Browsing through the H.P. Govt. website the other day , I came across a Black Border notification uploaded , informing about the sad demise of a service colleague , Mr. Baldev Ram Thakur after a prolonged terminal illness. Shocked beyond words , this once again took me some 14-15 years back in timeline to refresh the memory of our first meeting .
I was posted in Kinnaur and was required to appear for Govt. evidence in some court case at Nahan . Since Mr. Baldev Thakur was posted as Assistant Commissioner, I made him a telephonic request to book accommodation for a night’s stay at the Circuit House in Nahan. I reached on a day before the appointed day and went straight to him . He had a set booked in my name as requested .When after having a cup of tea with him, as I rose to take leave, he at once extended an invitation to have dinner with him. I went to his residence at the appointed time and was entertained with a nice satisfying dinner. Though this was our first meeting, we talked and talked as if we had known each other for years. His hospitality did not end there as again he asked me to have lunch at his place the next day , even though he had to go out for some official work. He actually deputed a junior officer to be an escort and accompany me at lunch. This was his human side where he came across as a thorough gentleman, rather a gem of a man. On the official side, he was a dedicated and efficient officer with exemplary devotion to duty. A photograph of his with the then President Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma giving him an award bears ample testimony to this. He had already sought premature retirement on health grounds w.e.f. March 2013, but bade adieu even earlier. !
R.I.P. Mr. Thakur ! There are only a few like you .