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Thursday, October 16, 2014

India WI ODI series resumes at Dharamsala

“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” – is one of the quotes of a Crusader considered by many as ‘apostle of peace’.

Cricket pundits were dismissive of the present touring team – it ace spinner  Sunil Narine was forced out of the squad, no Chris Gayle, it had lost both its practice games – it is India at home – opposition could be pulverised – one thought ! – but now the Series is  locked 1-1, and India is shaky.   With  cyclone hudhud  forcing the third ODI to be cancelled, and off-field issues surrounding the West Indies team pushing the actual cricket into the background, it feels that sports action occurred long ago.

The name would literally translate into  'spiritual dwelling' or ‘place of justice’ – this ground made its debut only last year amid fears that snow would ruin the game.  England's seamers moved the ball around prodigiously and India lost the match.  It is Cricket on top as the venue is located in the foothills of the Himalayas, 1317 metres above sea level.  It is Dharamsala - a city and a municipal council in Kangra district in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. It is the district headquarters. It was formerly known as Bhagsu. The Dalai Lama's residence in McLeodGanj and the headquarters of Central Tibetan Administration, (the Tibetan government in exile) are in Dharamshala.

In 1905, the Kangra valley suffered a major earthquake. On April 4 of that year, the earth shook, demolishing much of the cantonment and the neighbouring city of Kangra, Himachal Pradesh as well as the Bhagsunag temple. The Gurkhas rebuilt the town along with the temple, which today is acknowledged as the 1st Gurkha Rifles' heritage. The British had planned to make Dharamshala the summer capital of India, but moved to Shimla after the disaster. Not only did the Gurkhas of Dharmshala make a major contribution to India's defence, many were freedom fighters for the Indian National Army, which had been founded by Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. The Indian National Army Captain Ram Singh Thakur, a Gurkha from the village of Khanyara, composed some of India's most popular and stirring patriotic songs, including "Kadam Kadam Badaye Ja".

The Tibetan settlement of Dharamshala began in 1959, when His Holiness the Dalai Lama had to flee Tibet and the Prime Minister of India allowed him and his followers to settle in McLeodGanj (in Upper Dharmshala), a former colonial British summer picnic spot. There they established the "government-in-exile" in 1960. Several thousand Tibetan exiles have now settled in the area. The 14th Dalai Lama (religious name: Tenzin Gyatso) , the head monk of the Gelug school,  lives here. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 – it is his golden words that you read at the start. 

IPL matches were played here and in Apr 2010, in a crucial match winning which only would pave way for CSK’s entry – 16 were required off the last over. MS Dhoni was on strike – Irfan Pathan was the bowler – it was 4, 2,  6 miles over long on and another huge six ….. match won with 2 balls to spare and Dhoni had taken CSK towards finals.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
16th Oct 2014.

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