Thursday, 18 February 2010

Book release: The Maharaja Ranjit Singh Fort, Phillaur.

Book release: The Maharaja Ranjit Singh Fort, Phillaur.

A coffee table book titled ‘The Maharaja Ranjit Singh Fort, Phillaur’ jointly compiled and edited by Director of the Punjab Police Academy, Phillaur, RS Gill and DJ Singh, Senior Deputy Director and Dean of the Academy was released today as a part of the bi-centennial celebrations of the fort. The book is a beautiful journey through the historical events related to the fort.

Addressing the gathering, Gill said the enchanting fort of Phillaur was one of the jewels of Punjab. Built as a ‘sarai’ by the Mughals, it was converted into a fort by Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1809 to protect against his frontiers. Its uniqueness lies in its architecture being mainly Mughal, but partly Sikh, partly British and even modern Indian. As the fort completes 200 years, it has changed hands from a Mughal ‘sarai’ to a Sikh bastion, to a centre of higher police education.

The story of Phillaur fort is intricately linked with the Punjab Police whose training centre has been located here since 1891. Thousands of officers and men/women, British as well Indian before Independence, Punjabi as well as from other states and countries after Independence have undergone their basic and advanced training here.

DJ Singh said this coffee table book was the first narrative history of the Phillaur fort built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh during his lifetime. The book is a comprehensive chronicle of the life and times of one of the most strategically situated fort with important artillery and garrison installations in the country. The book refreshingly steps beyond the most basic of stories, however, and attempt to place the fort in context of the national and international events to which it was called upon to respond. The fort has played a vital role in pioneering the formal police training in the country that has become its hallmark.

IGP BK Garg, deputy director (Indoor) MF Farooqui, deputy director (admn) Kamal Kumar, Yurinder Singh Hayer, deputy director (Outdoor) and Narinder Bhargav, deputy director (General) of the academy were present on the occasion.

Phillaur, February 18, Tribune India

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