Editor's note: In February 2018, the Friday Times published an article on the cafes in Faisalabad, which used to be called Lyallpur before Pakistan was formed. The article states: "One is not aware where the intellectuals of the city used to meet before Partition ...". This came up as a response.
In 1947 the only hotel of some note was the Grand Hotel that produced unsliced bread. They also had a hand slicing machine attached to the table. The only other heavenly product, at least for me, was cream cone, that to this day remains unmatched.
We knew the owner of Grand Hotel. His wife was English and a doctor. They lived in a Government Bungalow next to Coronation Library, opposite to the Ladies Garden.
I don't remember if they stayed on after Partition or not. .
There was another nondescript Union Hotel with hardly any guests. The only notable thing about it was that one of the owners was a National Hockey player.
In 1952 the Pakistani team visited Ludhiana, where we had shifted to after Partition, for a friendly match. At that time, I ran a photo studio. The Pakistani team visited me and took the opportunity to get a group photograph. As a fellow Lyallpuri, they didn't offer to pay. No matter - it was great to have them.
There was another National Hockey Player by the name of DB Lal who had a book shop in Aminpur Bazar.
Now here is a question for Jatinder Ji. Do you remember the Union Hotel on Ketcherry road? It was next to the famous bicycle shop. After World War II, the new bicycles appeared on the market. The brands were much in demand and I persuaded my respected Bhaiaji that I wanted a Raleigh bicycle then costing then Rs. 80/- The brand was BSA.
© Sangat Singh 2018
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