“SHUHUL TAAPH” IV, a three day mega cultural event (February, 15, To 17, 2013) went off to a flying start from the day one. The KECSS LAL DED Complex where the three day event was being held wore a festive look . The stage in the auditorium had the added attraction of having a replica of KISHTI (Kashmiri Boat), full, with flowers of different colours and a huge Paper Machie “SAMAVAR”. CCTV Screens kept at several places in the auditorium helped the audience to view the proceedings comfortably and with ease.
The outside premises was decorated with beautiful shamiana and carpets with a row of stalls put up by the Kashmiri craftsmen selling Kashmiri embroidered shawls, Silk Sarees , Wood carving and paper machie products etc. The Members of the KECSS and invitees after getting themselves registered were being offered traditional KHEWA with KULCHA from the Kashmiri Bakery. KECSS President Prof. B B Dhar and his executive members were ensuring that the event becomes a grand success and leaving nothing to chance.
The formal function began in the afternoon of February, 15, 2013, with the arrival of Chief Guest Dr. Farooq Abdullah, Hon’ble Union Minister for New & Renewable Energy, Govt. Of India. He was received by the President of KECSS Prof. B B Dhar, who introduced him to his executive members. The Chief guest was offered traditional Kashmiri “Khewa”, at SAMAVAR --- a Kashmir Caucasian Centre at Lalded Complex..
The Chief Guest formally opened the PAINTING Exhibition by cutting the traditional ribbon. He went around the exhibition and viewed the paintings, with interest , of old veterans as well as the budding artists. He made enquiries which were ably replied by noted Painter Sh. VEER Munshi the main Organiser of the exhibition.
The Chief Guest also went around the Photo Art Gallery which had been inaugurated by the Delhi Chief Minister, Smt. Sheila Dikshit, in, 2011. The photographs on display showed the old Srinagar city with some photographs of the famous temples and shrines, wedding and Namaz offering people. Some of the photographs dated back to more than 100 years. The Chief guest recognized some of the faces. Old utensils and items of daily use were also on display. Their use was explained by Mrs. Anjili Kaul. This followed the main function in the auditorium, where the Chief Guest was conducted and was received by a standing ovation. Prof. B B Dhar, introduced the Chief Guest Dr. Farooq Abdullah, Union Minister for New & Renewal Energy, Govt. of India and Guest of Honour Dr. Upinder Dhar, Vice Chancellor JK LakshmiPath, University, Jaipur, to the audience.
Prof. B B Dhar, in his welcome address , spoke about the activities of KECSS. He told the audience that the main objective of the KECSS was to preserve and sustain the Kashmiri Art, Language, Culture and Heritage. Giving a brief resume of the KECSS, Prof. Dhar said that it was constituted in 1967 and the members are from all walks of life ---- Poets, Authors, Artists ( Radio & Stage ), Journalists, Academicians, Scientists, irrespective of cast, creed and religion. We organize seminars on various topics pertaining to Kashmir, Award functions to felicitate who have achieved national or global fame in their respective field of activity. Besides we organize Stage performances to encourage and offer platform to budding artists from the state, Book releases of authors from the state. All these keep the KASHMIRIYAT alive. KECSS maintains a Library which has more than 6000 books and some old rare manuscripts. We also run a day care school.
The inaugural function started by lighting the traditional Lamp by the Chief Guest and others on the dias.
The highlight of the programme was the presentation of KECSS Awards for 2012. Dr. Abdullah, presented this year’s different awards to the following :-
KECSS AWARD - 2012
1. Prof. P K KAW --------- Science & Technology
2. Prof. ( Dr. ) SHAKTI BHAN KHANNA -- Medical Sciences
3. Dr. SHASHI SHEKHAR TOSHKHANI -- Literature
KECSS ACHIEVERS AWARD -2012
1. Sh. BHARAT BUSHAN PANDIT ----- Resource Management and Administration
2. Sh. BHARAT WAKHLU ------------ Management & Leadership
KECSS LIFETIME AWARDS
1. Smt. KISHORI KAUL -------- Art & Painting
2. Sh. P N KACHRU -------------- Arts & Painting
3. Prof. OMKAR N KOUL ------- Linguistics
4. Sh. T N DHAR “Kundan” --- Literature
5. Sqn.Ldr ( retd ) B L SADHU - Preservation of Kashmiriyat
KECSS FELICITATION AWARD 2012.
