kerala map

What Makes Kerala Distinctive? (Reformatted ) -by Joseph Thomas

  Preface Born in Peshawar, and brought up in North India, I had seen very few South Indians during my childhood. And the only Christians we saw were either Anglo-Indians or teachers in the elite schools. All this changed, when I joined the NDA, in Jan 1958. I met Thomas, and I got to know all that I know on …

kerala map

What Makes Kerala Distinctive? -by Joseph Thomas

  Preface Born in Peshawar, and brought up in North India, I had seen very few South Indians during my childhood. And the only Christians we saw were either Anglo-Indians or teachers in the elite schools. All this changed, when I joined the NDA, in Jan 1958. I met Thomas, and I got to know all that I know on …

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WAS Lt Gen A.A.K. NIAZI A TIGER OR A JACKAL???

  Vicissitudes in the life of Lt Gen AAK Niazi It is not uncommon for fortunes to fluctuate in life. But in the case of Lt Gen Amir Abdullah Khan Niazi, the amplitude of the swing was phenomenally large. He joined the army as a Y-cadet; earned an emergency commission at the somewhat late age of 27 and yet, rose to an exalted rank. At the …

featured other side of line

ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE RADCLIFFE LINE

  My Mother-tongue: Shahpuri Punjabi Before our independence in 1947, the undivided Punjab was at least eight times larger than the present day Indian state of that name. A large chunk went to Pakistan, and what was left was divided into three states, Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh. In 1911, the state was so noteworthy that when Gurudev Tagore wrote an immortal song, …

THE CHENNAI FLOODS OF 2015 – HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF by Joseph Thomas

 Editor’s Note I have already said many things about my NDA course-mate, Joseph Thomas. One can write a book on his academic achievements. He entered the Academy as the topper and retained that place all through the six terms. Later, he became a Test Pilot, trained in the USA many decades ago. He has logged more than 6000 flying hours. And …

intriguing picture

PICTURES IN SEARCH OF SUITABLE CAPTIONS

Dear Friend, Recently, I received a picture from a friend, which compelled me peer at it for quite a while. I then used the ‘picture manager’ to focus my attention on a tiny portion, then looked at half of the photograph, before getting back to the entire picture. I am sharing the results, since it tells a poignant tale. I want you …

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A TREASURE TROVE IN KASAULI

A brief note from the editor A Caravan Many months ago, perhaps in January 2015, Ashwani came to me and told me about a dysfunctional tower clock in a church in Kasauli. He told me that no one is willing to repair it, even as far as Delhi. It emerged that it was installed in 1884, and is a pendulum controlled mechanical …

bhs ED 15

VIDYA VICHAARI TAN PAROPKARI

The 2nd of September is a date etched in the psyche of our family. On this day, in 1926, our saintly ancestor, Bhai Hira Singh ji, breathed his last. Tomes have been written about his life and work. He became famous as a ‘Ragi’ ( a singer of the guru’s hymns). However, what is not so well known, is that …

Clock Tower

IN KASAULI, THE CHURCH CLOCK IS TICKING AGAIN!

The picture you see above shows the tower of a church in Kasauli (Shimla Hills). An elegant clock is mounted at its top, which has an attractive antiquated dial. The only thing curious about this grandfather timer is that, until about three weeks ago, neither its hour nor the minute hand had moved for as long as anyone can remember in …

dredger featured

SEQUEL TO ‘FLOOD CONTROL IN THE VALE OF KASHMIR’ by Joseph Thomas

Editor’s Note. My friend, Joseph Thomas, is an intense human being. When he feels strongly about something, he is a man possessed. Last year, when Srinagar valley was inundated by the Jhelum waters, he said that this disaster was unnecessary. Having been posted in J&K in 1962-64, having flown over the valley and done aerial survey, he knows the terrain …