Amar Singh Chamkila And His Wife, Amarjot's Journey In The Music World, Assassination And Legacy

Here, we have talked a bit about Amar Singh Chamkila's prolific singing career and his brutal assassination along with his wife, Amarjot Kaur, on which Imtiaz Ali's film, 'Chamkila', is made, starring Diljit Dosanjh and Parineeti Chopra.


By Oindrila Muhuri Last Updated:


Amar Singh Chamkila And His Wife, Amarjot's Journey In The Music World, Assassination And Legacy

Amar Singh Chamkila was among the highest-paid singers in the Punjabi music industry. Along with his wife, Amarjot, the singer reached a huge platform that is still a source of inspiration for many aspiring young singers around the world. But the singer left the mortal planes very early, at the mere age of 27, leaving behind his legacy of melodious yet truthful songs forever.

Now, as Imtiaz Ali's upcoming film, Chamkila's trailer is out, here is the journey of Amar Singh Chamkila and Amarjot in the world of music. The Netflix original film features Diljit Dosanjh and Parineeti Chopra in the lead roles of the singer and his wife, respectively. However, it is noteworthy that the murder mystery involving a certain turn of events, which led to the brutal assassination of Amar Singh Chamkila and his ladylove, Amarjot, still remains unsolved.

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Who was Amar Singh Chamkila?

Dhanni Ram, popularly known as Amar Singh Chamkila was born into a Ravidasia Sikh Chamar family in the village of Dugri near Ludhiana, Punjab, India. In the initial years of his life, he had seen a fair share of struggles and taken up multiple kinds of jobs. For instance, he had also worked at a cloth mill in Ludhiana. However, he always had a natural aptitude and love for music. It was the first time in 1978 when the 18-year-old Chamkila approached Surinder Shinda, and the latter soon understood the former's talent. Afterwards, Chamkila played alongside many Punjabi folk artists, including Surinder Shinda, K. Deep, Mohammad Sadiq and others.

Amar Singh Chamkila's initial collaborations in the music industry

Chamkila also wrote several songs for Surinder Shinda. But very soon, Chamkila understood the need for a solo career and the kind of songs the Punjabi audiences were dying to hear. He then first partnered with a female vocalist named Surinder Sonia. Together, Chamkila and Sonia recorded eight songs and also released the album, Takue Te Takua in 1980. Undoubtedly, Chamkila's self-written lyrics became a hit across Punjab. However, following this, Chamkila felt being underpaid by Sonia's manager (her husband) and went on to form his own band. Finally, he found his ladylove, Amarjot Kaur, who later went on to become Chamkila's permanent singing partner and also his second wife.

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When things started taking a negative turn against Amar Singh Chamkila's songs

The couple's appeal through his songs pointed mainly towards the commentaries on extramarital affairs, alcohol and drug use. Thus, it started causing problems for one section of the audience, who strongly criticised the songs, creating an uproar against Chamkila and Amarjot. However, due to his songs, Amar Singh Chamkila had started gaining international stardom among Punjabis abroad. Around this time, Chamkila was also rumoured to be receiving more bookings than his contemporaries, which probably was one of the real reasons behind his untimely death.

When Amar Singh Chamkila and his wife, Amarjot were brutally assassinated

It was on March 8, 1988, when Amar Singh Chamkila and his wife, Amarjot had arrived in Mehsampur, Punjab, to perform, and the brutal assassination of the couple took place. It was approximately 2 pm in the night when they were gunned down as they exited their vehicle by a gang of unidentified motorcyclists. The incident had also wounded other members of the entourage. However, the case remains still unsolved and many reports claim that this was done by Sikh militants.

Amar Singh Chamkila's untimely death impacted his kids

For the uninitiated, Chamkila had two daughters, Amandeep Kaur and Kamaldeep Kaur, from his first wife, Gurmail Kaur, while he had a son named Jaiman Chamkila from his second wife, Amarjot Kaur. In an interview with the Times of India, Amandeep Kaur also recalled how life after her father's death was extremely difficult. Moreover, she said she had hazy memories of the year when Chamkila had died since she was just four years old then. However, Amandeep mentioned that post Chamkila's death, she also had to take care of her mother, Gurmail who was not keeping well after her father's death.

On the other hand, in the same conversation, Jaiman Chamkila mentioned that since his parents were mostly busy with shows, they would leave them at his maternal grandparents’ place in Faridkot, Punjab. As he was just a few years old at that time, the only memory he has of his parents is that they would take him to various places in Punjab to spend quality time. He shared:

"I have a faint memory of that dreadful day when my parents were killed, and I recall that their bodies were kept in a room next to the drawing room. I was too young to understand what a tragedy had befallen. My maternal grandparents, Gucharan Singh, who was a drama inspector, and Rajwans Kaur, raised me. In 1996, my grandfather died, so my grandmother brought me from Faridkot to Ludhiana before she died in 2012."

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Amar Singh Chamkila's son, Jaiman once hinted that 'jealousy' was one of the reasons behind his father's untimely death

Chamkila’s son, Jaiman then talked about the things which he heard from his family members after his father's untimely demise. Jaiman mentioned that Chamkila would receive threatening letters, and the situation was bad at that time. But the doting son also mentioned that since Chamkila wrote songs based on societal issues, people love his songs even now. In Jaiman's words:

“There were artists at that time who would feel jealous that father came 15 years after them, still, none can sing like him and they cannot write like him. He was told that if he worked for one and a half years outside, he would survive. He was planning to go to the US for seven to eight months after visiting England (where he was scheduled to go on March 24), but he was killed on March 8."

Amar Singh Chamkila's legacy

Some of the hit songs by Amar Singh Chamkila were Pehle Lalkare Naal, Baba Tera Nankana, Talwar Main Kalgidhar Di, and many others. His fans and followers still today believes his songs to be a truthful commentary on Punjabi culture and society. Apart from Imtiaz Ali's upcoming film, a 2018 Indian mockumentary film based on Chamkila's life, Mehsampur, directed by Kabir Singh Chowdhry and produced by Akbar Pains, was made. And there are many more other legacies in his name.

To watch the trailer of Imtiaz Ali's film, click here.

Well, we are astounded to know about Amar Singh Chamkila and his wife, Amarjot's journey of reaching great heights within a short span of their career. What about you? Let us know!

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