A day in the life of a garbage van driver

Satnam rose early. He was having his bath in the mori.( A concocted version of a small bathroom in a chawl).His three year old son was in deep sleep well covered with blankets at one corner of his single room living space.The December winter was cold. His wife was busy preparing his breakfast, tiffin for lunch and his morning tea. As he toweled himself dry his eyes shifted back to his only child. It was his sons birthday today. His mind was contemplating on what gifts to buy the child today.

Satnam was a driver at the garbage collection company. His shift started at 7.00 am and got over at 3.00 pm. His schooling was only upto tenth standard . His parents were farmers with small land holdings who had to work in others fields in their village to keep the embers of the chulla burning. They were five siblings, life was hard and poverty ridden. Satnam had left his village after his tenth standard for the city where he worked as a cart puller, then learnt to drive and got temporary ,poorly paid jobs as a driver . He was miserly in his spendings as he needed to save money to send some every month back home. His parents got him married and inspite of his initial reluctance he was happy. In a years time his wife gave birth to a son. This boy was a lucky charm for Satnam. He got the job with the garbage collection company the month his son was born. Now he was happy, unlike his previous jobs the company paid better. Now he could spare more money again to send to his parents and siblings back home.

Satnam was now ready in his uniform, his wife placed the plate of chapatis and cauliflower curry on the floor. He sat down cross legged and had his breakfast in a hurry. She pushed his cup of black tea towards him which to he gulped. He got up, bent over, kissed the child on his forehead, picked up the bag containing his tiffin , put on his identity card and rushed out, his hands waving a bye to his wife . It was 6.30 am. He had a bus to take to reach the garbage companies parking lot.

He got on to the bus , it was on time and there were hardly any passengers. He took a seat and as the bus went along, his thoughts wandered back to his sons birthday. He would buy him a couple of dresses , a , a toy car some chocolates and a small cake. He had kept aside money for all of this .

The bus reached his parking lot. Satnam got off the bus and walked into the parking lot. He went straight to the biometric rooms and pressed his thumb onto the machine. 6.50 am. He was early as usual. The parking lot was buzzing with drivers and attendants coming in, getting their biometrics and taking out their garbage vehicles. The place really reeked of stench, wafts of the cold air carried the stench all around. With over 300 garbage vehicles including compacters parked here , it was not surprising.

The parking lot

Satnam took the keys to his garbage van and started the vehicle waiting for his attendant to arrive. She came soon, Surekha was in her thirties and a widow. She was the attendent on his van. She hopped in pulled shut the door and the van slowly moved out of the parking lot.

Garbage van

Satnam knew his route well . Route number 3, a total of five trips, approximately 500 houses per trip. So he was collecting garbage of over 2500 households daily. The route was a mixture of bungalows and societies. The stench of yesterday’s garbage, though the van was washed after work daily still lingered in the air. As the van moved in the cool morning winter the smell was more obvious. Three years of working with garbage van had blunted Satnam’s olfactory senses. As the van stopped along the routes people came and emptied their garbage dry and wet into the separate compartments. The atentend Surekha got down to help them. When the van would be full she would press down the garbage with a long stick. Satnam too at times got down to help. As the van filled up the stench too would at times become unbearable . He had no choice , the pay was good, he could feed his family, he could dream of a good future for his child. He was happy , he had no regrets.

His first trip was complete , 500 households had emptied their garbage into the van, he slowly maneuvered the van towards the secondary collection centre a couple of kilometres away. When he reached there he positioned his van, and tipped all the garbage first wet and then dry into the respective bins. It was nearing 8.30 am. He drove towards his second trip start point of his route. On the way he stopped at a handcart selling tea. Surekha and Satnam both had tea, which now was their daily routine. He took a glass of water washed his hands dug them into his pant pockets , took out a pouch of tobacco , put some onto his left palm, took some lime from a small plastic packet and rubbed it vigorously with his right index finger. Then he gently patted the mixture in his left palm with his right and took a pinch of it out placed it into his mouth behind his lips. He patted his hands and ushered Surekha into the van, got onto his seat and whoosh he was on his second trip for the day.

Garbage vans outside societies

This trip too covered around 500 households. At times there were arguments with the citizens who wouldn’t segregate the garbage. Some hurled the choicest abuses at him and the attendant. They never uttered a word, just accepted it as a part of their duties. This trip had many societies and hence it got over faster . Again he drove back to the secondary centre to empty the van. The bins at the center was now brimming with garbage. The smell was worse ,it was in fact nauseating. After having emptied it he drove back to the next point to start his third trip for the day. It was 9.15 am.

The sun was out and it was quite warm. Satnam was feeling heat and was sweating, his clothes felt sticky, the stench in the driver cabin was getting worse. He lit an incense stick to mask the stench and kept going. This trip covered mainly small societies , it took time as the housekeeping staff took their own sweet time to empty the garbage into the van. He was thirsty. He pulled ot the bottle of water kept in his cabin took a couple of gulps and passed it on to the atentend , she too was thirsty. Society after society he drove to collect garbage. At one society a kind lady offered them some tea. Some residents were rude, some chatted with him, others have him dirty looks, he didn’t bother to mind all of this . His hands now felt greasy, his face was full of perspiration. This trip was taking a lot of time, he had two more trips to go. Ultimately after 2 hours the trip was done and he was back to the secondary yard to empty his van. Rag pickers had gathered there and were rummaging through the garbage for recyclables that would fetch them money. He was happy that he was better off than them. It was now 12.25 noon when he started he penultimate trip.

This trip covered a few slums and chawls. The stops were more and frequent. The incense stick had burnt out. The stench returned. The attendant too was sweating. Her overcoat was full of garbage stains, her gloves smelled as she sat on the helpers seat in the two seat cabin . By the time he completed this trip it was 1.30pm. He emptied the van and drove out to a tree nearby. Already two more vans had reached there.

