Remembering Sher-e-Duggar

Ravi Rohmetra
Duggar land has its own brilliant and unique history. It has given birth to verteran political, academicians, social workers, journalists, singers, actors, justice, doctors gernals and leaders of caliber. One amongst them has been Hans Raj Mahajan. This is the tale of this towering personality who worked selflessly for the cause of the people. He was friend, a guide and a social worker. During his life time he was counted amongst the great personalities of Jammu. The main aim and objective of Hans Raj Mahajan remained to help the families below poverty line. He always believed that service to humanity is the service to God. This is the basic reasons that the poor masses remember him as their Godfather and his name is being token with great love, respect and honour.
By the turn of the nineteenth century, Jammu started experiencing reverberations of the political and social awakening like in the rest of the country. Lala Hans Raj Mahajan was the most outstanding leader of that phase of Jammu’s history. He pioneered formation of associations of various communities like the Mahajan Sabha and the Rajput Sabha as also of the Anjuman-i-Islamia and acted as their honorary secretary which ensured their mutual cooperation in the common task of social reform.
The first secular organization of the state, also non-political to start with, was Dogra Sadar Sabha in 1904. He dominated the entire social reform movement in Jammu region for half a century from 1892, when he entered public life, to 1944 when he died. His field of work included campaign for Swadeshi, rights of women, spread of education, economic betterment of backward areas, reform in ceremonies observed at marriage, death and other social occasions, help to widows and orphans, cow protection, cleanliness and redressal of grievances against omissions and commissions of administration. Needless to remind that these activities were vital adjuncts of the national freedom movement. Lala Hans Raj started first two monthly newspapers in the state named the Dogra Gazette and The mahajan Niti Patar in 1907.
He served the people of the state and different biradris for a long time in various capacities and always worked for poor and down trodden section of society. Mahajan was a real friend of people and man of high stature. The contribution of Sher-e-Duggar in providing water to people of Kandi belt through tube wells was path breaking initiative and this system still holds key in meeting drinking water demands to these and other area in Jammu. The best way of paying tributes to the late Sher-e Duggar is to follow his style of providing service without self to people. Hans Raj Mahajan was one of the tallest leaders of his time and was famous for his qualities of leadership and was dear to all classes of people. His contribution to society would always be remembered by generations to come. No doubt mahajan ji is not with us but due to his selfless service for mankind his name will always live in our hearts.


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