By the end of next month, it will be one year since my retirement from Indian Foreign Service. In the process of settling down, we readied our flat at the IFS Apartments at Gurgaon and also purchased and furnished a small flat at the Silver Residency Apartments ( near TV Tower ) in Jalandhar, my home town. We keep shuttling between Gurgaon and Jalandhar. Of late, I have decided to spend more time in Jalandhar as I find that it offers me more opportunities to engage myself in some positive activity.
I have appeared four times on the Jalandhar Doordarshan in its various programmes. It was satisfying. I could revive some of my old contacts. It has resulted in more exposure. One such contact is of Dr. K.C. Mahendru, Former Principal of the DAV College Jalandhar. I remained his student of Political Science at the same college. Now he runs a middle school - MLD Dayanand Public School with his wife Smt. Prem Kanta Mahendru, as their post retirement activity. They were kind enough to invite and host me as the Chief Guest at the Annual Day function of the School yesterday November 19. It was an honour for me as I take Dr. Mahendru, my Alma mater, in high esteem. I thought it will a good opportunity to pay my debt of gratitude to him and I accepted the invitation with pleasure. It was a new experience for me. I could interact with the children and see the visionary Mahendru couple at work. I found them totally involved. Their contribution to the cause of education is big and great. I wish them good health and further success. I did not have the requisite skill and experience to speak to small children. In my brief speech, I stressed the need of cleanliness to be inculcated among the children. It goes without saying that India is one of the dirtiest and filthy countries. We must act and rectify the position in this regard. I also spoke about the relevance of Dr. Mohd. Iqbals prayer : MERE ALLAH BURAI SE BACHANA MUJKO; NEK JO RAH HO US PE CHALANA MUJKO ( Oh Allah protect from the evil ways; Show me the path leading to the good).
Next week, I am invited by yet another famous school, Shiv Jyoti Public School, to be the Chief Guest at its Annual Day function. Hope that it will be a good exposure and give me an opportunity to speak to grown up children also as the School caters for senior higher secondary level.