He got off the van, took the 5 litre can of water in the van. He washed his hands clean. The attendant too removed her gloves and washed her hands clean. The drivers and attendants of the other two vans too had washed their hands. One of them pulled out a large plastic sheet from above one vans cabin and laid it on the ground. They all sat cross legged on the sheet and placed their tiffin boxes. They shared the curries they had. All of them started having their lunch happily. Inspite of their job profile there was camaraderie, each asked the other if they needed more of anything. In the shade of the tree under gods lovely blue sky they had their meals and were contended. Satnam pulled out his pouch of tobaco and rubbed it with lime before placing it in his mouth. He sat there a while and then got back to his van as did the others. The last trip of the day was due. It was 2.00pm.

The last trip was cool, the small societies of small row houses. His legs were itching from the grime and sweat. He looked to his feet as he drove, his chappals were worn out and needed replacement. He would do that today . This trip got over in 45 minutes and he was back at the secondary yard, after emptying his van there he returned back to the parking lot. Dot 3.00 pm.

Here he parked his vehicle submitted the keys to the supervisor and went to the biometric room. Later he went over the water taps and washed his hands , feet and face with the soap available there . He checked his pocket for the money he was carrying to buy the birthday gifts for his son. As he walked towards the exit gate the supervisor asked him why he was in a hurry today , he shot back ‘ it’s my son’s birthday’. The kind supervisor took out his purse and handed a hundred rupe note to Satnam. Buy him sweets from my side he said . Satnam was reluctant, but the supervisor insisted. He took the money and thanking him walked towards the bus stop.

Satnam got into the bus , took a ticket for the market, disembarked and started window shopping . After around 30 minutes he entered a cloth store and asked to see clothes for a three year old. The salesman was’nt very cooperative. Satnam’s uniform was dirty and the smell of garbage was undeniable. Satnam too could realise the reason for the sales mans indifferent attitude. He chose two pairs of shirts and pants for the child, paid for it and walked out. Next he went to the bakery bought a small nicely decorated cake. Got the words Happy birthday. Aditya, written on it, he smiled within, he was happy. He also bought some cadbury bars. Then he walked into the small shoe store and bought himself a pair of chappals. His eyes fell on a beautiful pair of ladies sandals and after bargaining the price , he bought one for his wife. He still had some money to spare.

Cadbury…Happy birthday, Aditya

He was now carrying quite some bags. He took the next bus home. It was 6.00 pm when he reached home. His wife was cooking. His son was playing with his toys. Oh! He had forgotten to buy him a toy. He kept the bags in the room and walked briskly to the toys shop nearby. He bought a remote controlled car. It was not cheap , the money he had wouldn’t suffice . He promised the shopkeeper that he would pay him later , the shopkeeper knowing him agreed. He handed over a kit kat bar and said, this us for your son , keep it.

Satnam now empty pocketed walked back briskly home. He kept the toy on the shelf and removed his clothes and went on to have a bath. He soaped himself vigorously. The Santoor bath bar was good, nice sweet smell . It took out all the stench of garbage. He emptied two full buckets of water on his body. Now he was fresh, he put on a kurta and pants . He pulled his son towards him, opened the toy box and the car. Aditya was thrilled, happy birthday..Satnam whispered , his wife smiled even as she was making those sweet puran poli’s Soon she was done with her cooking. She too freshened up. Then both of them dressed the little boy in new clothes. The mother took a clean steel plate, placed some haldi, kum kum and flowers on it. Then she lit a small oil lamp and placed it on the plate. They took Aditya plate in hand and prayed to god , she moved the plate in circles around Aditya praying for his wellness and good health and warding off evil spirits. Then they placed the cake on a small stool and let Aditya cut his birthday cake as they clapped and sang for him. Satnam took both of them close to him and clicked multiple selfies of the three of them with the cake.

Pooja plate

Food was served early , puran poli,rice,dal fry and okra sabji. They said their prayers and feasted on the food. Satnam was happy and satisfied. After the food was over Satnam took out the cadbury bars and gave it to Aditya.He was so happy and hugged his parents.

After a hour Aditya was fast asleep holding the toy car in his hands. Satnam too lay down. He had to go back early to work tomorrow, again the same grind and stench. He stared at the tin roof of his room and decided that he must search for another job soon. He wouldn’t like to bring the stench back home daily , he son was growing up , he didn’t want to be an embarrassment for his child when he would start school. Thinking of all this he slowly dozed off, his body and mind tired but happy and contended. Another day in the life of Satnam as a garbage van driver was over.

डॉक्टर; ‘रॉय’ल माणूस  

डॉक्टर; ‘रॉय’ल माणूस

पिंपरी चिंचवड शहरात पत्रकारिता करीत असताना अनेक अधिकारी, राजकिय नेते यांच्याशी संवाद साधण्याचा, विविध कारणांनी संबंध आला…त्यात भावलेली व्यक्ती म्हणजेच महापालिका मुख्य वैद्यकीय अधिकारी डॉ अनिल रॉय… एकदम ‘रॉय’ल माणूस…त्यांना कधी अधिकारी म्हणून पाहिलं नाही…किंवा बडेजाव, अहंकार दिसला नाही…आपल्याच जगात मस्त असलेला माणूस…

त्यांचा सहवास म्हणजे, एक तजेलदार गप्पाची मैफल…मनमुराद हसणं, व्यक्त होणं अफलातून…इतरांना नवी ऊर्जा देणारं…मग गप्पा राजकारणाच्या असोत की समाजकारण, वैद्यकीय क्षेत्रातील…कधी वेळ निघून जायचा कळत नसायचे…, त्यांच्याकडे किश्याचा खजिना आहे…

रॉय सरांचा आणखी एक गुण भावणारा कुण्याही पत्रकाराने विरोधात बातमी दिली म्हणून त्यांनी कधी अबोला धरलाय, असं ऐकिवात नाही… पत्रकार असो की राजकारणीही सर्वांशी स्नेहबंध जिव्हाळ्याचा…

