Showing posts with label Tenzing Norgey. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tenzing Norgey. Show all posts

Bharat Ratna for Tenzing Norgay reminds Ahluwalia to PM

9:03 AM
Darjeeling 30 May 2016 Darjeeling MP Surendra Singh Ahluwalia has written to the prime minister reminding and urging him to confer the Bharat Ratna to Tenzing Norgay, the most iconic personality of the Darjeeling hills whose 102nd birth anniversary was celebrated on Sunday.

Ahluwalia evoked the prime minister’s speech delivered in Sukna in 2014 where he had said Norgay has been one of the most iconic and inspirational personalities of the nation. And that the climber had been relegated to the background and his immense contribution towards strengthening Indian identity was not recognised as it should be.

The MP’s letter includes part of what Narendra Modi said on April 10, 2014, “In your speech you said the previous government did not bestow honour to Norgay thinking he was just another guide/porter from the hills. You also said the demand of the

Indian flag that reached the top of Mt. Everest with Tenzing Norgay in Himalayan Mountaineering Institute Darjeeling
Gorkhas of not only the country but the world over is to award Norgay with the Bharat Ratna.” The Darjeeling MP urged the prime minister to play an instrumental role in ensuring Norgay is conferred the prestigious Bharat Ratna and rectify the indifferent attitude of the previous governments.

Tenzing Norgay and New Zealander Sir Edmund Hillary were the first to set foot on Mount Everest on May 29, 1953, a feat which at that time was unimaginable. It was after this that the central government decided to establish the now famous Himalayan Mountaineering Institute in Darjeeling.

The push to confer Norgay with the Bharat Ratna started 20 years ago but lost steam as sportspersons were outside the purview of this highest civilian award. However, in a landmark change in 2012, the UPA government placed an amended bill and got it passed, thus bringing sports personalities in the ambit of the award. Cricketer Sachin Tendulkar was the first to be conferred the award even though the names of Norgay and hockey legend Dhyan Chand had cropped up as potential recipients.

The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the Sherpa community too are demanding the Bharat Ratna for Norgay. The movement gained momentum in 2015 when NASA named the first discovered mountain in Pluto as ‘Norgay Montes’. “I make a plea on behalf of all Gorkhas living in the country that our national hero should be awarded the Bharat Ratna. This will recognise the service, hard work and dedication of the Gorkha community towards the nation,” GJM president Bimal Gurung said in a press statement.

The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration has also written to the Centre seeking to rename Bagdogra airport and National Highway 55 after the legendary climber and to install his statue in Parliament’s premises. NH55 is the primary link joining the hills to the plains.

 Norgay has been awarded with the George medal and Coronation medal by the British government, the Iran Shah Medal and the Nepal Tara and Nepal Pratap Vardak awards. The Indian government has honoured Tenzing Norgay (also known as Tiger of the Snows) with the Padma Bhusan.


How Can Those, Who Failed to Grant Bharat Ratna to TENZING SHERPA, Give Us Gorkhaland?

7:55 AM
Asks: Wangyal Tamang 

I would like to share some flaws and point out those who are intentionally trying to mislead the people as a whole.

Every political candidates from different party are seducing our people with false promises, some talk about Gorkhaland while other talks about lack of development but till date none of the party have passed a resolution defending separate state neither in district level nor in state level.

According to previous election Tenzing Norgay Sherpa Should have been awarded with Bharat Ratna.
How Can Those, Who Failed to Grant Bharat Ratna to TENZING SHERPA, Give Us Gorkhaland?
Legendary Tenzing Norgay with India's 1st PM Jawaharlal Nehru at Darjeeling in 1954

Our Current MP have promised awarding Bhatar Ratna to Tenzing Norgay Sherpa but no one dare to recall and point his mistakes.

If they can't give Bharat Ratna to Legendary Tenzing Sherpa how can they give us a separate state?

Via TheDC

100 years of Tindharia workshop - DHR, Darjeeling Himalayan Railway

12:37 PM
1915-2015: 100 years of Tindharia Works, A UNESCO World Heritage Area
Article by: DHR Sano Rail

This year celebrates 100 years of Tindharia Works. It has always been considered a location relatively safe from landslips but this was to change in 2011.

