Dr. Arun Gadre: Journey from Atheism to Jesus Christ- Part 1

Dr. Arun  Dr. Arun Gadre is a gynecologist turned Marathi novelist. With wife Dr. Jyoti, he left the glamour of city life for practice in a small drought affected rural town in India among the poor peasants, He has eleven published books in Marathi, including four award-winning novels, three educational books, and two textbooks for an open university. After a long and tiresome journey he meets his creator and redeemer Jesus Christ.    


Prologue

 

Honest Autobiography is a demanding undertaking. Neutral autobiography is a self-contradictory thing in nature. Actually, it is what we all are engaged in throughout our day. The self defense! We do it all the times since morning until night amidst our near ones and in our friends. What otherwise the quarrels are between husband and wife?  Autobiography is invariably a self-defense.  It cannot be otherwise.  Well!  It might be possible for those so called great persons to examine themselves with a neutral prospective.  But in that case, the very fact of neutrality is seen being displayed too with a shining armor!

 

Thus, I have stumbled at the beginning!  I am not any great person with a slightest halo of divinity or statesmanship.  Nobody is waiting eagerly for my autobiography.  I have no great extraordinary success story to tell; neither I have that authority which comes along with age.  Nobody really bothers about what I have to offer.  I have lived a life a little out of routine way, and there are some published books to my account.  This is what I have. I am an author.  And what does writing of an author comprise of?  Any writing, novel included, is a sort of autobiography.  My first novel — Ghatachakra, (the vicious cycle) and my another book, `Kinwat days', (my days in place called Kinwat) were based on my own experience.  The novel was on the subject that was dear to me. I am a gynecologist, a working gynecologist in small Rural Indian town. I was a student in a prestigious medical college in city Bombay, India. The education system in the medical field is rotten to the core. Many of my friends were quite frustrated when they had to face the fact that how ever they would try and how ever they would excel, the gold medal would always be given to some son or a daughter of some influential doctor around. Few were so depressed that they even tried to commit suicides. One was successful. The novel is just that. The agony that I faced took the form of a novel. The another published book is an autobiographical account. I ventured on my own, taking a loan from the bank to settle in a tribal area, the place called Kinwat. I was a total failure and had to literally sell everything and to have run away. The book is the story of my failure, the failure of a romantic revolutionary.  These books were as if, I had opened the window of my life and asked the readers to peep in to it. My most recent novel is `Vadhastanbha', (the cross).  It must be a sort of my autobiography too!  It has to in a way.  The readers must have wondered about the exact character among all in this novel that could be my spokesperson. Many would have speculated too about it being the Christian nurse named Merriam who has rejected the organized Christian sect of Catholicism and who is walking along with a person of Christ.  It was obvious for any intelligent reader that author must be speaking through her. But it could be otherwise too.  After all, it is a novel. There is one magazine here in my language that reaches the intellectuals mainly. It is named as 'Antarnad', (Inner voice). It published a detailed review on my novel. But the editor must have been eager to know my own stand. So when the magazine was set to come out with a special issue, the editor rang me and asked for my autobiography directly. He specified that he wants me to portray my intellectual journey along with my literally and social sketch. I have to my credit ten published books and seven awards. I have settled in rural India, with a lot of struggle and hardship and am supposed to know the ground reality quite well. That is the reason he was asking my autobiography even though I am just 49 years old one.

MR Vijay Tendulkar (a well-known dramatist in language Marathi) is my beloved author.  He loves my books, and that is one of my tender spot.  He declared once in his interview,

"I am a mirror.  As an author, it is my job to show the face of the society in the mirror."

 

Of course!  It is the job of an author.  But the stated neutrality in his statement is somewhat slippery.  I asked him,"Well!  Sir — the mirror too stands at the angle that the author decides.  It is of the nature that the author selects.  It can be a flat one — convex one — or a concave one!"

 

To think of it, one statement by Sartre is a famous one.  He states, " any sentence containing Words is an ethical statement of some kind."