माणूस म्हणूनही ग्रेटच…कुणाला काही मेडिकल अडचण आली तर सर अचूक मार्गदर्शन करतात…एकदम करेक्ट अनिलिसिस असतो…एक आठवण आवर्जून सांगावीशी वाटते. कोरोनाच्या पहिल्या लाटेतच मला घेरले आणि रिपोर्ट पॉझिटिव्ह आला…पायाखालची वाळू सरकली… पत्रकार किती धैर्यशील असला तरी ज्याच्यावर वेळ येते त्यालाच कळतं… ज्यावेळी कोरोनाने हाहाकार माजविला होता…, त्यावेळी बेड मिळत नव्हते आणि दररोज कुणीतरी जवळचा मित्र नातेवाईक गेल्याची बातमी येत होती… सर्व काही मन भेदरविणारे…, त्यामुळे अनेक वाईट विचार मनाला शिवून जायचे…., भीतीदायक…. अशा काळात रॉय सरांनी वाढवलेले मनोबल, केलेलं अचूक निदान आणि मदत ही मी कधीही विसरणार नाही…

रिपोर्ट पॉझिटिव्ह येताच मी सरांना फोन केला…त्यांनी मला काही तपासण्या करायला सांगितल्या. मी त्या केल्या. रिपोर्ट पाठविले… ते पाहून त्यांनी होम आयसोलेशन मध्ये राहण्याचा सल्ला दिला…आणि दहा दिवस दररोज माझ्याशी संवाद साधला… धीर दिला… आयसोलेशन वेळ संपताच ”बस्स झालं आता घराबाहेर पडा …’ असा सल्ला दिला…मी कोरोना मुक्त झालो…

सर आपण ग्रेटच…

कालच आपण महापालिका सेवेतून निवृत्त झालात…आता दुसऱ्या मजल्यावरील आपल्या केबिन मधील भेट होणार नाही, तेथील आपला फेमस कावा चहा…आणि हसून खिदळत रंगणारी मैफल होणार नाही…आम्ही त्यास मुकणार…

सर, पण आपणं वैद्यकीय मार्गदर्शन आणि फ्री क्लिनिक ही संकल्पना पुढेही सुरू ठेवावी, असं आम्हा मित्रांना वाटते…

तुम्ही वैद्यकीय डॉक्टर नाही तर मनाचे डॉक्टर आहात… अशाच व्यक्तीची या देशाला गरज आहे…

आपण महापालिका सेवेतून निवृत्त झाला आहात, पण आपल्यातील ऊर्जा निरंतर टिकणारी आहे…जोश आणि जल्लोष पूर्ण आपला स्वभाव कायम ठेवावा…

आपणांस पुढील आयुष्यास शुभेच्छा… निरामय आरोग्य आणि आपली अपूर्ण सर्व स्वप्न पूर्ण होवोत, ही सदिच्छा…असंच मनसोक्त जगत रहा…आपला सहवास आणि प्रेम कायम ठेवावे ही विनंती…

आपला सन्मित्र…
-डॉ विश्वास मोरे

मित्र नावाचा नातलग…ना जवळचा ना लांबचा…पण हाकेच्या अंतरावरचा…… (लेखन…डॉ.महेंद्र वंटे…)

Dr Mahendra Wante

१९६५ चा जून महिना …चार साडेचार वर्षांची बालकं .. धाकदपटशा करून बालवाडी नामक एका कौलारू खोलीत पालकांनी ढकललेल्या रडारडीच्या गलक्यात मी पण ढकलला गेलो…. कुणी हमसून हमसून तर कुणी भोकाड पसरून..पण सगळेच रडके.. …या समूह रुदनाकडे मख्ख पणे पाहणाऱ्या जोशी बाई.. प्रत्येकाच्या डोळ्यात ‌एकमेकाविषयी सहानुभूती ..एक दोन दिवस रडण्यात गेले… मग चेहऱ्यावर निर्विकार भाव..मग हासरी आपुलकी… दोन दिवस गाळलेल्या आसवांच्या थेंबात मैत्रीची बीजं ओलावली…. अंकुरली… …पालवली.. फुलली… आणि फूलतच राहीली…. भावनिक मुळं एकमेकात जी अडकली तो गुंता अजूनही शाबूत आहे. अ..अननसाचा…ब..बदकाचा .. पेक्षा…म… मित्राच्या ओढीने शाळेकडे पावलं खेचू लागली…कुणी चालत तर कुणी बापाच्या सायकलवर तर एखादा फटफटीवर…
कुणी डॉक्टरचा, कुणी सायबाचा, कुणी शिक्षकाचा पण बरीच मोठी पिलावळ कामगारांच्या बिऱ्हाडातील……… सवर्ण,अवर्ण,गौरवर्ण,कृष्णवर्ण, गरीब,श्रीमंत. सामाजिक भेदाभेदीची ही सगळी ओझी घराच्या उंबरठ्यावर सोडून मित्राला भेटण्यासाठी धावणारी.. पाठीवर ओझं फक्त दप्तराचं.. कुणाच्या फडक्यात चटणी भाकरी तर कुणाच्या टीफीन मधे तूप साखर पोळी.
मधल्या सुट्टीत वाटून खाताना
ना जात ना पात
ना भेद ना भाव…….
मित्रांशी खेळणं आणि सोबत खाणं याच सुखाच्या परमोच्च कल्पना … बेभान होऊन केलेली पळापळ.. पडणं, धडपडणं,खरचटणं… उचलणं, जखमेवर फूंकरणं,आयोडीन लावणं.. पुन्हा फुंकरणं..
सहवासातून सुखवासाची अनुभूती देणारा सत्संग..
याच सुखाच्या निरागस समागामातून जन्माला आलेला मित्र नावाचा नातलग…ना जवळचा ना लांबचा…पण हाकेच्या अंतरावरचा…
एके काळचा अनोळखी पण आता जीवलग
ना जातीचा ना पातीचा
ना रक्ताचा ना वंशावळीचा
मीही तोच तोच तूही
मी पणाच नाही कुठे..
वयं वाढली.. बुद्धी वाढली.. तशी इयत्ता ही वाढत गेली….
बालवाडीची झाली शाळा…शाळेचं झालं विद्यालय.. तिचं झालं महाविद्यालय.. मित्र नावाच्या नातेवाईकांत नवी भर पडली…मिशी आली ..दाढी वाढली…. खांद्या खांद्यावर जबाबदारी वाढली…
रोटी कपडा और मकान… काळानुरुप गरजा बदलल्या..
बदलल्या सुखाच्या कल्पना.. त्याच्या शोधासाठी पायाला भिंगरी…. झाल्या दिशा वेगवेगळ्या … झाल्या वेगवेगळ्या वाटा…..काही स्वता:च्या… काही वहीवाटा…..
पण वाटेच्या प्रत्येक वळणावर मागे वळत एकमेकांना अडीअडचणीला” मै हू ना” चा आशावाद देत संसाराची सप्तपदी चालणारे मित्र…
पोटाची भूक ज्यांनी कधीकाळी वाटून खाऊन भागवली ते आता झाले एकमेकांच्या भावनिक भूकेचे वाटेकरी ..
हक्काने बोलवता येईल असा सुख दुःखातील सहकारी…
लग्नं,बारसं, बर्थडे,पूजा,
कुणी कारने, कुणी दुचाकीने तर कुणी बसने …पण येणार हमखास ‌..नातलगांपेक्षा आधी पोहचणारा तोच मित्र नावाचा नातलग….ना लांबचा ना दूरचा… हाकेच्या अंतरावरचा…
गेल्या ५० वर्षांत कितीतरी वेळा आला गेला…. दु:खात आणि सुखात.. कधीतरी सहज….वाटलं भेटाव़ं म्हणून आलेला.. वयाने साठी गाठली तरी चवीपुरतं बालपण अजूनही गाठीला जपलेला..

