Shanghai is the most important city of China and perhaps the most modern. It is a city that is almost timeless and mirrors China in all aspects. But not many know that there is an Indian connection with Shanghai. In reality it is a connection of the warlike Sikhs with Shanghai.
The British had got special rights in China after the defeat of the Chinese in the Opium wars (1842). They also controlled the city of Shanghai. At end of the 18th century the British brought in the war like Sikhs as policemen in Shanghai. A visit to the Shanghai
The Sikhs from all account made a good impression in Shanghai and they continued to hold sway in the city till the advent of the Japanese. After that many came back to India and some settled down in china. At that time the Sikhs in their spare time turned to money lending and charged an exorbitant rate of interest.
The Sikhs also constructed a Gurudwara in Shanghai and records show the Gurudwara was in existence till the forties of the last century, but I am not sure it is in existence now. The Sikhs as policemen rarely carried arms as they inspired fear and awe among the Chinese with their beards and turbans. This is one aspect of the police force in Shanghai that is not well documented. Many Sikhs also married Chinese girls and perhaps their generation may still be in Shanghai.
India and China have along history together and the connection of the Sikhs with the Shanghai Police is one of them In case any resident from Shanghai reads this, it will be my pleasure to hear from him.