 

A funny reality!  Is not it?  See whose statement is it?  It is by Sartre. He is a self-proclaimed existentialist and nihilist. And he is vouching that words do carry some meaning.  What a great contradiction!  It should not be so. Contradictions are nothing but the essence of any individual.  Sartre is also not an exception to this rule.  It is a simple reality that words including the word meaninglessness and nihilism too explain something.  Meaningless-ness is also pregnant with some meaning.  Meaningless-ness is not meaningless.  To search for the purpose and meaning for one's life is an inevitable and bruised journey of every person. It is an inevitable and an unavoidable reality that each one has to face point blankly at some juncture in his life. The questions must be answered are, 'Who am I? Why do I live?' One can never avoid

however s/he tries to, the breaking down, the frustration and the devastating isolation these questions bring on him/her. And when a person does stumble upon this reality, only two alternatives remain open for him/her. One is to get broken and to face the mirror of truth up front.  The other and easy way out is to deny the breaking and to wear a mask to mock it with all of one's might and efforts. 

 

  The apprehending of this basic fact of life does not depend on the acquired knowledge or the kind of experience of the person has had. They are necessary, but not sufficient. The basic issue here is that of will. What does the person want? Does s/he want truthfulness? Does s/he ready to accept the truth and the consequences that come along with it? Answer to this very question shapes his/her understanding of his/her own broken ness. Adulous Huxley is a humanist and atheist. But have a look at his quote.

 

 He states, " We do not comprehend. The reason is, we do not want to understand. Our own will defines the nature and direction to which one's intelligence is applied. Those who confer nihilism and meaninglessness in their life and reject any possibility of meaning in it actually do not want any meaning whatsoever at all. There is something in their living, which detests meaningfulness. There is some thing in their present life, which is making them content in their secure mask of meaninglessness. For them, the glamour and the thrill in the mere act of searching the truth is sufficient. No further advances please, is their motto"

 

    It is the reason that generally one is contended in self-justification and in the muddle of words in doing so.     The outcome is that one refuses to get broken down truly. And even if s/he is broken down, s/he does not seek the truth. 

 

  Quest for Truth portrays just one pre-condition. It is, 'Seek and you would get it.'

Any autobiography is nothing but facing truth squarely.

 

 I to had to face getting broken down in my life. Actually, in a way, I asked for it.

 

Childhood Days: Dream for the Society 

 

          The graph of my life was otherwise have been a straight one. I was from a middle class family. I was a scholar. I was a student of one of the prestigious school of Bombay. I was a merit holder in secondary school examination. The person who interviewed me on the radio asked me the routine question of my aim in life I asserted confidently and firmly in that live interview,

      " I will become a doctor and will settle in rural India."

 

       He pointed out sarcastically, " well! All declare this in their interview any way! It is a routine declaration. Nobody really take it seriously."

 

  I proved to be an exception. (Are you reading it Mr.?) 

 

When I ponder over those vernal years, I now perceive many things. The public library at my disposal in those days has been a major contributory factor in my being an author today. The librarian used to wave the rule aside to lend me two books at a time. Through these books, the great Christian Missionary Dr Albert Switzer beckoned me, since my childhood. One of the freedom fighters and Indian revolutionaries, MR Bhagat Singh captured my imagination from the biographical novel on him, titled 'Inqualab' (The Revolution). Jyoti, my wife too is the victim of this readers' culture. The same book influenced her. She is of opinion today, that the reading culture is the cause of our agony. If one does not read a lot, one does not become idealist and romantic. S/he walks on the earth, in his/her own selfish cocoon.  It is a fact that she alone had to endure my romantic adventurism. Any adventurism, how ever noble it is, if had been ventured with out having judged one's potential and capabilities, hurts and recoils. We both saw a movie recently on Bhagat Singh. We both cried watching it. (We agreed completely over some issue after a long period)

 

