Tribune News Service
Amritsar, April 7
“For the past many years, I have been shuffling around the activities of my school and in Janvadi Lekhak Sangh programmes. This lockdown has come as a blessing in disguise for me, as I have found time for my hobbies,” says Dev Dard, managing director of a private school in Islamabad area, who is also a noted Punjabi author.
He is a numismatist and has an innumerable collection of coins. He is an ardent lover of cacti plants and an antique collector as well.
“I was hardly finding time for my hobbies as various activities in my school and programmes of the organisation kept me busy. Besides, I am also a part of a programme for a Canada-based Radio — Punjabi Duniya, based on history and heritage, that demands a lot of research,” he said.
Dard has six galleries of historic coins, antiques and hand-written manuscripts on the school premises apart from a few in the house.
“In the past two weeks, I have categorised the coins as per their period, including Mughal era, Durrani dynasty, Sikh period,” he said, adding that he also cleaned and maintained the antique galleries.
He claims he has a collection of lakhs of coins, which is apparently one of the largest in the country. Besides, he also has a proud collection of Tad Patra (hand-written) manuscripts, which he claimed is the largest in the northern part of the country. He also has a collection of Indian Folk Art such as nakkashi or metal embossing.
“The period also gave me time for my cacti collection. I had a collection of around 1,000 cacti, which has sadly reduced to only around 400. I wish to maintain the same. During the period, I did grafting of cacti plants, which gave me immense satisfaction,” he pointed out.
“Of course I also spent time with my family, which was missing in the recent past. I wake up around 4am and it allows me to spend enough time with my family,” he said.
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