Panjab University wants Balwant Gargi stamp released on Baisakhi | punjab$regional-takes | Hindustan Times
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Panjab University wants Balwant Gargi stamp released on Baisakhi

The Panjab University has made the payment for 50,000 postage stamps on famous writer-dramatist Balwant Gargi and appealed to the Union ministry of communications to release the stamps on the university campus on Baisakhi.

punjab Updated: Apr 01, 2017 13:28 IST
Nirupama Dutt
Panjab University
Balwant Gargi(Representative Image)

The Panjab University has made the payment for 50,000 postage stamps on famous writer-dramatist Balwant Gargi and appealed to the Union ministry of communications to release the stamps on the university campus on Baisakhi.

The other eminent writers being honoured over a 100 years after their birth are Krishan Chander, Bhisham Sahni, Shrilal Shukla and KV Puttappa.

PU vice-chancellor (V-C) Arun Grover, who had worked hard to follow up the request for a postal stamp on Gargi during the dramatist’s birth-centenary celebrations last year, told HT, “Although the request for Chander and Sahni had come from other quarters, yet we can proudly own them too for three of the five writers have a close bond with Panjab University”. While Sahni studied at Government College, Lahore, and later obtained his doctorate from PU at Chandigarh, Gargi and Chander studied in FC College at Lahore. Interestingly, all three were Punjabis whose talent blossomed with the freedom struggle and they wrote in the three Indian languages popular in the region: Gargi in Punjabi, Chander in Urdu and Sahni in Hindi.

Gargi was also the founder head of the department of Indian theatre and played a significant role in promoting modern theatre in the region and his students include Anupam and Kirron Kher, Rani Balbir Kaur, Satish Kaushik, Poonam Dhillon, Gurcharan Channi, Kamal Tewari, Amrik Gill, Anita Kanwar and many others.

Hailing this honour, Gargi’s student of the first batch, Rani Balbir Kaur, says: “It is a befitting tribute and I say it not just because he was my mentor but because of his immense contribution and the unique credit of being honoured with both the Sahitya Akademi and Sangeet Natak Akademi awards.”

Gulzar Sandhu, chairperson of the Chandigarh Sahitya Akademi said, “Gargi is among very few Punjabi writers to receive this honour. Two others were Nanak Singh and Gurbaksh Singh Preetlari.”

WILL SEEK STAMP ON AMRITA TOO: V-C

V-C Grover, who pitched hard for this honour to Gargi, taking help from all he could, including the Khers, is not resting on his laurels.

“I will now be pressing for a postage stamp in memory of celebrated Punjabi poet Amrita Pritam whose birth centenary year is 2019,” he said.

The hostel number 9 in the university is also named after this grand dame of Punjabi letters. With Gulzar heading the Tagore chair, the university is in tune with the best of the literati.

Grover adds, “We look forward to the release of the stamps here, if not on Baisakhi then any other day the ministry of communications decides upon.”