  "Why Bhagat Singh went to the hanging rope?' we cried. A stab of deep depression hit us. He did die for this country? We could not believe. Did he sacrifice for those who could now make money without a morsel of guilt in the coffins of the soldiers of the War?  For those who push the woman in the pyre of her dead husband even today? Bhagat Singh gladly accepted death to free India from the British Empire. It has become a norm even in rural India to enroll children in the school of English Medium. I am called a crackpot when I insist on education in vernacular language and when I act accordingly in the case of my daughters. Arrogant Selfishness rules every where today with no bars and without a ting of guilty conscious.  The last poor man of rural India who had been the cornerstone of the life and thinking of great Mahatma Gandhi hooks the wires of the state electric supply without any remorse and taps the electricity without paying a rupee. And naturally, the state electricity department becomes a bankrupt one. That person has an electric stove in his house for the simple reason that he procures free supply of electricity. It has been a curse in this country nowadays to have virtues like honesty and the quality of being able to perform. Ask for that matter, any businessman. He would agree. If the things are freely available in the retail-market which have bypassed the tax net, how the truthful companies who follow the rules and pay all the taxes could compete with them in price?  They can not.

 

      If you forgive me to use the words by great Marathi poet Gadima, I would say, this democratic and free country has become a one where,

 

   'There is a pyre of death for the one who is ethical and truthful to her husband when the prostitute is enjoying the fruits of happiness and glamour!' 

 

       I own something (for such) a society! These were my feelings and motivations. I had been possessed by these thoughts. If Bhagat Singh died to free India from oppressive British Rule, I must become a doctor and settle in a rural India where the need is. 

 

It was my dream. It was a first bend in my life. I opted for Medicine and not for engineering. At least twenty of my schoolmates are in USA today after having graduated from engineering colleges. In this remorse of having chosen Medicine as against engineering, I am not alone. Many of my friends who opted for Medicine are wondering about their decision. If one has the mathematical and logical aptitude, it is of no use in Medicine. Engineering would have been a far appropriate branch for us. In medicine, more than logic, the patience and dedication work. I joined College Of Bombay. And later got admission in one of the oldest medical colleges of India, The Grant Medical College of Bombay. It was an another mile stone in itself. My college and its Marathi literary society proved an asset for me. I used to write one act plays. My friend used to direct it in inters college competition. Of course, it was used to be booed by the audience! But a grand life it was! There was not a bit of bureaucracy in our college. All of teachers were themselves free to conduct their work, as they would like to. So, it was a pleasure for me to work under my teachers. I took gynecology for post graduation for the simple reason that surgical branch matters more in villages. I could not get General Surgery and hence had to accept Gynecology as the next choice. It is in long run a great mistake. A general surgeon can perform the gynecological operations and not vise versa. I am in a way quite useless to tackle other pressing needs in surgery. I would have waited and tried to get general surgery.

 

As I explained earlier, though my college was like a heaven, the system of examinations in medical education was rotten and oppressive. The atmosphere was suffocating.  The competition was cut throat. The coveted gold medals were generally reserved for the sons and daughters of the big bosses. Top class and intelligent students opt for the medical education. They come from a cream of the society. So naturally, the depression and frustration of not getting the well deserved gold medal was unbearable for many. For these well deserving intelligent students, the indignity and demeaning defeat proved to be a harsh reality. It was a shattering realization that intelligence and efforts have no value in medical exams.

Naturally, the depression and frustration was a rule. I was touched by the suicides of some sensitive and well deserving students whom I knew. These suicides and theses bosses formed the characters in my novel called Ghatachakra. (The vicious cycle). I used a different narrative style though not out of design. It was a sort of the style of a screen play writing modified in to a story telling.  It was a natural outcome. It became my own distinguishing style of story telling. My novel does not have a narrator. The story evolves through the scenes and happenings. The novel was returned with thanks from four different big publishers over the period of ten years. The main objection to it was regarding the new style. It was a thrilling fact for me that it appealed to one of the old timer critics. He himself gave the novel to one of the reputed publisher. This publishing company was known for its experimentation. But it too rejected the novel.  The old chap was taken aback by this refusal. But he comforted me that one day I would surely get a good publisher. The novel hooked my friends. Publishers were rejecting it though. I was quietly circulating it from one publisher to the another one. My friend Neelakanti wrote a screenplay on it meanwhile. One dramatist wrote a three-act drama on it called 'Close Heart surgery'. Many of the established artists of today's Marathi Theater were new comers then and had acted in that drama. It was staged for the State Competition. 