कष्टाने मिळवलेली सुबत्ता आणि दैवाने दिलेली सुखदुःख: भोगलेली पिढी ..
काहींनी मोजता येणार नाही इतकं मिळवलं तर कुणी सहन होणार नाही इतकं गमावलं… कुणाची सुखं मुठीत सामावलेली.. तर कुणाची मिळकत बॅंकेच्या पासबुकातील पानावर मावलेली…
पंखात बळ भरलेल्या पाखरांनी आपआपलं आभाळ शोधलं… कुणी लोकल तर कुणी ग्लोबल झालं.
कोणी आजोबा केलं तर कोणी ग्रॅंडपा… मोबाईलच्या पडद्यावर नातवाने दिला पा…
पोटाचा घेर सुटला..गुढग्यांचा भार वाढला
केसाने रंग सोडला….डोक्याने केस सोडले..
बीपी, शुगर, संधीवात…. सकाळ दुपार संध्याकाळ.
जेवणाच्या जागी औषधं आली..
मित्रांचा कुंज तोच
तीच मैत्रमोहीनी
माझ्या ६१ व्या वाढदिवशी एका हाकेला जमला.. कुणी कारने,कुणी दुचाकीने तर कुणी चालत…पद, प्रतिष्ठा अन् सुबत्तेपायी साठलेलं मी पणाचं ओझं उंबरठ्यावर सोडून..
तोच उत्साह तीच निरागसता…
बालसवंगडी ते शाळकरी.. वर्गात पहिल्या दिवशी एकाच सुरात रडलेले ते तमाम सुदामा… सवंगड्याच्या अनेक सुखात हसलेला आणि प्रत्येक दुखा:त पाणावलेला सुदामा…
घाटणेकर,सानप, चव्हाण,आठवले..
किती नावं किती आडनावं…
ना जात ना पात
ना भेद ना भाव..
आता ना फडक्यातील भाकरी उरली ना डब्यातील तूप साखर पोळी…उरले आहेत जग नावाच्या बंदीशाळेतील शेवटचे काही तास आणि प्रत्येक सुदाम्याने जपलेले पोहे खास……
शाळा संपल्याची घंटा वाजण्याआधी आनंदाने वाटून खा
ते उरलेसुरले चविष्ट घास..
मित्र नावाच्या नातलगाचे…..
ना जातीचा ना पातीचा
ना रक्ताचा ना वंशावळीचा
ना जवळचा ना लांबचा…पण हाकेच्या अंतरावरचा…

लेखन…डॉ.महेंद्र वंटे…
( माझ्या आयुष्यातील तमाम मित्रांना समर्पित)

Dr Anil Roy & Dr Mahendra Wante

The conglomeration of all souls.

Yogi stared into his telescope , the Celestron Astro master was a gift from his father on his eleventh birthday. Now a year later he was a master gazer. Today, again he saw it , a tiny object of bright light amongst the stars and planets . Amoeba shaped and bulging at all its protrusions.He had been observing it for over a week now, not understanding yet as to what it was. It had an aura other stars in the constellation didn’t have. There were unusual movements and emissions too from this object . Small tiny streaks of light were getting detached from it on an off. All his knowledge could not not decipher as to which star this was.

This object in the sky was silently wading through space. It contained all the souls..the spiritual principle embodied in human beings, all rational and spiritual beings, that had left human bodies ever since Adam and Eve first inhabitated earth. Trillions of souls who had relinquished their dead bodies now decayed to dust or burnt to ashes long ago. The object was hardly a third the size of the sun, yet it was all powerful , all souls that once accompanied the humans while they lived, each one the size of nano microns,yet glowing with the power of a thousand lux , silent and cold light.

Conglomeration of souls

The separation of the soul from the body happens at death. It is said the soul or atma may wander for forty days or immediately travel to its destination. Yes, but ultimately it will travel to its destination, the conglomeration of all souls wandering in this universe as a single star, never ever returning to another body unlike many would have us to believe.

