PHILLAUR: Some 14 years ago, during his historic visit to Pakistan in his previous stint as Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh had received an unusual but attractive gift from his counterpart in Pakistan Punjab. It was a mighty horse, named Sultan (the powerful).
Unfortunately, the animal, who had to be quarantined on his arrival in India, did not live long. However, the bond that Amarinder had developed with then Pakistan Punjab Chief Minister Pervaiz Elahi,
during his visit to the neighbouring country in 2004, had survived longer than Sultan did. And so Elahi,
evidently unhappy that his gift to Amarinder had not lasted long, decided to replace it with another horse.
Amarinder immediately fell in love with Sunny Kid, as this one was called, and gave it to the care of the Punjab Police Academy (PPA).
On Wednesday, when Amarinder visited the PPA here for the Passing out Parade and Investiture Ceremony, he made it a point to meet Sunny Kid, whom he still fondly remembered, down to the fact that the horse had hurt himself in the leg all those years ago.
In fact, Amarinder inquired about Sunny Kid the moment he reached PPA this morning, asking the officers about his health and upkeep. He showed interest in meeting Sunny Kid, which the officers quickly arranged.
The meeting turned out to be a nostalgic one for the Chief Minister, who seemed to be genuinely interested in the horse’s well-being and happy at the long overdue reunion, albeit a brief one!
Amarinder announced an annual grant of Rs. 2 Crores for advanced training of police personnel of all ranks, from constables to PPS officers, in the best domestic and foreign training centers, in order to empower them to meet the challenges of modern policing.
Addressing a batch of new recruits of 18 Deputy SPs and 494 SIs – the largest ever group of directly recruited officials in these ranks of the Punjab Police, the Chief Minister expressed great pleasure at seeing a large number of women (196 in all, including seven Deputy SPs) among the probationers.
On a nostalgic note, the Chief Minister recalled that his father had passed out from the same academy nearly a 100 years ago, while the parade had also revived memories of his own training at the NDA
back in 1963.