Pride of Jammu

Rajeshwar Singh ‘Raju’
If one wants to know what dedication and devotion is all about then Narsingh Dev Jamwal, popularly known as N D Jamwal, a multifaceted personality of state is a role model. For the last so many years, he has been working to quench his thirst for art but is never satisfied.
To satisfy the same, he goes on innovating new things whether through literature, paintings or sculpture. It was only his mammoth contribution in different fields of art that he has been recently conferred upon with Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award in the Republic of India which in fact has been the honour for all associated with culture and literature of the state and Duggar Pradesh in particular.
N D Jamwal, a living legend is a house hold name for his immense contribution as a writer, painter, Sculptor, Dramatics and Social Worker. He was born on 28th February 1931 at village Bhalwal, District Jammu, did his matriculation in 1945 from Punjab University Lahore, B.A 1972 from J&K University and M.A and Pre Ph.D in 1991 from Jammu University.
He Joined J&K State Forces Ist J&K Infantry in1945 and took part in Indo-Pak war 1947 at Uri-Muzaffrabad under Brig. Rajinder Singh MVC and was awarded Kashmir Gen. Service Medal, Independence Medal and Poonch- Uri Clasp 1947. Later on he joined J&K Police in 1953 and retired as Dy. Supdt. of Police in 1986. He was awarded President’s Police Medal for meritorious service for 32 years, Police Special Duty Medal in 1965,Samar Sewa Medal 1965,Sangram Medal 1971,Pachhmi Star 1971 and 25th Independence Anniversary Medal 1972 in addition to several other honours. He was very good in sports as well and was an important member of Hockey & Volleyball teams. He was instrumental in bringing laurels to his teams with so many wins that fetched him many honours also.
If we focus on his journey as a writer then undoubtedly, he has been one among those stalwarts of literature who have worked with all allegiance for uplifting Dogri Language and help in inspiring others also to come ahead and write in mother tongue. He has been a torch bearer in this movement since long and is still enriching the literature with his outstanding contributions. Like a true literary genius, he feels that there are so many dimensions to every aspect of life and nature that need to be explored through words. He wishes that the mission to take mother tongue to new heights should be a continuous process and he himself has been at the job at his own and wishes others also to contribute for a noble cause. He has been a writer par excellence and has been author of more than 43 books that include 9 Poetry collections , 4 Short Stories Collections ,15 Stage Plays , a collection of One-Act plays, collection of selected Radio plays, 3 Novels, 4 Essays/Articles collections, 3 books for children , one book related to 1965 war and an Auto-biography of 640 pages that is a document of not only different incidents taking place in his life but also his surroundings predominantly literary circles etc. In addition to it, he has been regularly contributing to different magazines, All India Radio and different channels of Doordarshan also. With all these contributions he has carved a niche for himself in literature.
If we cast a look at his writings then it needs to be added here that he has touched almost all aspects of life and his writings have been such a valuable treasure that will go on inspiring the youths and Dogri literature lovers forever. It’s a fact that he has written as a mission and made it a point that every contribution should have a worth.
For his contributions to literature and performing arts he has been honoured by different Government and Non Government organizations like Padma Shri by Govt. of India 2018,Sahitya Akademi Award for novel ‘Sanjhi Dharti Bakhle Mahnu’ in 1978, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award as a playwright in 2008, Sahitya Akademi’s Translation Award in 2018, Dinu Bhai Panat’s Memorial Life Time Achievement Award 2019, State Academy’s Best book award 1967, 1969,1972, 1977, 1990, 1994 and 2012. This also includes novel ‘Sanjhi Dharti Bakhle Mahnu’ (SA Award) and ‘Ram Lila’ which also stands awarded by J&K Dharamarth Trust, BIG DUGGAR AWARD (People’s choice) by FM 92.7 Radio in 2016 and several others. The list is quite a long one. But he regards the love and affection derived from his fans is actually the recognition of his efforts.
There are so many dimensions to towering personality like N D Jamwal. It is pertinent to add here that he was also interested in line drawing and use of colours from school days. He was guided by Pt. Sansar Chand Baru, a well known artist of J&K who inspired him to step into this field sincerely in early sixties. He was a committed painter and participated in many art exhibition organized by J&K State Artists at the then Gulab Bhawan Jammu in 1962. Later on when he came in contact with late Shri Vidya Rattan Khajuria, an international fame in sculpture, he got an urge for making sculptures and became a sculptor. He proved his worth in this field also with participation in different Exhibitions organized in state as well as out of the state. Soon he started getting critically acclaimed as a painter and sculptor too.
As a creative man, N D Jamwal has so much to his credit that one wonders about his achievements in all fields of his interest. He loves to share his knowledge with younger ones and listening to him is always a treat and blessing. Another much acclaimed quality of this great man is that he is a very good critic and never restricts himself from giving his viewpoint on literature or performing arts. With years of yeomen services rendered to literature and performing arts he has been an authority to put forth his criticism. Although there are so many who love to be called as critics but he belongs to a different class and performs his duty with all honesty whenever he finds an opportunity. He criticizes not merely for criticism unlike others but with a creative angle that helps the creator of any literary or art piece to deliver in a better way in future.
The persons like N D Jamwal are an asset for the society who inspire so many from all walks of life. It is tough to excel in a particular field but Jamwal has excelled in all fields that inspired him whether it’s Literature, Performing Arts or Sports.