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Day 2 of National Seminar on Maharaja Gulab Singh at JU marks visit to Jia Potta, Panel Discussions

JAMMU: Second day of a three-day National Seminar on ‘Revisiting Life and Legacy of Maharaja Gulab Singh' Thursday marked visit to the coronation site of Maharaja at Jia Potta, Akhnoor.

Besides paper presentation by participants, an exclusive panel discussion on different facets of the life of Maharaja Gulab Singh was also witnessed on the second day of the event, which has been organised by the Department of History, University of Jammu in collaboration with Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR), Jammu Kashmir Study Centre and Maharaja Gulab Singh Research Centre.

During a visit to the Jia Potta Akhnoor, renowned historian and former Vice Chancellor of Central University of Himachal Pradesh-Prof Kuldeep Chand Agnihotri threw light on the contribution of Maharaja Gulab Singh in integrating India.

"Gulab Singh has laid the foundation of Jammu and Kashmir by apparently snatching part of Sapt Sindhu from clutches of Britishers," he said and added that youth should be made aware about the vision of Maharaja.

He shared that when kings across the Indian subcontinent were involved in revenge wars, Maharaja Gulab Singh took initiative to integrate and safeguard Indian borders.

"Maharaja Gulab Singh was assiduous, handsome and robust-the qualities which earned him the admiration of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. He also possessed a character which could both charm and retaliate," said Prof Kuldeep Chand Agnihotri, adding Maharaja Gulab Singh and Maharaja Ranjit Singh successfully fought nefarious designs of Turks, Mughals and Afghans.

He maintained, despite the high rate of conversion during the invasion of outsiders across North West India and other parts, Maharaja Gulab Singh managed to keep people connected to their roots. "Such was the aura of Maharaja Gulab Singh that Sikh emperor-Maharaja Ranjit Singh travelled to Jammu to coronate him," said Prof Agnihotri.

The day concluded with a colorful cultural evening, in which students of the University presented different kinds of cultural events, particularly pertaining to the culture of Jammu and Kashmir.

Earlier, paper presentation was followed by an exclusive panel discussion, chaired by Prof Shyam Narayan Lal, wherein Prof KN Pandita spoke about ‘Maharaja Gulab Singh and his times', Captain Alok Bansal talked about ‘Maharaja Gulab Singh and his contributions to establishment of India's Northern Frontiers' and Advocate Rajeev K Pandey provided an insightful lecture on ‘Integration Process of Jammu and Kashmir.'

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