Monday, May 11, 2009

Amritsar Bids tearful adieu to Bimla Dang

by Rashmi Talwar In the industrial township of Chheharta, every eye was moist at the demise of the Mother of this township--Veteran CPI leader and former MLA Bimla Dang. Bimla Wife of Satya Pal Dang, also a veteran CPI leader, died at a private hospital after a brief illness. She was 83.
The Dang couple, after their wedding in 1952, had decided not to have a child as they did not want any diversion from contributing to lead the people’s struggle and their welfare. Not once did Vimla Dang repent, instead, she poured affection on orphans.
Bimla an Alumni of Kinnard College, Lahore was awarded Padma Shri in 1998 for her contribution to the social welfare, Bimla, and Satya pal together fought many relentless battles for the cause of the downtrodden.
The Dang couple stood up to the terrorists as well. Even noted columnist Khushwant Singh paid tribute: “Satya Pal Dang and his wife Vimla Dang, nee Bakaya (sub-caste), lived in Chheharta, a suburban township near Amritsar, in the heat of the terrorism let loose by Bhindranwale supporters and protagonists of Khalistan. Not only did the Dangs refuse to seek sanctuary elsewhere, they made Chheharta an island of peace when most the state was in turmoil.” They took a principled stand against militancy in Punjab. She remained president of the Punjab Istri Sabha and took up the cause of women’s emancipation and 33 per cent reservation for women. She belonged to a Kashmiri Pandit family and graduated from Kinnard College for Women, Lahore, before shifting to Mumbai after Partition. She got married to Satya Pal in 1952 in Mumbai after she returned from Prague, where she represented India in the International Union of Students. After marriage, the couple shifted to Chheharta. They decided not to have a child as they did not want to divert their attention from people’s struggle. Though the couple led “underground” life during the British rule and both were entitled to Freedom Fighters’ Pension, they never claimed the same till date. The couple retired from the National Council of the CPI and decided not to contest the assembly elections with the plea that there must be an age limit for holding a political office. The contribution of Vimla in the social field was rated unparalleled as she had raised huge funds during the Bengal famine in 1945 and visited affected families. Dr Joginder Dyal said she was a woman with great conviction and fought for the downtrodden till the end of her life. In the 1965 war with Pakistan, Chheharta was heavily bombed on last day before the ceasefire. And Vimla Dang, recall old-timers, stood amidst the shambles in Chheharta Bazar to collect funds to cremate the bodies.
Supporters and senior Communist and local leaders reached the house of the Dang couple to pay homage to the departed leader. She was cremated in the Naraingarh crematorium. The pyre was lit by Anil Dang, a nephew of Satya Pal Dang. National general secretary, CPI, AB Bardhan, Dr Joginder Dayal, national executive member, CPI, Bhupinder Sambhar, state secretary, Mangat Ram Pasla, state secretary, CPM, Congress and BJP candidates for the Amritsar Lok Sabha constituency Om Parkash Soni and Navjot Singh Sidhu, respectively, and other senior Communist leaders attended the cremation.


  1. Really love your articles...
    Are you from Amritsar?

    Would you like to share any article at

    Good Luck

  2. Yes , ....Plz could you introduce yourself

  3. That is sad to read..I remember seeing her often during the seveties and eighties,always leading some rally...
    Are you by any chance from Sacred Heart School?

  4. yes it is true that she was a great woman ...and yes i am from sacred heart school ....and u ???/

  5. Online Bus Ticket booking. Amritsar is also known for the incidents of Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in 1919. Amritsar is home to the Harmandir Sahib, also known as the Golden Temple, the spiritual and cultural center of the Sikh religion.

  6. She was really a great lady...a brave fighter...!