1. Sh. L C KAUL --------- Education & Literature
2. Sh. MAHARAJ KRISHEN RAINA --Kashmiri Language & Literature
KECSS AWARD OF HONOUR
1. Dr. S N KAUL ------- Healthcare & well being of the Community
2. Sh. R K MATOO ------ Preservation of Kashmiriyat in South India
3. Dr. S N GANJU ------- Preservation of True Kashmiriyat in U K.
4. Sh. CHAMAN LAL GADOO ------ Preservation of Kashmiri Heritage
KECSS CONTEMPORARY ARTISTS AWARD
1. Sh. SHABIR HUSSAIN SANTOSH------ Contribution in Visual Arts
2. Sh. NEERAJ BAKSHI -------- Contribution in Visual Arts.
At this occasion Dr. Abdullah, also gave away two awards of the year 2011, to the following who could not be present last year:-
1. Dr. G N QAZI ------ Vice Chancellor, Jamia Hamdard University, New Delhi, KECSS, Achievers Award -2011
2. Sh. RAJINDER TIku ------- Sculpture, Jammu ( J&K ) --- KECSS , Felicitation Award -2011.
The award function was followed by release of books by the Chief Guest. The books released were “Ramanaya in Kashmiri’ by Sh. Sarwanand Kaul “Premi”and Arjun Dev Majboor and two books on Late Sh. Ved Lal Kaul ----- 1. SUBAH SUBAH BEKARAR and 2. GULGASHT.
The Chief Guest, Guest of Honour, President KECSS, Hony. Chief Editor, Dr. Rajinder Tikoo, released the special edition of KECSS Newsletter, “SHUHUL TAAPH” IV.
Dr. Farooq Abdullah, delivering his inaugural address, Congratulated and lauded the efforts of KECSS for the preservation and promotion of Kashmiri Culture, Arts, Language and Heritage. Recalling the age old traditions of Kashmir, he told the audience that it is a great event we are meeting here because we interact with each other. He told the younger audience that with race for more and more they should not forget their elders. Life has become show, but let us not forget our traditions. The Union Minister asserted that all efforts are afoot to restore the glory of Kashmir in its original colours. Dr. Abdullah cautioned that the situation in Kashmir needs careful handling as unstable Pakistan and gradual with drawl of NATO forces in Afghanistan is a cause of concern for the Government of India. Dr. Abdullah, indirectly pointing to the terrorism, that a storm had lashed the calm of the valley and had tried to tear the fabric of brotherhood. But it did not last long and by now has considerably subsided.
Continuing his speech while lauding the efforts of KECSS , he suggested that attention should be given to provide medical facilities to the people. Dr. Abdullah suggested that KECSS must be running a huge bill for the Electricity. KECSS can approach his ministry for the technical know how of the solar energy which will considerably bring down the cost incurred on the electricity.
Dr. Upinder Dhar, the Guest of Honour , who presided over the function, congratulated the KECSS in its efforts to preserve and sustain the Kashmiri Art, culture , Language and Heritage. He dwelt at length with the different festivals which used to be observed in the valley and stressed the need that the community should not forget these festivals and should observe them in the traditional way. These festivals which we have inherited from our ancestors should be respected.
In the evening the noted singers Shri. Rohit Dass, Sh. Gautam Sanjay Raina and Sh. Dileep Langoo, entertained the audience with their melodious and scintillating songs. The finale was brought by the presentation of folk dances by the young artists from the state conducted and directed by noted stage artist who had come from Jammu with a band of young budding artists. All along the knowledgeable audience applauded the singers and artists.
The second day of “SHUHUL TAAPH” IV, began with the screening of the film directed and produced by Sh. Rajesh Jalla. The film depicts the story of a family whose sole bread earner has donned the cap of militancy leaving his young wife and three small children to fend for themselves. The film has bagged several national and international awards and has been screened at several film festivals.
The screening of the film was followed by discussion on the works of Late. Padma Shri. Moti Lal Saqi, the eminent, poet, author, dramatist, researcher, authority on Rishi cult of the valley. The session was chaired by eminent linguist Prof. Omkar N Kaul. Shri. Ravinder Ravi, read a detailed paper on “Saqi in Kashmir”, which gives insights to many facts of Late Saqi’s life. The participants read papers, made speeches and recited couplets from his poems. Those who took part in the interaction included Sh. T N Dhar “Kundan”, Prof. Hari Kishen, Sh. Rajinder Premi, Sh. Vijay Saqi, Sh. Moti Lal Naaz, and Sh. V K Wattal, to name a few. Prof. Kaul in his concluding remarks lauded the works of Late Sh. Saqi. He also praised the efforts of Prof. B B Dhar and his executive members, for organizing such seminars on the works of eminent people like Late Sh. Saqi.
The post Lunch saw the well known writers of fiction and nonfiction and short story reading their recent compositions before the audience. They included Shri. Nirdhan Maharaj, Dr. R K Kaul and Prof. Omkar N Kaul. The audience heard them with rapt attention. The short story session was followed by Kashmiri Mushiara. Those who recited their compositions included Sh. Vijay Saqi, Sh. Moti Lal Naaz, Sh. Bal Kishan “Sanyasi”, Sh. Fayaz Dilbar, Ms. Sunita Raina Pandit, Ms. Sunita Raina and Sh. Ravinder Ravi. The well known poets from the valley brought down the house by their serious and comic recitations. The audience went into peals of laughter and enjoyed every bit of it.