The only background information I have of Tindharia is to be found in the late Terry Martin’s books ‘Halfway to Heaven’ and ‘Iron Sherpa’ - although I remember conversations with some local residents of the area over the past 20 years,
100 years of Tindharia workshop - DHR, Darjeeling Himalayan Railway

Until the early 19th Century, the Darjeeling Hills were heavily forested and largely unpopulated apart from the indigenous Lepcha people. I am not certain as to exactly where the area which is now Tindharia lay in relation to the borders of the kingdoms of Bhutan, Nepal and Sikkim before the British Raj purchased land around Darjeeling and Kurseong from Sikkim as sanatoriums and summer resorts.

The first roads into the area, to link Siliguri and Darjeeling, were the Pankabari Road up to Kurseong and then the Military Road across to Darjeeling. However, these were steep mountain tracks suitable only for pack horses rather than wheeled carts. The Hill Cart Road (now NH55 Tensing Norgay Road) was built around 1861 with a steady gradient up which two bullocks could haul a cart. It was largely along this formation that the DHR was constructed in 1879 - 81 to reduce the almost prohibitive cost of taking supplies up to Darjeeling and bringing down the products of the rapidly developing tea industry.

Tindharia was built as a ‘railway town’ by the DHR around its mechanical headquarters. It is said that the location, which is logistically illogical for a workshop, was chosen for being the lowest point in the Darjeeling Hills, on the DHR, where the British employees could work year round. It should be remembered that, at that time, Siliguri was just a very small settlement around the railway junction between the North Bengal Railway from Calcutta (through what is now Bangladesh) and the DHR up to Darjeeling and considered to be a most unhealthy location to spend any time.

The current workshop complex at Tindharia was not built until 1913 - 15. From 1881 until then, it is assumed that the large locomotive shed there, with the godowns around it, was also used as the workshops for major locomotive and rolling stock repairs. This would make sense as the Chief Mechanical Engineer’s bungalow and the Mechanical Department offices were adjacent to it. The original bungalow was a single storey wooden structure with a veranda, similar to many of the Tea Planters bungalows of the period, but was replaced in the mid 1940s with the current two-storey building in the then fashionable Indian interpretation of Art Deco style - which can also be seen at Darjeeling Station. The office building was destroyed during the political disturbances of the mid 1980s - although the remains still exist.

The first railway colonies were built around Tindharia station and the Locomotive Shed and include the bazaar area. Later ones were constructed further down the hill nearer to the new Workshops. I don’t know if it still exists, but the only street map I have seen of Tindharia was (2004) framed in the electric generating plant in the Workshops and also had the power lines into the town marked on it.
The opening of the new Workshops (which are just about to celebrate their centenary) coincided with the major expansion of the DHR system with new lines from Siliguri to Kishanganj (connecting with the metre gauge line to Katihar) and up the Teesta Valley (to develop international trading with Tibet at Kalimpong). Other developments at this time included the hospital at Tindharia, new headquarters offices for the DHR at Kurseong (adjacent to the station), the DHR Club at Kurseong (now All India Radio) and a new railway colony at Kurseong, which incorporating the railway officers’ residences above what is now the Tourist Lodge.

Until the DHR company sold out to Indian Railways in 1947, the method of working the line was very different to that of today. Not only were the now extinct freight facilities considerably larger (and more profitable) than the passenger services but all train operation was based at Tindharia. Therefore Tindharia was home not only to the workshop overhaul staff but to most of the routine maintenance staff, loco drivers, firemen, sanders, guards, jamader / brakesmen etc. Locomotives and their crews all started from Tindharia and worked on a cycle of diagrams which might involve spending one or more nights away from home at Darjeeling or Kurseong or Siliguri. One retired driver told me that at the height of the spring tea season, he had to make four round trips between Tindharia and Sukna each day to clear the loaded wagons off the Hills as fast as possible for a larger loco to assemble longer trains onwards to Siliguri and transhipment onto the Broad Gauge for Calcutta.

In its last year as a private company, the DHR employed at Tindharia:
• 1 Chief Mechanical Engineer
o 1 Chief Clerk
8 Clerks
1 Steno typist
1 Tracer
3 Menials
o 1 Loco Officer
1 Coal Inspector
3 Coal Clerks
30 Drivers
31 Firemen
200 Jamaders and Brakesmen
45 Jackmen and Loco Cleaners
1 Shed Clerk
2 Running Clerks
2 Callmen
o 1 Store Keeper
1 Head Clerk
7 Clerks
9 Menials
o 1 Workshop Foreman
1 Assistant Chargeman
2 Shop Clerks
2 Peons
2 Timekeepers
5 Chowkidars
88 Fitters
27 Drillers and Turners
12 Boilermakers
50 Riveters
16 Blacksmiths
14 Strikers
23 Carpenters
4 Coppersmiths
4 Tailors
16 Painters
11 Moulders
28 Khalasis
1 Tindal
1 Sweeper
• 1 Medical Officer (at Kurseong)
o 2 Assistant Medical Officers
1 Compounder
1 Nurse
1 Dresser
2 Menials
• 1 Commercial Inspector
o 2 Station Masters (including relief)
o 2 Assistant Station Masters (including relief)
12 Guards
2 Travelling Ticket Examiners
• 683 Total

This list does not include Civil Engineering and Permanent Way staff nor other Commercial passenger or freight staff based at Tindharia (as the inventory does not split the location of these establishments).