In the course of its travel to its conglomeration, the soul visits all the places where the body that it had dwelled in had travelled and stayed. The soul is a micro super computer , all the history of the body as it lived on earth is encrypted into it. Every instance of life and it’s memories are for ever saved in its memory. It contained an immense quantity of knowledge. Imagine the souls of Einstein, Gandhi, Edison, Pasteur,Roentgen,Darwin,Tagore, Swami Vivekananda, Osho,Lincoln,Napoleon, Hitler, Saddam, Galileo, Socrates, Homer, Aristotle, Bhaskar charya, Sushrut, Shakespeare, Dickens,Valmiki, Colombus, Vasco da gama, Vinci and who not, all together in a single star. It had to be a million times more powerful than the most powerful supercomputer today. They existed in absolute harmony, their journey to earth having been over.

Inspite of the harmony of its existence as a conglomeration , on and off there had been a suffocation of some souls. These souls wanted to return to earth , to visit their bodies which were dust and ashes. They felt that their leaving of the body had been premature and untimely, they had their jobs half done. Mostly these souls belonged to humans with untimely deaths like accidents, murders and suicide. These souls never were at comfort in their conglomeration. The urge to revisit earth was very strong in them. The supreme power or GOD was not happy, GOD didn’t exactly like the concept of revisit of a soul again to earth. The souls cried and rebelled . GOD couldn’t resist, couldn’t see their sorrow and so agreed , but on a condition that they could never again join the conglomeration without having been in a human body again.

What Yogi had been watching through his telescope was this all powerful, all knowledgeable body all souls. The streaks of light leaving were those of the souls returning to earth to locate their past bodies. Yogi noticed once the streak of light left the star, suddenly it became invisible. The moment these souls left the conglomeration their lights were lost, they hurtled towards earth at the speed a thousand times that of light. They became invisible , they travelled to the same locations on continents from where they had risen to the conglomeration. As they touched earth they were invisible to all creatures. They started travelling in search of their previous bodies that were long ago turned to dust or ashes. They ashes had been washed away by rains and rivers. The dust had mingled with the soil. They cried out loudly but unheard to human ears. GOD felt hurt, he pitied the souls wandering across the earth. He devised a plan…..GODs plan.

Fireflies ………..They produce light in special organs in their abdomens by combining a chemical called luciferin, enzymes called luciferases and oxygen . They are an inch long and have a life span of around two months. They emit cold light and do not bite.

That’s what GOD did. He gave the souls a temporary body, he gave them light so that they could begin their search for their lost bodies….They were the fireflies , actually returned souls, this what no human knew. He gave them a period of two months in which they could search for their past bodies and look out for new bodies where they could now dwell . The rebirth of the dead had been sanctioned by GOD.

The soul now with the body of a firefly, with cold light , flew in all directions in search of dust or ash to which it had belonged. The light, the sense of direction, the super micro computer it was, it didnt take much time to locate the dust or ash of its prior body. The firefly carried a speck of this material and went ahead for its next journey to find a new body.

They lady had concieved, the super micro computer of the soul or the now firefly could sense and locate it. The firefly travelled to concieving mothers and transmitted the speck it was carrying into the conceptus. The soul had found its new body. A rebirth had been decided. A human who had inadvertantly died an untimely death was being reborn. Whether the new human would ever know his past life was never sure, some would, others wouldn’t , but the soul had found solace, another chance of life had been given to a human who had had an untimely departure from earth.

The souls in the conglomeration sensed and knew that some human, in fact they knew it was Yogi who had spotted their conglomeration. They had noted that for the past whole week Yogi was following them. They realised that Yogi had seen the streaks of light or souls leaving back for earth. They weren’t sure of what was to be done. They asked GOD , should we stop him……..GOD smiled…No he said….It’s one amongst you in a new body…..It’s Aryabhatta.

ARYABHATTA…Indian mathematician and astronomer

डॉ हेमंत चिक्लिकर यांचे हृदय स्पर्श करणारे पोस्ट

Merry christmas

सालाबाद प्रमाणे या वर्षी रॉय कडे ख्रिसमस पार्टी नाही हा फार मोठा सांस्कृतिक धक्का आहे . वर्षानुवर्षे पंढरीच्या वारीला जाणाऱ्यांना अचानक वारी कॅन्सल झाल्यावर जसं वाटेल तसच काहीसं.रॉय हा माणूस नावाप्रमाणेच रॉयल .नावापुरताच ख्रिश्चन.एरवी पुरता गाववाला . ज्या सहजतेने चर्च ला जाईल,त्याच सहज पणें देव दर्शन ही घेईल .त्याच सहजपणाने दसऱ्याला जिजामाता रुग्णालयात वॉर्ड बॉय सकट सगळ्यांच्या गाड्यांना हार घालेल.यामध्ये यत्किंचितही नाटकीपणा नाही.सर्वधर्म समभाव केवळ कागदोपत्री नाही तर तो हृदयातून आलेला .दरवर्षी न चुकता त्याचा आवर्जून फोन येणार म्हणजे येणार.त्याच्या घरी सुपर क्लास वन पासून चतुर्थ श्रेणी मधले कर्मचारी त्याच मोकळेपणा ने वावरत असायचे .सर्वांची चोख व्यवस्था. खाण्या पिण्याची चंगळ.सगळ्यांची आवड निवड लक्षात ठेवून तसे प्लॅनिंग.आणि हे सगळं गेली 25- 30 वर्षे.यासाठी फक्त ऐपत असून भागत नाही, दानत ही लागते .
ख्रिसमस ची ही वारी बंद झाल्यामुळे माझी पुण्याई कमी पडली अशी माझी खंत आहे .पण त्यामुळे गेली कित्येक वर्षे अनिल ने जी निरपेक्ष मैत्री केली त्याची किंमत समजली . मित्रा,खूप खूप शुभेच्छा. ख्रिसमस निमित्ताने आपल्या मैत्री साठी .Cheers..👍

Doctor I was, Doctor I am. Doctor I shall always be.

