For all those youngsters settled abroad, February is the time of the year to remember the days spent in the open lush-green Rose Garden. I remember spending afternoons going over from one stall to another, making children participate in various competitions, and then wait for the prizes.
February 24-26 would be the time again for the blooming varied-hued roses to welcome hordes of tourists and people from the city and surrounding areas to enjoy the 'mela'.
There is an official estimate of over 3 lakh footfalls at the Rose Festival.
Do you know Rose Garden spread in a sprawling 30 acres campus in the middle of Chandigarh, is probably the largest in Asia, having 40,000 varieties of rose plants of over 800 rose species from all over the world.
Spread in 30 acres, Rose Garden was conceived by the visionary bureaucrat, Mr. M.S. Randhawa, who was the first chief commissioner of the city, whose contribution is unparalleled in giving this city a unique character of the garden city.
The Rose Garden has been divided into 10 sections. These sections are not only for roses but also for a children's play area, scrubs, medicinal plants, a hillock and musical fountains.
Some of the roses at the garden have been named after international and other personalities - from Britain's Queen Elizabeth and former US president John F. Kennedy to former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and M.S. Randhawa.