Varanasi Again – 69: On the lectern

I walked down the steps of the LT, with the children tagging along, into the well and then up to the lectern. Vaishali moved aside to let me take the ‘stage’, eyeing me mischievously, and smiling knowingly. The alumni were quiet, listening intently, smiling, some of them pointing at me, some nudging each other. The…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 69: On the lectern

Varanasi Again – 68: The alumni function

Vaishali started by welcoming all the former teachers one by one. The teachers were presented bouquets by the organisers, and the alumni, and then she invited the alumni to the podium one by one, by their roll numbers – their undergraduate roll numbers!! It was fun! The alumni walked down to the well of the…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 68: The alumni function

Varanasi Again – 67: The proceedings begin

KG’s wife was helping organise stuff down below in the well. The flowers, the bouquets to greet the teachers who would come, the stoles which all the alumni had to wear and, pagris. Yes! A man carrying several bag-loads full of the typical Indian headgear known as pagri walked in and, with the help of…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 67: The proceedings begin

Varanasi Again – 66: Inside the ILT

We climbed the steps of the aisle to find ourselves a comfortably distant vantage point, and a suitably unpopulated seat in the farther benches of the ILT. As all four of us settled down, I had a good look around. The poor old ILT looked like a bad case of facelift performed on a gracefully…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 66: Inside the ILT

Varanasi Again – 65: The corridors of the past

We walked past the atrium with the guard desk, or the reception, on our right side, the entrance to the corridor which housed the Preventive Medicine department and the Institute library at the end of it, on our left, and the main corridor of the institute, the spinal cord, the hollow bowel of the building…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 65: The corridors of the past

Varanasi Again – 64: Ghosts of the past

The temple stood to our left side, mute, beckoning, nursing dark secrets from our past lives inside its bosom, not revealing, not sharing, just waiting……waiting for me…. But that was last year. I had already honoured my tryst with the temple, and the bright orange deity with the large, dark eyes who resided inside the…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 64: Ghosts of the past

Varanasi Again – 63: Retracing our steps

We exited the Radiology department, and the hospital building, and started to walk towards the Institute building. Vaishali kept talking about the department, about the faculty there in her time, about the academic program, the training, the equipment they had back in her day, while I kept thinking about Lahiri Dada, the Cardiothoracic surgeon who…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 63: Retracing our steps

Varanasi Again – 62: Radiology and more…

We entered through the glass door and, with some help, found ourselves in familiar corridors. First stop was the MRI unit where Vaishali had spent a considerable part of her training, and had done her thesis work on MRCP, Magnetic Resonance Cholangio Pancreaticography or imaging of the biliary tract using MRI. We especially wanted to…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 62: Radiology and more…

Varanasi Again – 61: Urban legends

‘Tell us some stories Papa’, Vandita said. ‘There have to be some stories, some interesting anecdotes from your times, some urban legends that were handed down, or were circulating in the hospital?’ ‘Legends?’, I said, my eyes twinkling,’Yes, I do have some.’ ‘Tell, na…’, the children sang in unison. I laughed and then obliged. ‘When…… Continue reading Varanasi Again – 61: Urban legends

The Reunion XXI: Ruiya Hostel

Ruiya Hostel, in our times was an undergraduate hostel, where freshers were given accommodation when they first joined the MBBS course in IMS, BHU. And thus, this was the place where we, the boys I mean since it was a boys-only hostel, had met first and become friends and had started making our memories. The…… Continue reading The Reunion XXI: Ruiya Hostel

Life in the times of the Corona Pandemic – I

That day I woke up to the chirping of birds. I had not heard so many birds singing outside my house since I don’t know when. And then there was another sound which made the morning very pleasant…….silence. No cars honking, no screeching of tires, no cacophony of people fighting with each other. Ever since…… Continue reading Life in the times of the Corona Pandemic – I

Heart of the Matter

Spending time with children is a rejuvenating experience; a course correction of sorts. It helps one remember, with help from the innocent clarity of a child’s vision, what is wrong, what is right and what one should be thankful to God for. I often try to steal some time away from my daily schedule to…… Continue reading Heart of the Matter

Motorcycle Nation

The diversity of transportation in India. An auto-ricksahw, ox cart, car, and motorcycles share the road near the Delhi Railway Station, Delhi, India.

I have a peculiar aversion to motorcycles, the reasons of which are not particularly difficult to fathom. It is not only the sheer numbers of these ‘hell horses’ and the way people drive them,  but also the noise they create and the number of road traffic accidents they cause and the death and disability that…… Continue reading Motorcycle Nation

The National Medical Commission Bill: Right Diagnosis, Wrong Medicine

The recent, token, 12-hour strike called by the Indian Medical Association (IMA) on 2ndJanuary 2018, brought to the fore a confrontation which had been slowly building up for some time now. The medical fraternity, beleaguered as it already is with several anti-doctor media campaigns running presently, finds itself pitted against the central government which, the…… Continue reading The National Medical Commission Bill: Right Diagnosis, Wrong Medicine