ (The Most Dangerous) reflects the unjust and suppressive environment of his times. Pash recited this poem for the first time at the Martyrs Day Memorial Function organised by the Indian Workers Association Great Britain at Summerfield Community Centre in Smethwick, England, on 5 April 1987.

Pash's poem 'Sab Ton Khatarnak' (The Most Dangerous)

Pash’s poem ‘Sab Ton Khatarnak’ (The Most Dangerous)

Pash’s book ‘Khilre Hoye Varkey’ was published in 1989, after his death by Punjabi writer Amarjit Chandan.

Pash's writing in 'Khilre Hoye Varkey' (Scattered Pages)

Pash’s writing in ‘Khilre Hoye Varkey’ (Scattered Pages)



On 10 May 1970, Pash was sent to jail for allegedly killing the owner of a Brick-Kiln in Nakodar. Apparently, he knew the murderers which is why he was arrested. Pash was released from prison after more than a year. In 1972, Pash published a magazine, ‘Siarh.’ Pash was taken into custody for breaching the peace in the state and for promoting hatred and violence through his magazine.


On 23 March 1988, Pash was assassinated by the Khalistani terrorists in his native village Talwandi Salem in Nakodar, District Jalandhar, Punjab. Pash was a bold critic of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, which caused Pash to receive death threats. To save himself from any attack, Pash moved to the U.S. in 1986 on a tourist visa to her younger sister who had migrated there after marriage. To renew his tourist visa, Pash had to come back to India and apply for the renewal from a different country’s embassy. Pash went to take a bath on a tubewell in his village with his friend Hans Raj, where they both were shot down by the terrorists. A day before he was supposed to travel to Delhi in order to take a flight to Brazil to get his tourist visa to travel back to the U.S., Pash was killed. [2]The Print

The tubewell where Pash was assassinated

The tubewell where Pash was assassinated


  • In 1984, Khalistani terrorists made a list of four people to be killed near Pash’s village, Talwandi Salem. Pash’s name was on the top of that list.
  • In 1985, the Punjabi Sahitya Academy sanctioned a grant as a literary award to Pash.
  • The pen name ‘Pash’ was derived from the Russian writer Maxim Gorky’s novel ‘The Mother.’ Maxim Gorky was a huge influence in Pash’s life.
  • Pash had 10 acres of cultivated as well as barren land in possession as his grandfather was a wealthy landlord of the village. However, Pash was never interested in farming, and he always wanted to write and speak about his ideologies.
  • Pash was a man of ‘Left-wing’ views (ideologies in support of social equality).
  • In 2005, Pash’s famous poem ‘Sab Ton Khatarnaak’ was included in the NCERT’s Hindi Text Book for class 11. The addition to the text was later condemned by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s (RSS) ideologue Dinanath Batra who requested the removal of the poem from the book. However, the director of the NCERT, Hrushikesh Senapaty, declined the request and made a statement to keep the poem as part of the curriculum. [3]The Indian Express
  • Pash grew up amidst the Naxalite Movement (a movement of Maoist political sentiment and ideology). Therefore, the majority of Pash’s writing was influenced by the Punjab’s Naxalite Movement.
  • After Pash’s death, Pash Memorial International Trust was formed, which is located in PO Box 3215. kamloops, BC, Canada, V2C 6B8.
  • Pash worked at the Border Security Force in Jalandhar for a little while to earn a livelihood, but he left the job soon after.
  • In 1985, Pash was awarded a fellowship at the Punjabi Academy.
  • Translations of Pash’s work are available in many languages like Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Nepali, and English.
  • Pash was a close friends with Punjabi poet and writer Surjit Patar.
  • In 2021, the natives of the village Talwandi Salem celebrated the birth anniversary of Pash at the tubewell, where he and his friend Hans Raj were shot dead. [4]The Tribune
  • Pash’s verse ‘Main Hun Vida Hunda Haan’ was written right before he was killed on 23 March 1988.
  • Pash was deeply influenced by the Marxism ideology, and he justified the principle of social change through his writing.
  • The revolutionary poetry was started by Pash in Punjab.
  • Pash’s daughter, Winkle Sandhu, was just 7 years old when he was killed.
  • Pash’s all time favorite poets were Pablo Neruda and Bertolt Brecht, and he was also addressed as ‘Punjab’s Pablo Neruda.’
  • Pash was the founder of 1973- ‘Punjabi Sahit Te Sabhiachar Manch’ (Punjabi Literature and Culture Forum).
  • In 1986, Pash founded the U.S. magazine ‘Anti-47 Front’ which was a collective of writers opposing the Khalistani militants in Punjab.

    Pash's writing in the Anti-47 Front

    Pash’s writing in the Anti-47 Front

  • Pash edited a literary magazine, ‘Hemjyoti,’ during the period of 1974-1975.
  • In 1974, Pash wrote the biography of Milkha Singh, ‘Milkha Singh Athlete’ (The Flying Sikh 1974).

    Milkha Singh's biography written by Pash

    Milkha Singh’s biography written by Pash

  • In the late 90’s, Pash worked as a press correspondent for the magazine ‘Des Pardes.’
  • Pash’s entire work was published by Pash Memorial International Trust in ‘Sampooran Pash Kav’ (2000).
  • In 2013, Pash’s father, Sohan Singh Sandhu, compiled all of Pash’s work into a book titled ‘Pash Di Vartak- Talwandi Salem Nu Jaandi Sadak.’ This book is a collection of more than 180 poems by Pash.

    Pash's compilation of poems published by his father

    Pash’s compilation of poems published by his father

  • In memory of Pash and his friend Hans Raj, a memorial complex was constructed after their names in their native village.

    Complex built after Pash and Hans Raj's name in their native village

    Complex built after Pash and Hans Raj’s name in their native village

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