The Mechanical Engineering Department did not function as separate Open Line and Workshop divisions - only maintenance (all types) and train crews.

Although all the above employees were based at Tindharia, some of their work-output was actually for the DHR extension lines from Siliguria to Teesta Valley or Kishanganj, not the DHR main line to Darjeeling.

It is probable that the above establishment levels were much higher than those in the 1930s since the DHR had only just started reducing its operations after World War II - when road traffic was restricted, many special trains were run for the Army (both rest leave and medical convalescence in the Hills) and Tindharia Workshops was undertaking production of many Broad Gauge railway components to allow other railway workshops in India to increase output of military hardware.

Today, Tindharia is best described as a ‘ghost town’; a shadow of its former self. The DHR no longer runs services to Teesta Valley and Kishanganj or freight trains and the remaining passenger services are now based at Darjeeling and Siliguri. Only a much-reduced establishment at the Workshops, the last in India to give heavy repairs to steam locomotives and wooden bodied coaches, remains to give local employment. Even the passing trade of cars, taxis and buses up the Hill Cart Road requiring refreshments has ceased because of landslips either side of the town in 2010 - 12 and again recently.

It is hoped that the soon-to-commence UNESCO Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan (CCMP) for the DHR will recognise that all the non-railway, environmental, social and cultural criteria of the World Heritage Site listing (as well as the obvious railway elements) are summarised in the railway town of Tindharia and that a sub-plan can be developed to give the area a sustainable future and hope.

Gorkha Rashtriya Congress suggests five names for Bagdogra airport

9:53 AM
After the BJP opened the Pandora’s Box, demands to rename the Bagdogra airport have started rising thick and fast, with the latest demand coming from the Gorkha Rashtriya Congress (GRC), a Hills political party inclined towards merger of Darjeeling with Sikkim.
The Bagdogra airport terminal.
The Bagdogra airport terminal.
The five names shortlisted by GRC for renaming Bagdogra are: Ari Bahadur Gurung, Ganju Lama and Savitri Devi, Darjeeling and Denzong. GRC has earlier started a campaign seeking opinion and recommendations from political outfits, associations and the general people for a suitable name for Bagdogra airport.

On Friday, senior leaders of the party submitted a memorandum to the Darjeeling district administration to place their demand. “We met the district magistrate today and submitted a memorandum with our recommendations to rename the Bagdogra airport in Siliguri, to be placed to the Prime Minister’s Office and the Civil Aviation minister in Delhi. We have shortlisted five possible names connected with Darjeeling and Sikkim,” said GRC working president Asoke Lepcha said in a Press briefing.

According to the GRC, Gurung’s name was shortlisted as he was a member of the committee that drafted the Indian constitution. Gurung is from Darjeeling. Lama is a Victoria Cross recipient and Savitri Devi also known as Helen Lepcha was the first female from the region, to participate in India’s Swaraj movement. Both of them are from Sikkim.

The name Darjeeling airport was selected because of brand Darjeeling and the large arrivals  of national and international visitors. The last name Denzong airport was chosen because earlier the Darjeeling and Sikkim region was known as “Valley of Rice” and also to exemplify the relation between the two areas.

“Our party’s opinion is to rename Bagdogra airport as Denzong airport because our political agenda relates to the merger of Darjeeling with Sikkim. Historically, too, Darjeeling was part of Sikkim and never of Bengal. However, the other names selected are based on people’s recommendations that we got through our campaign,” GRC president Nima Lama said.

When reminded that the name of legendary mountaineer Tenzing Norgay Sherpa was also in the run, the GRC working president said, “Tenzing Norgay already has a mountain in Pluto, roads and bus terminus named after him. We feel there are others too in region that deserves to be honoured with due respect to the mountaineer”.