Doctor I was. Doctor I am. I heard their complaints ,. I understood their pain,. In my brain , I deduced their illness. I treated them right, I got them well. They were happy and so was I . Contended was I .

Doctor I was. Doctor I am. The ques at my OPD room was always unending. The bigger the que, the more vigor I worked with. The night duties were tiresome,. I assisted them in delivering their children,. I monitored them sincerely ,. I knew no sleep ,. The nurses and ayas assisted me,. I held crying vermin coated babies in my hands. I watched as the mothers cried with joy,. My heart missed a beat if the baby didn’t cry.

Doctor I was.                                       Doctor I am.    Years went by and I rose up the ladder,. As destined perhaps ,I became the chief medical officer,. Now the whole medical department was under me. I missed those nights, the wails of mothers, the cries of babies. Yet I was happy, manoeuvering my department to newer heights and perfections .

Doctor I was.                                       Doctor I am.    I managed to get permission to open up a Post graduate institute,. My happiness knew no bounds. My colleagues and fellow doctors were my life. Happiness they say can never last for ever ,. Same with me. The bureaucrats and politicians connived to throw me out. Three decades of life as a doctor was gone.

Doctor I was.                                       Doctor I am.    I found myself transferred to the sanitation department. Gone were the patients and doctor colleagues and friends.

Doctor I was.                                       Doctor I am.    Three and a half years before I retire,. I am supervising the cleaning of streets,. Door to door garbage collection, Clearing rivers of hyacinth,. Cleaning naalas and gutters,.

Doctor I was.                             Doctor I am.    Now those three and half years are coming to an end,. I still am here, garbage and garbage clearing is my forte,. No more curing the ill,. No more babies cry in my hands ,. No more mothers pleading with me for help.

Doctor I was.                                       Doctor I am.    No more doctors are my friends now,. They have distanced themselves from me, it hurts a lot , my heart bleeds,. Have to accept what life is giving me. Forty five days now before I retire, A doctor I was ,. A doctor I am,. A doctor I shall always be.

No more patients, only garbage

Easter Sunday

The second warning appears in Mark 9:30–32 (and also in Matthew 17:22–23) as follows: He said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men. They will kill him, and after three days he will rise.” But they did not understand what he meant and were afraid to ask him about it.

Good Friday

Jesus the Saviour

Good Friday . .the day Christians commemorate Jesus Christ’s crucifixion. A day of grief, penance and fasting. The day is also known as Black Friday. Good Friday marks the end of Lent which is a 40-day fasting period for Christians. The day Jesus laid down his life for the sins of mankind, the day the Jews found immeasurable pleasure in crucifying Jesus. It is believed that Christ willingly suffered to save his people from their sins. On this day, the followers of Christ remember the sacrifices made by him. It is the end of the holy week, from the day day Jesus entered Jerusalem on Palm Sunday.

To be crucified in the the most terrible manner and yet we label it as Good Friday. Yes, that’s because all of mankind’s sins were washed off by one act of Christ taking all sins upon himself. No wonder it’s a good day for mankind.

He died so that we may live

The resurrection of Christ is still a matter of debate, but not for the believers, that he rose again on the third day , now celebrated as Easter Sunday is believed by all of the Christian faithful. It is god’s kindness that he sent his only son to be crucified for the sins of mankind. But has man learnt anything from this sacrifice, has it made man turn away from sin, has man changed himself or will it require another coming of the prophet to wash mankind’s sins again.

Observation of lent, forty days of fasting and prayers, celebrations on good Friday or Easter is of no value as long as man continues to commit sins again and again and just pray for forgiveness, not really trying to learn from what Jesus taught the world . Good Friday and Easter will come year after year to remind mankind of the great sacrifice of Jesus . Let’s understand the lessons to be learnt and followed so that in future Good Friday will be more meaningful.

His sacrifice shall not be in vain

Even as we have celebrated this holy day today the 15th of April 2022 and we look forward to the day Jesus rose to ascend into heaven and be with his Father again as we celebrate Easter on this 17th Sunday, let us pray Christ’s sacrifice shall not have been in vain.

A patients death…A doctor’s suicide

No more…Rest in peace

Archana Sharma, doctor, gynaecologist, gold medallist, supreme giver of new lives , forced into committing suicide. What can be sadder than this. In today’s India, so called progressive , latest world power, education hub and supplier of doctors world wide. Yet this sad state of affairs .

The incident……… A lady Asha devi, aged 22 years is wheeled in for a delivery at night. As is the norm all care us taken. She delivers at 9 am in the morning but lands in PPH. The doctors did their best what medical science expects , but couldn’t save her. She loses her life. The husband , relatives and villagers gather around, they put pressure on the hospital staff, block roads, blame the doctors negligence for the death. The police come in to take stock of the situation .

Why are the doctors always the target

The police slap section 302 on the doctor, a gold medallist Archana Sharma. Why? What was the rationale . To satisfy the crowds?? The body of the deceased is sent for post mortem. A doctor is sentenced to guilt, for no reason. Imagine her condition. After years of study and hard work she has been slapped with IPC 302 for no fault of hers.

Haven’t the police heard of this

Any person who commits murder shall be punished with death or imprisonment for life and shall also be liable to fine as per section 302 of the Indian Penal Code. Offence of murder is a Non-Bailable and Non Compoundable Offence (where a compromise cannot be done). Now this is the section saphed on a doctor performing her duty with all sincerity . How shameful . This yu the section slapped on Dr Archana……. Are the police in their right minds. Do they know the difference between a medical negligence and medical complications.

The police…Wrong decision

It’s demeaning to her skills and profession , she has been made a scape goat to satisfy the ego of fools who don’t understand what PPH is. Postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) is defined as a blood loss of 500 ml or more within 24 hours after birth. PPH is the leading cause of maternal mortality in low-income countries, and the primary cause of nearly one quarter of all maternal deaths globally.

