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Golden memoirs of maternal grandfather
10/28/2020 12:09:40 AM

Sunil Vaid

My maternal grandfather (Sh N.L Sharma) was a gregarious, outspoken public figure, a devoted father and a grandfather. He had four daughters and I am eldest son of his second eldest daughter. He had ears that truly listened, arms that always held love that is never ending and heart made of gold. He was lovable, caring, patient and always taught me to make a good behaviour with elders. He was a great educationist and was indeed a great man with pure soul. He gave his everything to nurture his nears and dears and serve society at large. As a person, he was very kind, funloving, generous and a caring person.
Born in 1905 in a village near Samba in a mediocre family, he faced many hardships in his student days. After passing his early education in his native village, he completed his high school in Jammu. He used to shuttle 40kms daily from his village to Jammu on foot which was an arduous task. After completing his graduation from Prince of Wales College, Jammu (Now G.G.M Science College) he was appointed teacher in J & K Education department during Maharaja Regime. He attained his bachelor’s in Education BET (Now B.Ed) from Banaras Hindu University before independence. During his illustrious career, he devoted his heart and soul in teaching students. He was an embodiment of sincerity, honesty, dedication, discipline and authority. He served as Headmaster in various middle schools, high schools in different stations. He served in senior position in SRML high school and rose to the rank of Inspector of Schools, Jammu division. During his tenure, many new schools were opened in far flung areas and also many middle schools were upgraded to high schools.
His happiness was in his children and grandchildren. I have so many memories down the lane, most of my childhood days have been spent at my maternal grandfather’s place. After retirement he served as a consultant/Principal in Modern academy Jammu. He left the engagement due to illness of my granny (Nani) who he looked after devotedly and sincerely. She passed away leaving him in trauma but the love with his children and grandchildren recovered him soon. When he was serving in modern Academy he used to go to the school from Gandhi nagar to Pir Mitha on foot in the morning to stay healthy. So many times he took me along during my childhood, I was very much impressed by the respect he earned in the school. As a kid I enjoyed the treatment i got from the staff and senior students of the school. The way of his handling the administrative matters of school, his behaviour with the staff and children and the way he taught the senior students really impressed me. His style of working, dedication and honesty has turned me in awe of him.
I recall discussing with him the current affairs, historical stories during rest time. He exposed me to great wonders of the world. He did not visit temples but was spiritual and religious. He remembered by heart shlokas of Ramayana and Bhagavad Gita. Apart from being my grandfather, he was my friend, philosopher, guide and above all Guru. He was very happy on my admission to Sainik School Nagrota. He often visited my school and used to bring toffees, biscuits and fruits.
His message for his grandchildren was “No work is big or small; don’t think how much money you can earn in beginning. We all start from zero and we can learn every job and gain heights in future. He began his career in education as a teacher and rose to heights in Department of education in J&K and occupied prominent positions in the department. He used to tell us that fragrance of Itr (scent) speaks of itself, the Itr seller need not speak of its virtues.
His daily routine was to get up early in the morning, go for a walk. He listened to the BBC News early in the morning. From the market he used to bring comics and fruits for us.
He was also fond of serving Mother Nature; he used to spend 2 hours in the evening in the kitchen garden involving all children including me.
It has been years since he has left but he is missed deeply. More and more to single out person who inspired me the most, I go back to him. His guidance encouraged me to whatever I have achieved in my life. I thank him for being a strong motivator and making moments spend with him unforgettable.
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