Tag Archives: BCS

Crayon drawings of BCS – by Himmat Singh [1962 Batch]

Crayons by Himmat Singh [1952-62 Rivaz House] of our main school in 1958, before the fountain came up. Note the tin shed verandah ,before dorms came up!
[Click the pictures for a larger view]

Some random thoughts – Indi Khanna

On the cusp of adding another year in my life I find myself, uncharacteristically, sitting idle at my clean-as-a-whistle office table.  With little else to do, one’s mind does tend to wander.  So today I very consciously gave it a free rein, allowing it to meander along down my 67 years, picking up little bits and pieces at random, piecing them together into a mirror for me to peer into.

The reflection I see has left me thoroughly confused, wondering whether it was my education which was flawed, or am I stuck in time while our nation has moved on?

Becoming a boarder at a tender age of 5, through my eleven years in Bishop Cotton, our universally relevant school motto, Overcome Evil With Good, was practically etched in my mind, becoming almost my middle name.  Oh yes, I’d have happily gone through life, dispensing with the “Singh” and instead being called Gurrinder Overcome Evil With Good Khanna.

The confusion now, when I am almost 67 years old, stems from me trying to once again define, identify and separate the ‘Good‘ from the ‘Evil‘.

During my formative years and all the way through to quite recently, those two characteristics were stark and easily identifiable.  Most unfortunately, not so any longer.  Our “democracy” today has brought us to the now when, I for one, am left groping in the dark, trying to understand what happened and actually questioning my own upbringing.  Am I now going to have to re-educate myself into believing that I am different to ‘them’?  Am I?  Different – how?

We need to pause.  We need to rewind and go back to thinking with our own minds.  Not with the minds of others who would try and overturn years of education and rational thought. Maybe we now need the second coming of one who was the unborn nation’s lodestar and guided the founding fathers with words which today have much more relevance then at that time when he, in Gitanjali, penned them down more than a century ago:

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;

Where knowledge is free;

Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls;

Where words come out from the depth of truth;

Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection;

Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit;

Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought and action

Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

Is anyone listening?

(Gurrinder [Indi] Khanna)
Rivaz 1959-69

Remembering – by Vivek Bhasin

R E M E M B E R…
the day I clambered on the Kalka Mail aged five.

Mr Das Gupta was the Calcutta party escort..

..the train chugged in to Kalka and it was bitter cold the 1st of March 59 years ago..

We changed to the hill train and chug-chugged up through 103 tunnels..

The Bus was waiting at Simla Railway Station to take us to BCS…

.. I drifted up to Linlithgow..

Grew up day by day and year by year and seasons through reasons and grime and grind and tears and pain and laughter and screams through blinding rain …

…then like yesterday as it all started I was gone away into a far away world ..

Now as I remember.. do you remember?

Our pocket money days,
the walk to Chipu’s..
Inspection as we showed our nails and polished shoes that hid my holes in steel grey stockings ..

It was cold in the dorms..
the roofs were drummed by hail on metal sheets as we hunkered down
for sunrise..

We strolled along the corridors
stopping at the Box Room to get our weekly change,
Lefroy I was..
The worn out bottoms of my trousers were criss crossed by Choru…
never once believed did he
that man walked on the moon…

..the benches well placed to look down on to the second flat.
The War Memorial that chimes on the hour..
Mr Chaprasi walking to the bell and striking it fast and hard
though Chapel was a slow deliberate gong pushing you in to pray..
Mr Bugler shooting his notes across to Tara Devi as the School Flag was lowered..
..the sun had set and a shiver of cold as darkness descended…
at least those days we were far away..
away from the madding crowd; they say not today.

The stadium was symmetrical, as the opening batsmen descended ..
..our hearts in our mouth.

If you and I were the wind that could seep through the cracks of window panes and key holes we would enter our sacred school… you could go past Bursar’s house to the left past the chestnut tree on the right…

Would you sneak up to the Linlithgow dorms where Mrs Goss was the Maitron.. Wishing her Good Morning would you bound down the stone steps and leap up to the Irwin Hall doors taking the left and I right…?

We would enter and see those beautiful chairs with brass plaques of those Cottonians now past and gone.. the stage with dark blue heavy velvet drapes as you look around and see oils of past Masters we see in awe..

Below dinner is prepared in the kitchen under Bull Dog’s supervision, he was sluggishly determinedly sad and hence his name …and the Dining Hall in great regality, the last Cricket XI is painted on the boards ..the High Table at lunch had Von Goldstein Esq; in attendance never absent; his suits from Saville Row was he impeccably immaculate… and that handsome; living a singled out life to serve…he surely missed a woman his lady ..

The dorms were for us lads as you and I creep up.. the bogs to the left as I head for Curzon Lefroy and The Andersen; you have the bogs to the right as you head for ibbetson and Rivaz whose windows overlook the combined Basket Ball and Tennis Courts…below lies the Hos-p where I lay with chicken pox and a fractured foot .. and Sister Seager where Doc Butcher Mukund Lal arrived and cracked your hand with a quick snap best not to complain to that sadistic subtle shaitaan or was he a Samaritan in Wolf’s clothing just to make us wet our pants?

Our class rooms were simple with blackboards and chalk and the fountain out of bounds ; privileged for the Sixth Formers..

Head Master’s Lodge beyond England’s scope no not even Eaton nor Harrow nor Marlborough… what with beautiful garden as he walked his Cocker Spaniel peering below the Swimming Pool and the weeping willow. While across were the Chem and Biology Labs with a complete skeleton and snakes in vinegar…

Amongst the Champion Heavy Weights of the world, the Boxing Season was both harsh brutal but mind and soul forming… My Butterfly weight I won floating and dancing around the ring..
But for those days the Gym was “ Very In”..

Past the slope of Jackal’s Paradise we see the Third and the roof tops of Remove..

There even was the Fourth Flat and then beyond green fields and nothingness… just peace and quiet and not a soul except shepherds and local belles cutting grass..
we flew paper planes ..
If only then the pillars had seen a vision and purchased outright down to the Valley and across to Tara Devi gap…if only.

Let’s get back as the winds of time and leave that wonderful space sublime…

… today we stare out of windows as the entire world stands quietly still…

It’s 🐣 Easter… today is Sunday .. Easter Sunday…
R E S U R R E C T I O N …

The call to pray…
Our Chapel
Quiet. Firm. There.
Always There.

I think of you, of all of us…

A part of my heart
will always beat for you ..

Vivek Bhasin
Lefroy 1961-1970