Jammu, August 29: What’s sports? “Activities that refresh your mental and physical health.” This is what most of the people will tell you. But is that it?
No, not to all. Ask a sports geek and the answer will surely be different. There are people who spend their entire lives in playing or serving multiple games, hence the sport becomes an unmissable part of their life.
Pertinently, Ranjeet Kalra, a professor at Jammu University, is an excellent example of how sports leaves an undying impact on people’s lives. Kalra started as a cricketer, went on to play for J&K team. However, even after biding adieu to game as player, he continues to be an ambassador. Deeply respected and revered for his sporting initiatives, both as an administrator and for somebody who cares for the welfare of sportspersons, Kalra is presently J&KCA’s representative to BCCI.
Kalra keeps himself involved in multiple games. He leaves no stone unturned to help the sports and sportspeople grow. In one such move, the Jammu native is actually the man behind the temple of Legendary Hockey Player Dhyan Chand at KK Hakku Stadium, the only astro-turf Hockey field in Jammu, where sportspeople on national sports day pay tributes.
This temple not only serves as a religious and inspiring monument for the sports lovers but is also a motivational sight for those who visit this stadium.
Every year, National Sports Day Celebrations are held in memory of Major Dhyan Chand at the KK Hakku Temple, thanks to Sh Ranjeet Kalra.
“It was around mid August 2010 that I shared the idea with the then Sports Minister, Sh RS Chib, and he was very forthcoming. But he directed me to get the decesion implemented myself as I envisioned it.” Kalra says about the temple.
“Thereafter, I contacted the famous Basoli Painter of J&K, Sohan Singh Billawaria- who had earlier painted all the portraits of Governors of J&K at Raj Bhavan- to make a life size acrilic hand-painted portrait of Major Dhyan Chand. Held meetings with the then DG Sports, Shamim Leharwal, and the engineering wing of the Sports Council.” He narrates.
“I designed the temple, researched for the brief history to be written on it and basic layout of plants and hockey sticks that were engraved on the black marble. My Sporting Friends SP Singh, the then manager of KK Hakku Stadium and the Contractor Sh Ajay Sharma worked day and night to meet the deadline of the inauguration on 29th of August i.e The National Sports Day.” Kalra concludes.