Surjeet Kalsey is an outstanding South Asian Canadian writer, who came to Canada in 1974 with a background in broadcasting, as a News Anchor of “Pradeshik Samachar” Regional News for All India Radio Chandigarh. Surjeet writes both in Punjabi and English and is the author of 19 books of poetry, short stories, drama, and translations. She has also edited several books.
Surjeet Kalsey was given B.C.’s Prestigious Writer’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014 for her dedication as a writer to the Punjabi Literature, language and culture in Canada for the last 40 years in an Award Ceremony on 1st May 2014 at Centre Stage, New Surrey City Hall, as a part of Late Harjit Kaur Memorial Program of the Department of Asian Studies in the University of British Columbia.
As a social activist, Surjeet has worked intensively in the community to raise awareness about violence against women and children. Working many years with families who went through family violence, her writings especially short stories and drama reflect women’s issues. Her three-act play “Mehlin Wasdiyan Dhiyan” (Daughters Behind the Palace Doors) was the first play which established theatre for South Asian women in Canada in the late seventies to address the unspoken issue of violence against women in the South Asian Community in Canada.