Save Tagore Hall, preserve legacy

If one does not have knowledge about how our iconic figures , spiritual giants , historical people of eminence, saints , great thinkers, great warriors etc have vastly contributed towards the society, country, its culture , literature , progress and prosperity , one can at least be content in preserving those symbols , monuments and legacies named after them. Any tampering with or interfering in with intent to dislodging their present status is tantamount to disregarding and disrespecting them with ulterior move to erase their fair image from the minds and the psyche of the people. Kashmir has unfortunately been witness to a peculiar scenario of having lot of places , villages, localities , hills etc rechristened to detach them from their glorious historical past. We need not go into the details as that would open an unending proverbial Pandora’s Box.
Is culture, literature , art etc now getting a secondary treatment from what is deserved when compared to the scenario existing four or five decades ago ? If it is not so, how many Halls, Auditoriums, Buildings, Roads, educational institutions etc. in Jammu and Kashmir, in particular Kashmir, are now named after noted historical and iconic figures ? The answer would be practically nil . Agreed, this unfortunate scenario isthere more for political reasons than for reasons of a huge deficit in tastes and longings for them. The lovers of art and our legacies are virtually shocked over reports , though unconfirmed , that the famous Tagore Hall in Srinagar built during the period and inaugurated by the then ‘Prime Minister ‘ of Jammu and Kashmir State, Bakshi Gulam Mohammed in 1961 in presence of Morarji Desai , was going to be converted into some other utility than what actually meant for in that it was not the question of changing the very purpose of that Hall but erasing the name of Nobel laureate poet and philosopher Rabinder Nath Tagore. That great poet , who besides his vast contribution to literature and art, has immortalised himself with the famous song which became proud National Anthem of India .
If this move fructifies into the reality , that would simply be quite unfortunate and would only be termed as ignorance , not innocent one decidedly. It is well said that “Knowledge can never imprison you, but you can be captive to your ignorance .” These are living monuments and we can trace our history from them . This Hall has hosted artists of eminence from time to time who enthralled the audience with their performance , there have been literary events, Koshur conferences, Kashmir World Film festivals, innumerable plays enacted, art exhibitions , Mushairas, promotion of theatre culture and what not. Even during peak Pakistan sponsored militancy , this Hall has offered its ‘hospitality’ . It would demand nothing from us excepting arranging more and more art and cultural events but never erasing it from the land otherwise known for promoting art , crafts, culture , paintings , dramas and the like.
Sentiments of Kashmir’s artists’ fraternity need to be respected and their fears allayed by a proper announcement by the UT Government of Jammu and Kashmir that there was absolutely no move to demolish the beautiful pillar of historical and cultural importance in Kashmir. In fact , there should be more and still more events held in this historic Hall which besides promoting art would keep on letting people remember Tagore and, perhaps most if not all those who mesmerised and fascinated thousands of art lovers all these years. It may be recalled that Kashmir, which has received enough blows during the last three decades of Pakistan aided and sponsored terrorism , could hardly tolerate this severe blow.