Sikh family at heart of Rowling’s Pagford

Celebrated author JK Rowling, whose latest book has a Sikh family at the heart of a fictional village in south-west England called Pagford, says she did a "vast amount of research" on Sikhism and it showed in the book titled “The Casual Vacancy.”

Answering queries from journalists and others at a book-reading event at the Southbank Centre here last night, Rowling, 47, said that when she was in her mid-twenties she knew a Sikh woman who sparked her interest in the Sikh religion. It remained with her all along, so the only non-white family in the book "had to be Sikhs", she said.

Rowling said she was particularly struck by the egalitarian principles of the religion and wove in a Sikh family as one of the central features of the book.

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