 

 

Meeting Baba Amte: An Encounter to Remember 

 

My journey of life continued. I got my post graduate degree. By now, I was involved in the family of Dr Albert Switzer from India. On my schoolmate's insistence, I visited Hemalkasa. His father had been in association with great social worker Baba Amte. Baba Amte is an atheist and Gandhian social worker. He is 86 years old. 50 years back when he was a successful lawyer and the president of a town's elected council, he noticed the leprosy patient along the side of a road. He could not touch him. That reality shattered him. He along with his wife, Sadhana Amte he decided to serve the leprosy patents. He raised a colony of leprosy patients, named it as Anandwan, meaning the place of joy. Here all those who were driven out of their homes gathered and produced agricultural products to earn their lives. Later his surgeon son and anesthetist daughter in law started a project at place called Hemalkasa in thick jungle and served tribal. The leprosy patients of Anandwan support the tribal. I visited Baba Amte's Anandwan and Hemalkasa project. Once I visited Hemalkasa, I became one of them by heart. Recently I received a letter from my friend over there. He levels me NRH like NRI. NRI means Non Resident Indian (The Indian who is not resident of India). NRH means Non Resident Hemalkasa. (The one from Hemalkasa who does not live in Hemalkasa.) 

 

Those were the days I would never forget. The project at Hemalkasa run by DR Prakash Amte and Dr Manda Amte is a project similar to the one run by DR Albert Switzer. 

 

Days of Atheism: Why Jesus did not kill the sinners instead? 

 

 

It was my beginning to know the world. Hemalkasa taught me the value of my presence as a doctor where none is available. One thing was clear and attractive to me as an atheist myself. 'I am involved in social service for my sake and not for God, not for any religion' was the motto of Hemalkasa. 

 

I remember it even today. Vilas Manohar, a worker from Hemalkasa was with me in Bombay that day. We were on a double Decker bus and were on our way back to my

home. That was twenty years back. 'Jesus died for the sinners.' Was the painted sentence somewhere on a side wall. We read it. Actually, Vilas Manohar, Dr Prakash Amte and Baba Amte were and are in opposition to the guns of the leftist violent groups fighting for the tribal. Still, we could not digest that sentence. Nor Vilas, neither me could agree with it. 'Why Jesus did not kill the sinners instead?" I asked aloud and we both laughed in agreement. Merrily we made a fun of that sentence. 

 

Marriage and Romanticism with Rural India 

 

After passing my post-graduation, I selected tribal province called Kinwat to settle. By now, I had married with Jyoti. It was an arranged marriage. I was not getting a wife. 'My destination is the village life' was my loud declaration and it was driving all prospective wives away from me. That utterance was startling their parents. One of the parents was probing still more and inquiring whether the reason behind this destination of mine was actually being the lack of funds! In that case, with dowry system prevalent in Indian marriages he was ready to take care of my investment in any city. Jyoti's uncle, was a dedicated teacher and head master of a well-known Bombay school. Her auntie, father and mother along with her uncle were in favor of an unusual doctor candidate like me. Jyoti too was thrilled by my romantic destination. And alas! She tied her knot with me. Her long journey of agony and displacement had begun. 

 

 

For me, becoming an author was now a secondary objective. I shoved my manuscript of the novel in the cupboard. As of today, I can now mull over on all my mistakes committed that time. I can now pinpoint the unrealistic belief in people's judgment, and my romantic adventurism as the most basic faults of my scheme. I had entered in the battle without any studious preparation. I lacked the necessary surgical skills to perform autonomously in most harsh conditions; I found it out to my dismay that the college experience was too inadequate, especially in the rural area where there is a shortage of every thing. No expert help was available at that place, the blood was not available, and the expectations of the patients from a private practitioner were unrealistic. 

 

 Only belief and hope would not be sufficient to support any mission of my nature. On economic front, the very project was a wishful thinking in the first place. Banks would charge the same interest on its loan, 16 percent in a city like Bombay and the same in Kinwat. Was then I in position to repay the loan at Kinwat? How economic pressure I could withstand? Was I ready to face shortage? Had I enough skill and guts to face the level of expectations one had to bear with? I did not think of any of these issues at the stake. It was my greatest shortcoming. Can I say that I was not forewarned by anybody? Sadly, I can not. None other than my wife, Jyoti, warned me. Jyoti being a woman was cautious. 