  • Causes of PPH
  • Tone: uterine atony,
  • Trauma: lacerations of the uterus, cervix or vagina.
  • Tissue: retained placenta or clots.
  • Thrombin: pre-existing or acquired coagulopathy.

Have the husband and relatives or the crowd ever read or understood these reasons. Do they know how difficult it is to manage these cases. Why would a doctor ever let her patient die. The doctor always does what is best, but may not always be successful in preventing the ultimate result. Does the police understand the intricacies of PPH. If not then on what grounds was section 302 used, just to satisfy the crowd. Horrible , the doctor is always a sift target. The death was in probability unavoidable. Then why potray a doctor in such a manner at all .

Archana could not bear the embarrassment, the torture,the fact she wasn’t at fault and that section 302 slapped on her……..She committed suicide. How sad, a good professional , a gold medallist doctor just committed suicide . what a loss for the family, her patients , the doctor fraternity and India. In her suicide note she says she loves het husband and children, she prays that they should not be harrased. She says she was not at fault, she says her death is to state that she is innocent, not guilty . She request all not to harras innocent doctors. She prays that her children never feel the loss of a mother.

Will there ever be justice

How heart wrenching a story. A pregnant lady lose her life to a medical known complication. A lady doctor unable to bear the situation ends her life. Is this the modern india. Is this our culture. Is this why children study hard to become doctors, give up routine luxuries and work hard to serve people who still seem to be unkind. No, this should never have happened . It’s a blot on our society .

The suicide note

Where are the other doctors , the so called Indian Medical Association, the government, the local doctors association. A few posts on Twitter, FB, and their work is over . Forget empathise , hardly anyone even sympathises. No one cares. Each is interested in his or her own career. All are busy , no time to stop and think what can be done . Doctors are doomed in India for sure . Their selfish nature, unwillingness to stand up for their own. The day is not far when more and more of them will face the same fate. God save the doctors .

Majority of the political class owned press is shamefully silent. Rotten state of affairs.

Interview with Amitav Banerjee

Re blogged with permission from Dr Amitav Banerjee.

Book: Covid-19 Pandemic: A Third Eye About the Book: “Dr. Amitav Banerjee has a knack of conveying seemingly complex public health messages in a lucid manner, understandable and appealing to experts as well as to the layperson. His writings are gripping, like a story, while at the same time educating the reader on subtle issues with […]

Interview with Amitav Banerjee

The Kashmir files…..a much needed awakening.

It took 32 years and a movie to awaken a nation of 130 crores from a long deep slumber, that there had been a genocide, an exodus and displacement of huge number of families and untold misery of the Kashmiri Pandits, a sect of Kashmiri Bramhins

Why it happened, in whose regime it happened or how it could have been avoided or stopped is not to be debated now. That it happened and we are all responsible directly or directly for the suffering of our brethren Kashmiri Pandits is a fact that cannot be wished away. Why were there only subdued voices of support to these pundits, why wasn’t there any mass movement against those untold atrocities , why did political class irrespective of parties keep the issue under wraps , why wasn’t it debated openly and why wasn’t the voice of these people not heard for so long.

Refugees in their own country

Where was the fourth pillar of democracy, the Press. They find time and energy to discuss, debate and inflate trivial matters, then why was their voice feeble during this genocide or even after it for three decades, these are the questions we should be asking today. Are we one nation, if so why is it that the Mumbai riots, bombings, and terrorist attacks find mention and swift counter action but the Kasmiri Pandits are left to fend for themselves. As a nation somewhere, somehow the connect needed is sadly missing.

The press failed them

Early 1990 the genocide,murder, rape and purge of the hindu minority in Kashmir began. So any person , who is 32 years as of today wasn’t yet born then. Those children who exited Kashmir then and we’re below 10 years of age ate today in their late thirties or early forties . How much they remember is not known, but no child perhaps would forget the gory scenes witnessed by them in those tender years. Those in their teens bore the brunt with their parents and grandparents, they are today in their early fifties. They saw it, experienced it, they will never forget. Those adult parents in their twenties and thirties are nearing their sixties , they bore the brunt, carrying their children and parents to safety through shelters and camps to resettle in other states. Some lost their old parents during this journey, some their children, yet others lost their own lives to terrorist as they tried to flee the situation. They were forced out of their homes, their homeland by the terrorists and Muslim seperatists, a weak government and an ineffective governor, an unresponsive press and a nation that didn’t bother to be on their side actively.

The senior citizens who managed to get out of Kashmir then are perhaps long dead, the survivors in their eighties or nineties rueing their bad luck, cursing the separatists who forced them out of their home lands.

For 32 years these people have faced untold misery, some sympathy here and there , practically no empathy, yet these strong minded but mild and gentle folk who had lost everything , resettled at various locations across India. At many places the local folk did extend a helping hand to enable these refugees in their own country to start life afresh. These brave hearts kept their sorrows to themselves , helped each other and slowly endeared themselves to the local citizens where they settled. Some took up jobs, some went into small businesses, students restarted their schooling with some help from the local authorities. Their sufferings were never discussed, they kept the dark stories to them selves, a few people tried to probe into their past with some success, a few books got written on their sad journey and experiences, but it never actually reached the masses . Surely we are to blame, how could we not understand their suffering, a few hundred rupees given as a contribution to help these stranded Kashmiri brethren and we thought we had done our bit. We failed to question the successive governments, we failed to highlight their sufferings, we failed as a nation to come to the rescue of these Kashmiri Pundits. NGO’s and other organisations did make feeble attempts to make the Kashmiri voice be heard, but in the din of our political system and an unwilling press, they were hardly heard.