The GRC will also write to the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the chief ministers of Bengal and Sikkim to recommend to the Centre one the names from the five shortlisted.
BJP MP Tarun Vijay, an ardent follower of Syama Prasad Mookerjee, had set the ball rolling by meeting Union civil aviation minister P Ashok Gajapati Raju and placing the demand to rename Bagdogra airport after Jana Sangh founder and BJP's inspiration Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee.

Since then demand has also been made by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) and also by family members and Sherpa community to rename Bagdogra airport after Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, the first man along with Sir Edmund Hillary, to set foot on Mount Everest in May 1953.


Bharat Ratna and statue of Tenzing Norgay Sherpa in Parliament demands GTA

9:10 AM
Taking cue from NASA, the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) has become proactive and has decided to write to the Centre, to install a statue of Tenzing Norgay Sherpa in the premises of Parliament and naming the Bagdogra airport in the legendary mountaineer’s name.
Tenzing Norgay receiving his Padma Bhusan
Tenzing Norgay receiving his Padma Bhusan
This comes in the wake of NASA naming the first discovered mountain in Pluto- ‘Norgay Montes’ after Tenzing Norgay. “We thank NASA for conferring such a huge honour to Tenzing Norgay which gives pride to all Gorkhalis and the Darjeeling Hills. They (NASA) could have named the newly discovered mountain in Pluto after any American legends but they did not,” said GTA chief executive Bimal Gurung on Sunday.

Terming the legendary mountaineer as a global icon, the GTA chief executive said time had come for the country to acknowledge Tenzing Norgay’s greatness. “As NASA honours our legend, time has come for our Government to acknowledge Tenzing’s greatness and contribution to the country,” Gurung said in a Press statement that was issued after an internal meeting of the council body during the day in Darjeeling.

Tenzing Norgay along with New Zealander Sir Edmund Hillary was the first to set foot on Mount Everest on May 29, 1953, a feat which at that time was unimaginable.

The Sherpa community in the Darjeeling Hills have long been demanding conferring Tenzing Norgay with the Bharat Ratna but which the Centre has not acceded to.

On Sunday, the GTA took a decision to write to the President and the Prime Minister in this regard. “In 2014, our Prime Minister had stated how the entire nation was inspired by Tenzing Norgay’s unparallel achievement. We will remind him about his statement and also request the President to confer Tenzing Norgay with the Bharat Ratna, to respect his legacy and also encourage the present and coming generations to strive for excellence,” said Gurung.

The GTA will also write to the Centre seeking the renaming of NH-55, the primary link between the Hills and plains and Bagdogra airport. “NH-55 is officially named Tenzing Norgay Highway but this nomenclature is not used. I will write to the union road transport and highway minister to rename NH-55 in the mountaineer’s name. This aside, we also want Bagdogra airport, the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute and the Rajdhani Express from NJP to Delhi to be named after the late mountaineer,” Gurung said.

The late mountaineer’s son Jamling Tenzing Norgay Sherpa expressed gratitude to NASA for the honour conferred to his father. “It is surprising. Wish our Government took the initiative to remember and honour my father’s achievements and laurels he has brought to the country,” he said.

Tenzing Norgay was awarded the George medal and Coronation medal from the British government, the Iran Shah Medal and the Nepal Tara and Nepal Pratap Vardak awards. The Indian government had on the other hand honoured Tenzing with the Padma Bhusan. PTI

Via : EOI

NASA named the Pluto's mountain chain as "Norgay Montes" after Tenzing Norgay Sherpa

11:02 AM
Sanjog Chamling for IG

Scientists at NASA have named the Pluto's mountain chain as "Norgay Montes" after Tenzing Norgay Sherpa an Indian Gorkha Sherpa mountaineer.When Indian government have failed to confer Bharat Ratna to Tenzing, NASA have bestowed him with this prestigious honor.

NASA's New Horizons historic flyby of Pluto have found icy mountains ( "Norgay Montes") when the first zoomed-in image of Pluto was released on Wednesday. They think mountains, which was often referred to as just an icy orb before,  are made of water ice, but they still aren't sure what's causing them to form.

Pluto's mountain chain as "Norgay Montes"
Pluto's mountain chain "Norgay Montes"
People at home have been trying to recognize Tenzing  Sherpa's achievement by asking the Government to confer him with the Bharat Ratna which is the highest civilian award of the Republic of India. He was one of the first two individuals known to reach the summit of Mount Everest, which he accomplished with Edmund Hillary on 29 May 1953.

