Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, June 14
A senior Punjab bureaucrat was pleasantly surprised on being applauded by none other than Amitabh Bachchan for his book on trees in historic Sikh shrines.
Amitabh Bachchan, who posts a blog everyday, not only appreciated a new-look nation capital in his this morning’s blog, but also made laudatory references to “Tryst with Trees”, a coffee table book by Damanbir Singh Jaspal, a 1976-batch Punjab cadre IAS.
Amitabh Bachchan wrote: “And then on the plane went about reading some of the magazines that were put forward and came across some very interesting facts on Sikh gurdwaras, their place of worship. A book recently released by an eminent author DS Jaspal mentions that each prominent gurdwara was built around the importance of a tree within its premise.”
“The name, too, of the gurdwara at times bearing mention of the tree that was housed within it. The Amb gurdwara has a mango tree within, the Imli gurdwara and so on… the tree being the place where the guru’s rested on their tours or during the various battles they fought or when they held their prayer meetings.”
“The tree then became sacred and when the place of worship was constructed, that particular tree remained an integral part of the design! Fascinating!! Not just the religiosity of the moment, but I wonder if it was a symbolic gesture on part of those who built these gurdwaras and conducted prayers much after the passing away of the gurus. It was an indication on the environment and how deeply maybe they thought of this factor then!! I wonder!!” wrote Amitabh Bachchan.
Telephone calls from his friends all over the country this morning informed Damanbir Singh Jaspal about the blog by Big B.
A latest issue of an English weekly from Delhi carried a story about “Tryst with Trees” yesterday. Incidentally, this book was highlighted by The Tribune some months back when it was formally launched by Union Minister of State for External Affairs Perneet Kaur in New York.
Damabir also organised an exhibition in New York of pictures of some of the historic trees that he has mentioned in his voluminous Coffee Table book. Damanbir, who along with his batch mate and current Secretary in the Union Ministry of Overseas Indians A Didar Singh, will be superannuating by the end of year.
While A Didar Singh completes the age of 60 in October, Damanbir Singh Jaspal superannuates in December. Also superannuating this October will be 1975-batch Punjab IAS Mukul Joshi who is currently Union Secretary for Pharmaceuticals.
Source Link: http://www.tribuneindia.com
Also visit the Book’s Website: http://www.trystwithtrees.com/about.php