The audience were a witness to the cultural programme presented by the young artists from the state. The young artists with their golden voices and accompanying lilting music made the evening heady. The audience appreciated every bit by thunderous applause after each performance. The audience were all praise for the Music Director Sh. Kishan Langoo.
The third and the final day of the mega cultural event began with an introspection on --- Pt. Shiban Ji Raina. Pt. Shiban Ji Raina, the former Director General Cement Research, Govt. Of India, was a very active Social worker. He was associated with a number of Community Social organizations . He was the Executive Member of the KECSS for a number of years and Hony Chief Editor of the NEWSLETTER, published by the KECSS. The tone was set by the KECSS President, Prof. B B Dhar, who conveyed to the audience that his association with Pt. Raina dated back to 4 decades when he joined the Academic Staff of BHU University after returning from Canada and Pt. Raina was a student. Besides being brilliant in his studies, Prof. Dhar recalled that he was active on other fronts also. He was great source of inspiration and support to KECSS.
Shri. I K Kilam, lifelong school and college friend of Pt. Shiban Ji Raina, spoke at length about the human qualities of Late Shiban Ji, recalling some incidents , which touched the hearts of well wishers and friends of Late Raina.
Sh. A N Kaul Sahib, eminent journalist, talked at length the good humanly qualities of Pt. Shiban JI and reminded the audience about his famous satirical poem , “Batta Chain The chem. Khush Karan”. Dr. Rajinder Tikoo, Hony Chief Editor NEWSLETTER, “SHUHUL TAAPH” IV, recalled his association with Pt. Raina, when he was a Research student at Pusa Agricultural Institute. He told the audience about an incident which had left a deep mark on him ------ EXTEND YOUR HELPING HAND TO EVERY BODY. Dr. Ramesh Raina, who anchored the session, lauded the head and heart qualities of Pt. Raina. A soft spoken person with a smiling face he was endeared by one and all. He had only friends. Shri. Arun Shalia, Vice President, KECSS, described Pt. Raina , a good friend, guide who was always available for any help one needed. Shri. Rakesh Kaul, President, Kashmiri Samiti, Delhi, said that Pt. Raina was a silent worker and was always there to do good for the community.
Ms. Deepshalini, daughter, of Pt Shiban Ji Raina, spoke about the good fatherly qualities of her father. Continuing, she said that he had been a guide, mentor and philosopher to the family. This event was attended by the family members and relatives of Shiban Ji Raina, including his wife Mrs. Ratni Raina and grand children. KECSS is obliged to them for their presence. Others who spoke included the eminent author & writer Prof. Chaman Lal Sapru.
Prof. B B Dhar, President KECSS, spoke on the conclusion of the introspection, and conveyed to the audience that KECSS believes in doing things which have a small base and completing them rather than taking up big projects which with our limited infra structure cannot be completed. We suggest to well wishers to bring a big project and take the responsibility of completing it. It is no good to make promises which cannot be fulfilled. Continuing his speech, he told the audience KECSS provides platform for all the cultural activities. The recent example being the holding of Musical extravaganza “VAKH, VACHUN & VANVUN” where our budding artists in their pursuit , gave their performance before a knowledgeable audience. In the same way we hold seminars on our intellectuals who by their work have enhanced and enriched the cultural canvas of the state.
The post LUNCH session was in reality an intellectual interaction between the retired senior bureaucrat and author Shri. M K Kaw (IAS retd) and Sh. Bharat Wakhlu, corporate honcho. Shri. M K Kaw, read excerpts from his recently published book “AN OUTSIDER EVERYWHERE”. The interaction became quite interesting when audience asked Sh. Kaw, some personal questions besides pertaining to the book. Sh. Kaw was at ease while answering some personal questions. The audience enjoyed every minute of the interaction. The conduct and the introduction of the book by Sh. Bharat Wakhlu, was a kind of treat by itself.
The evening witnessed the cultural programme presented by Group artists from J&K. The star attraction was the presentation of the ballet by the young artists under the direction of noted Stage artist Sh. Kishan Langoo.
The cultural programme was followed by the felicitation of artists and presentation of mementoes to the office bearers and executive members of the KECSS who had rendered their valuable help and time in making the “SHUHUL TAAPH” IV, a grand success.
Shri. R K Kaul, General Secretary KECSS, thanked the audience for their participation and making the event a grand success. He proposed a vote of thanks and the mega event came to an end followed by a Kashmiri Dinner.
V K Wattal