The gate wide opens to the sight of a majestic Bungalow at Clement Town and you get a warm welcome by a man in his 50s. Age doesn’t seem to be catching up with this man named Dr S Farooq, who with his quintessential smile, elegance and humility draws respect and love from his guests. What matters to him is the person who has come to meet him and how better he can be of help to him. Among the scores of people who come to meet Dr Farooq are his students, who look up to him for support and guidance. “I have inherited benevolence from my father and passion for helping people by virtue of my profession,” says Dr Farooq, who besides being a guide to his students doing higher studies in Phytochemistry is also the President of Dehradun based Himalayan Drug Company.Dr Farooq is not only known as a diplomat, industrialist and social activist but his sprawling and magnificent residence at Clement Town houses a unique collection of Vintage Cars dating as back as 1926 and Motor Cycles dating as back as 1942. He says that it gives me a sense of pride, when I see a car once owned by Late Subhash Chandra Bose’s colleague and fellow Indian Civil Services Officer A M Jha, parked in the courtyard of my bungalow. “It is a Plymouth model of 1954, which costed me Rs 80, 000. I also have a Austin car dating as back as 1930, which costed me Rs. 5, 000,” says Dr Farooq. He further adds that I have a collection of 15 such cars and five motorcycles dating as back as 1942.
Hailing from a middle class family, Dr Farooq did his schooling from Cambrin Hall and later at St. Thomas School in Dehradun. “I was overjoyed to know when I was once invited in my school as a chief guest in one of the occasions,” recounts Dr Farooq.
Taking pride in owning the first commercial vehicle with the name Hindustan, Dr Farooq says, “I nurtured the dream of owning a personal car since my school days. Fortunately, I could buy it in Rs 1200 in the year 1972, when I was just 14 years old.” His unique collection also includes rare collection of fossils of animals and plant herbariums. Having the credit of being the first and only person for being awarded Doctor of Science for his exemplary work in Phytochemistry from H.N.B Garhwal University, Dr Farooq finds thrill in horse riding and polo, which is conspicuous by the well maintained horse stable and a sprawling polo field just behind his bungalow. “I treat my horses as my friends and I am emotionally attached to them,” says an elated Dr Farooq. He further goes on to explain that many of these horses are a Through bred of British and Arabian decent.
Dr Farooq has also penned a biography of his father, whom he fondly remembers as Abba Jaani in Urdu titled ‘Aap Yaad Aaten Hain’, which has a vivid account of his childhood days and his family house at Nayanagar in Dehradun.
Shardul Nautiyal (firstname.lastname@example.org)