Three decades passed by, they had become a forgotten lot, no one cared as to what we could do for them, governments promised packages, promises to get them back to their homeland, nothing actually materialised. Whenever packages are given, it must be understood that hardly anything actually reaches the beneficiary, similarly the hundreds of crores that were supposed to be spent on getting these Pandits back to their homeland, have surely been pocketed by the smart guys along the line, what will ever reach them will not even suffice to buy tissue paper or handkerchiefs to wipe their tears

Then came the movie, “The Kashmir files”..well researched,studied and presented. It captured the minute details of the genocide and suffering. Old wounds reopened, bleeding again, all those alive today of those lakhs of Kashmiri Pandits at last had a voice. The new generation of Indians who were oblivious to these stories and facts are shocked. How could this happen in their India. It was unacceptable, the movie is getting rave reviews, excellent. Suddenly again India is one…..all are grieved , sympathy, empathy everything is back. All over social media, Instagram, Facebook, telegram, LinkedIn, Twitter is full of awe and shock. The movie has stirred the consciousness of all Indians, young and old, rich and poor irrespective of religion and caste. People are crying openly at the theatres, all walking out are teary eyed and full of new found determination that the Kashmiri Pandits need to be given back their homes, they should be compensated for all their losses and mental agony.

The new India is with the pandits, the government should take note of it and take immediate and persuasive measures to give them back their paradise. Let’s keep politics aside, let all political parties take a simple stand that this issue needs to be resolved at the earliest and let’s hope and pray such an incident never ever occurs again anytime, anywhere in India or in this world.

Putin v/s Zelensky. NATO..EU…USA

This is perhaps how a simple minded common Asian citizen sees the war. Stop it must, for war is no means a solution  The war I do not support.

Two men at war

Putin…First prime minister, now President of Russia. Former intelligence officer, black belt in martial arts, total fitness.  Experience of over two decades in governance. Leads one of today’s most powerful nations. Post dissolution of the USSR has been wary of the design of NATO & EU along with the other superpower USA. His hawk eyed view has led him to believe and perhaps rightly so that Ukraine and other East European countries are being prodded and used as a base for developing  a position to strike Russia. Has been closely monitoring the development of biological warfare in Ukraine that would ultimately pose a threat to Russian population. The threat of missiles covering the whole of Russia too from Ukraine was under the scanner. Still believes that Ukraine historically is part of Russia. Any threat to Russia needs to be nipped in the bud, is not his wishful, but rightful thinking. He has a responsibility towards his country, to keep it safe from any threat of attack. He believed that attack was the best defence, if he did not act now, it could be never. In his thoughts he perhaps wasn’t or isn’t wrong. His act of invasion is open to debate. Before condemning his act of invasion of Ukraine the reasons as he believes to be true has to be understood and analysed

Zelensky….a famous comedian, Russian speaking and a Jew. Popularity of his shows gained him wide acceptance and was elected as President of Ukraine in a landslide victory. Though there have been many scandals linked to him, he still was popular. His vision was simple , he was not happy with the deals cut out when Ukraine got its independence under Gorbachev. His yearning for past glory and his idea of being as strong if not stronger than Russia got him to get nearer to NATO,EU & USA. He was willing to be a part of it , wanted to let them have it’s missile bases in Ukraine, that would increase his bargaining power with Russia. It is said that  Ukraine has developed centres of manufacturing biological warfare. He was under the impression that no one was watching. His actions and intentions were what he felt would of benefit to Ukraine. As the President his actions perhaps cannot be faulted. Every leader of a country would certainly aspire to be strong militarily. Where he perhaps went wrong or miscalculated was that the USA, NATO or EU would jump to Ukrainian defense , they were not really trustworthy. He always believed that if the time came all these nations would come to his rescue and fight it out against the Russians . He perhaps also didn’t forsee or miscalculated the Russian response.

USA, NATO, EU … Their understanding was simple, they needed to contain Russia. Ukraine territory was needed. They kept the carrot of NATO, EU membership dangling to Ukraine. They knew Zelensky was not an experienced politician. The comedian was straightforward, his love was for his country. They were cocksure he wouldn’t see through their nefarious intentions. All the while they were sure Putin would see through, they knew Russia would at some point walk into Ukraine to stop their proposed dream. If and when it happened, the war would be a win win situation for them. The causalities would be Ukrainian, the world sympathy would go to the underdog Ukraine. Their arms could be sold, they controlled the world media, print, digital and social. The world would be hearing and seeing only what they willed the world could see. No human losses for them, no destruction of their property or installations. The biological warfare installations in Ukraine too needed to be removed, Russia would do that. They could levy sanctions against Russia, supply a few outdated expiry date arms to Ukraine , pass resolutions in world forums against Russia and get the sympathy of other world leaders and the Ukrainian masses. The sanctions against Russia would cripple their economy, the war itself would prove to be a costly affair for Russia, they are trying to get the Russian population to go against Putin. Once Russia is weakened they would now be the sole super powers. Salute to their crooked minds.

Threesome v/s Russia

The invasion and Putin….. He invaded Ukraine, his army has been targetting all army installations, biological warfare factories across Ukraine . There has been heavy collateral civilian causalities. The Russians too has suffered major causalities, the sanctions against Russia has crippled them economically. There has been a mass exodus of Ukrainian citizens to neighbouring countries. The civilian population is the main sufferer. Zelensky is not giving up, the novice politician that he is, fails to understand the damage being done to his country. He somehow is immune to the suffering of his countrymen, so many lives lost, so much of infrastructure destruction, the saga continues. A smart leader would have called for a truce, he would not let his country men suffer, Zelensky is blind to it, his only aim is to win the war, which is perhaps a remote possibility. High time common sense prevails upon the comedian President, this is not a television show, it’s the real world there are no happy endings. Putin too needs to finish this immediately, take out your targets , stop the war, too much of collateral civilian damage has already been done. Putin has to accept responsibility too, agreed you started this for the defence of your country, perhaps we can’t grudge you that, but now it has to stop. Have a big heart, stop the war before the war devours both of your countries.

Now…stop this war

NATO..USA..EU….. You have had your fun, now step in and stop this war, do not remain immune to human sufferings, your target is Russia, fight them directly, do not use other nations as pawns .

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