Plessislaer classmates get together after 56 years

2012-07-23 00:00

FIFTY-six years after attending class one together at the Sutherlands Government-aided Indian School in Plessislaer, 14 former classmates and two of their teachers got together on Saturday to reminisce about their first year of school.

The school closed down in the mid-1960s as a result of the Group Areas Act. The reunion was the idea of former pupil Brian Rajoo, who now lives in Tzaneen.

Rajoo contacted his friend and former classmate, Dev Pillay, of Bishopstowe, who helped him to get in touch with their fellow pupils of class one in 1956.

“I think the reason that got me thinking about it was that so many of the friends I once knew have passed away due to accidents or illness. It wasn’t easy tracking the people down, even though most of them still live in Pietermaritzburg,” Rajoo told The Witness on Saturday.

Most members of the group that gathered for a leisurely braai in the sunny countryside had not seen each other for at least 50 years.

Rajoo said the occasion turned out to be exactly what he had hoped. “It has brought back so many memories … It was a good time for me,” he said.

Rajoo’s brother, Gonum Raju, who has emigrated to Canada, also joined the festivities.

Present at the reunion were:

Dev Pillay, Brian Rajoo, Soomchand Baboolal, Rajbunsi Nunkan, Parker Chandaka, Krish Pachuwah,

Munishwar Bob Maharaj, Lionel Naidoo, Poorun Ramdhaw, Shakuntala Beekram (then the only girl in the class), Ravin Maharaj, Pramod Ramburran, Mothilall Sewcharan, Kemraj Budram, and former teachers Krish “Ole” Moodley and Chan Rajkoomar.

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