“Be sure to lay wide streets planted with shady trees, every other of a quick growing variety. Be sure that there is plenty of space for lawns and gardens. Reserve large areas for football, hockey and parks. Earmark areas for Hindu temples, Mohammedan mosques and Christian churches.”
Those were the words of Jamshetji Nusserwanji Tata –one of the most successful industrialists of his time, who founded the Tata group of companies –as he envisioned the city of his dreams. He hailed from a Parsi Zoroastrian family and as a visionary, J.N.Tata during the precarious time of the British raj, believed that freedom could only be maintained through large scale industrialization and economic stability. However his compassionate nature and love for humanity drove him to picture a city abundant in greenery, pulsing with life and bereft of negativity.
Unfortunately this dream could not materialize during his life time but in the coming years a township emerged and was lovingly nurtured following closely along the lines that J.N.Tata had put forth. This small city, that a lot of us might be ignorant of, is situated in the lap of the dalma hills, namely Jamshedpur. This peaceful township was initially brought into being by the Tatas after which, in 2004, its maintenance was handed over to JUSCO, a Tata subsidiary.
Marked by avenues on either side of the road, Jamshedpur, inspite of being an industrial town is also one of the greenest towns in existence. One of the biggest attractions of the Steel City, is ironically, the Jubilee Park, which is a sprawling park over an expanse of 225 acres of land festooned with flowers and fountains all the way through. It also harbours a rose garden which blooms in all its revealing sensuality, seasonally. Across the park is an awe inspiring statue of the founder himself in whose memory the citizens of Jamshedpur decorate the town during the first week of March which is the birth month of J.N. Tata. The park is flooded with lights during this time and the city of Jamshedpur is a sight to soothe sore eyes!
The aesthetically appealing city combines a healthy mind with a healthy body. Numerous illustrious schools like Loyola which accommodates the largest auditorium in Jamshedpur with a capacity to seat 1,578 people and prestigious schools like Convent, Rajendra Vidyalaya, DBMS,etc leave no room for ignorance in the educational department and provide a solid structure for the children of tomorrow. At the same time sports and physical fitness is not neglected owing to the presence of Keenan stadium and JRD stadium, the latter being named after Jehangir Ratanji Dadabhoy Tata. It boasts of various courts, an inviting swimming pool as well as provisions for rock climbing. The huge stadium is a site where most schools hold their sports days and both the stadiums are capable of hosting all important and celebrated events with immense vigour.
The serenity and harmony with which, the people from diverse groups live, is also something that the people of Jamshedpur are proud of. The myriad religious groups observe their respective occasions and give way to the cosmopolitan culture that enshrines the city itself. Thus the words of the founder were carefully sculpted into the reality and physical presence that we see today.
The pristine city, therefore, encrusted within the winding rivers of Subarnarekha and Kharkhai on its north and west side, though small, is one that echoes every word of the founder. The beauty of this place lies not in its materialistic pleasures but in its spirit that defines the very essence of a tranquil mind. Every now and then the township lights up to celebrate the occasions of the many communities it harbours and then again slips into the peaceful slumber that its people are accustomed to. To those living in this city, the place acquires a special part in their hearts knowing that the words of the founder have breathed life into it and though it might be very different from a metro city, its quintessence lies in the fact that amidst all the usual chaos of life, the people living in this city, find aplomb.
Oindrila Gupta is a student of Delhi University with a passion for Literature and her hobbies include music and dance. Apart from this, she is also a voracious reader and hopes to establish a career as an editor some day. Meanwhile she finds joy in little things and strives to make an impact through her writings in order to touch whatever lives she can.