Dudley Maharaj was born in Pietermaritzburg in 1936 and recently turned 85 years of age. He attended the St Anthony’s School in Retief Street and completed his secondary education at the old Woodlands Secondary School in Chota Motala Road (now the Forest High School).
After he matriculated, he attended the Springfield Training College of Education for Indians in Durban before he qualified as a teacher. During 1958 he married his dear wife who was also an educator. He taught at the Fountain Head School in Umkomaas and Louisiana School in Port Shepstone from 1959 to 1960. Dudley then quit the chalkboard to serve in the SA Police in its efforts to prevent and investigate crime.
Dudley joined the South African Police in April 1961 and served at Pietermaritzburg Central (Loop Street) until he was called up for police basic training at the SA Police, Indian Training Depot in Wentworth. While at the Police Training Depot he encountered two prominent brothers namely A G Vurdan and G V Govender (both deceased), all former stalwarts of Mountain Rise. He was one of the first Indians in the 1960s who joined the SA Police with a teaching qualification.
After completing his police basic training, he was reposted to Pietermaritzburg Central where he served until his promotion to the rank of second-class sergeant after which he was transferred to Plessislaer. After successfully completing the sergeant's examination, he was promoted and transferred to the Child Protection Unit, thereafter to Mountain Rise where he served for a number of years. He was respected among the Indian community and was affectionately known as “Station Commander Maharaj”. He was always neatly dressed in uniform, carried himself well and is eloquent in the English language. He was considered a senior among those that worked alongside him. Dudley Maharaj was respected by police members and civilians alike when off duty and punctual. He was considered a strict disciplinarian. Maharaj was transferred back to Plessislaer where he retired on 28 March 1993, with 32 years of meritorious and loyal service.
Recently Logan Govender and Brigadier Bala Naidoo visited Dudley Maharaj at his home. On behalf of the retired police members of Pietermaritzburg and Durban, we acknowledge and thank you for your unstinted service towards the SA Police and its various communities. You have served well. We respect and salute you.
Retired police members of Pietermaritzburg and Durban