[Here’s what I wrote on 31st October 2015 and I’m reproducing it here – http://sangayw.blogspot.com/2015/10/the-great-fourth.html]
What A man can do? How can A man achieve the impossible? How can A man be architect of a nation? How can A man put his own life for the nation’s sovereignty? And many more ! All the un-answered questions are what defines The Great Fourth, His Majesty the King Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the fourth king of Bhutan.
November 11, 1955, a boy destined to rule Druk-yul, the land of Thunder Dragon was born to His Majesty the third king of Bhutan Jigme Dorji Wangchuck and Her Majesty Ashi Kesang Choden Wangchuck. A boy, upon whom the responsibility of guiding his people and developmental activities of the nation fell upon his shoulder at the tender age of 17, when His Majesty the third king passed away. Seventeen! At that age, I didn’t even know what was good for me and what was not, let alone differentiating the two for the nation, but the young Prince did – Amazing! An IMPOSSIBLE was achieved.
When the young Prince inherited the country, the country didn’t see much of the infrastructural development – I would rather say, there were not much of the developmental processes. Forget the air transport, only few pockets of the country were connected by motor-able roads. Economically a poor nation but culturally a rich nation was inherited. The young Prince initiated many developmental activities in the nation – hydro-power plant was built to boost the local economy; agricultural activities were encouraged for self-sufficiency; motor-able roads were built for easy access; free health care and education facilities were provided; gifted democracy to his people; instituted the constitution; and an internationally appreciated developmental philosophy of Gross National Happiness was instituted. His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo crafted the nation and showed to the world, ‘what A man can achieve’.
When the nation’s sovereignty was at stake, His Majesty himself lead the nation’s arm forces to flush out the militants. I didn’t read anywhere of a leader of the nation leading the war and putting his own life at risk for the sovereignty of the nation. A true Leader!
His compassionate nature, love for his nation and people, the way he crafted his nation, gifting democracy to his subjects, experiencing the life of an ordinary Bhutanese whenever he visited his subjects, living by example and leading a simple life – The Great Fourth was born and loved by his subjects. It is difficult to believe, the kindness and love the Great Fourth has for his subject and the nation.
The Great Fourth, known to the young ones as the source of inspiration and a person who seem to have answers to all the queries one has in mind. The Great Fourth known to the older flocks as a true son of the Druk-yul, who makes no mistake in designing the country. The Great Fourth known to the world as a true leader. The Great Fourth, made the country economically sound not compromising the environment and the culture. Who on the earth would have known how to balance these components?
As one of his humble subjects, I could only pray that The Great Fourth live longer; I could only pray to have strengths to change myself to present The Great Fourth with the nation he wanted to see; I could only pray that The Great Fourth be always protected by our protective deity.
Palden Drukpa – Gyal – Lo!!!