At the time when people have been trying to get some attention of the government regarding Sherpa's due right by placing the demand to rename Bagdogra airport after him and a request to confer Bharat Ratna to Tenzing, prestigious honor from NASA might play some role to reach the voice to the deaf ears of the concerned Indian authorities.

First successful Mt Everest scaling team demands Bharat Ratna for Tenzing Norgey

7:44 AM
The first successful scaling of Mount Everest by a team sent by the Indian government in 1965 was always considered an epitome of team spirit, but the captain of the group today recalled how it endured well after the expedition.
First successful Mt Everest scaling team demands Bharat Ratna for Tenzing Norgey
(Seated from left) GS Bhangu, Brigadier (retd) Mulk Raj and Capt (rtd) MS Kohli, who scaled
 Mount Everest in 1965, at the HMI in Darjeeling on Friday. Picture by Suman Tamang
Captain (retired) M.S. Kohli, who had led the 19-member team, said the government had to backtrack from a decision to confer the Arjuna Award on only a few of the climbers following pressure from him.

"We were told (in 1965) that the Arjuna Award (the highest award in sports in India) would be conferred on 11 members of the team. The government had finalised the names of the expedition leader, the deputy leader and nine climbers who had set foot on Everest," Kohli told an event at the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute here today.

The event was held to felicitate the team on the golden jubilee of the expedition and to mark the 101st birth anniversary of Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, the first to climb Mount Everest, along with Sir Edmund Hillary, on May 29, 1953.

The deputy leader of the 1965 Everest expedition team was Captain N. Kumar.

"I attended a meeting with the government officials who told us that 11 members would be given the award. I immediately put my foot down and told them that if the government planned to honour the members, then they would have to honour the entire team as the expedition was a team effort," said Kohli.

The meeting, according to Kohli, dragged on for three to four hours. "The officials maintained that it was not possible to give the highest award to all the members and they normally gave the award to only one member of a team who had excelled. The officials contended that they had already decided to confer the award on 11 members," said Kohli.

"I realised that the government officials were not willing to budge from their stand. It is then that I told the officials that if the Arjuna Award was to be given, it had to be one award and it should not be for any individual but for the entire team," said Kohli.

Finally, the entire team was given the Arjuna Award by the government. "Till date, ours is the only team in the country to get an Arjuna Award and we have always been proud of this."

The award is currently kept at the Indian Mountaineering Foundation in Delhi.

The 1965 Indian team had set two world records. The team had created a world record by sending the most number of climbers to the Everest peak. Nawang Gombu, a member of the team, also became the first man to climb Mount Everest twice. Gombu had scaled Everest once before in 1963, along with Jim Whittaker, in the first successful US expedition.

On May 20, 1965, two members of the expedition, Capt. A.S. Cheema and Nawang Gombu, climbed the peak on the first day. Two days later, on May 22, Sonam Gyatso and Sonam Wangyal reached the summit and on May 24, C.P. Vohra and Ang Kami scaled Everest only to be followed by Captain H.P.S. Ahluwalia, H.C.S. Rawat and Phu Dorji on May 29, 1965.

Colonel Gulshan Chaddha, the principal of the HMI, today proposed that the Centre declare May 29 as a National Mountaineering Day. "Given the significance of the day, it would be great if the day is declared as a National Mountaineering Day," said Chaddha.

Of the 19 climbers who scaled the Everest in 1965, nine are alive and three attended the felicitation today. Apart from Captain (retired) M.S. Kohli, Brigadier (retd) Mulk Raj and G.S. Bhangu were present in Darjeeling today.

"Sonam Wangyal and C.P. Vohra had to drop their plans at the last moment because of illness in their families," said Chaddha. However, the next of kin of Captain A.S. Cheema, Sonam Gyatso and Sonam Wangyal were present at the event.

Talking about the 1965 expedition, Brigadier (retd) Mulk Raj said: "I was part of the 1962 Indian expedition team led by Major John Dias. The Indian team had failed to summit the peak by a few hundred meters in 1960 also and Major Dias had told us to make it a mission and not just a another expedition to climb Everest."

Major Dias died in 1964.

"The entire expedition was a team effort. We carried head loads to ensure that those who would make a bid to the top remained fresh. We used to relay our weather information to Delhi and the All India Radio would give us an update on the weather conditions. We would hear the AIR bulletin for the weather details. We had also sent chappatis and pickles to the top for the climbers. Such was the team spirit," said Mulk Raj.

Captain Kohli today also batted for conferring Bharat Ratna, the country's highest award, on Tenzing Norgay.

Source: Telegraph

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