City loses a public-spirited entrepreneur
By Our Staff Reporter
Dehradun, 30 Aug: In the death of Chela Ram Sawhney, Dehradun has lost a public-spirited entrepreneur. He was afflicted with multiple diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, etc., and finally succumbed to chronic kidney problems on 26 August.
Born in the tea garden city of Shinkiari in the Mansehra district of the North-West Frontier Province in undivided India, he was eldest of four siblings. When his family, headed by father Hukum Chand, had to emigrate to India in the wake of the August 1947 Partition, it fortuitously chose Dehradun – a city with tea gardens like the one it had left behind.
Having lived through the migration of the turbulent post-partition years, Chela Ram had become a natural leader and father figure to his siblings and sundry cousins. By dint of sheer hard work and dedication, Chela Ram set up a flourishing business in timber trading.
Not just being satisfied with the success of his business, he started taking interest in social welfare and community service organisations like the Lions Club, of which he was both a treasurer and president, successively. However, his most durable contribution was as the chief mentor of Swargpuri Ashram Trust in the Race Course area of which he, too, was president, treasurer at different times. In no time, Swargpuri Ashram had become a much sought after venue for spiritual and religious gatherings. He also provided support to the Gandhi Shatabdi Eye Hospital in Dalanwala. He was also a life member of the Doon Citizens’ Council.
He leaves behind his devoted wife Sharda of 59 years, daughters Sangeeta Anand, an educationist, Nidhi Medard, a Data Scientist working at SAP headquarters in Germany, and son Dr Munish. His Uthala on 28 August was well attended.