 

She was of the opinion that we should take a government service first in that very town. We should take the judgement of the nature of the practice we have to enter. Gradually and after much deliberation we should enter in private practice. But I overruled her. It was nothing but a male chauvinism. That too in the mask of revolutionary! I tried to hit a grand shot to the very first ball I faced. A fortuneteller was not required to tell the possible outcome. I named my project 'Biradari (Society) Project' drawing inspiration from Lok Biradari (Peoples society) project of Dr Prakash Amte. If I had evaluated Dr Prakash Amte's project objectively, I would have known that the primary strength of that project was in the free treatment it offered. Even now, it does not charge a cent from tribal. It is no wonder that the patients have some stake in accepting the guidance offered there. I overlooked this fact. Whether one charges 60 RS at Bombay or 3 RS at Kinwat, for the coming patient, both would be a shop merchants offering some medical advice as against their payment. Naturally, the market forces would apply, and that too without any commiseration. If the patient wants an injection as against his payment, and if you do not comply, he would not heed. He would turn to the next shop offering the service he is seeking. He does not give a damn to your sincerity, and honest intentions. I never foresaw this aspect of human nature. It was unexpected to me and it was not the fault of the patients, it was my childish belief, wishful thinking and immaturity. 

 

 

'It is not just enough to give opportunity and education. Man does not rejects his greed and beliefs just by education.' I had to learn this reality yet. And any way, even Russia had to learn it by that time. Mikhail Garbachao was yet to arrive on the horizon. So, it was not odd that I too was ignorant. Bible was saying clearly and without any ambiguity, 'Man is basically a sinner.' I was not ready to listen to it. It was just a dogma, religious dogma to me.

 

But by inserting, one's head in the sand like the ostrich does not prevent the storm. It was on the horizon. First, I lost my hope that a revolution would take place. After that, I lost my courage.  I left Kinwat. I sold my household in an open sale. My parents supported me. My father repaid the loan. He helped me to raise the hospital here at my present place Lasalgaon.

 

I had narrated all my story of Kinwat in the book called 'Kinwat Days'. Jyoti went to her parents and her college to pursue her degree in Anesthesia.I went to the government department to beg for a service. I had no resources except my degree for getting a job at Civil Hospital where my skill as a specialist would have been useful. Since the specialists get appointment at civil hospital not to serve the poor and needy at it, but to divert the patients from civil hospitals to their own private clinics, the bribe to get the appointment at Civil Hospital is in hundred thousands of Rupees. At least a recommendation from political bosses is a must. I had no recommendation nor I had money to bribe. So, the officer offered me a primary health center, which I accepted. I had no other alternative. Primary center is the tertiary center in health care pattern. It is just a sort of primary health care that is possible over it. Actually, postgraduate is useless there as it has no operation theater, anesthetist, staff and drugs. So, it was a waste to serve at that place. But I was helpless. I visited a small coastal town of Alibag, 120 km from Bombay on my way to the Primary Health center. I saw the board of

my senior friend, eight years senior and a colleague in Marathi literary society of my college. He is a pediatrician. I met him. He suggested one opening as a chief medical officer in a private hospital in Alibag.  I joined it happily, as there was at least a possibility here that I might practice my specialty. And for the management of that depilated hospital on verge of its last breadth, I was the only postgraduate who was willing to join at the salary they could afford. 

 

 Meeting Yeshu Bhakta’s: DR George and DR Roy Mathai 

 

Alibag turned out to be the second most important corner in my life. I met DR George and DR Roy Mathai and their believers group who had no Reverend, no Wooden cross, no register and who proclaimed themselves as Hindu Yeshu Bhakta. (Hindu Jesus devotee) I knew DR George as a legend when I was doing my post graduation. Every one in the medical college knows him. He is a founder member of MARD, Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors. He and the MARD are responsible for the betterment of working condition of the resident doctors. Before Mard fought courageously many years back, the resident doctors had to face slavery at the hands of the bosses. The pay was non existent. Working hours were unlimited. George and MARD changed it all for better. He is ten years senior to me. When he passed his MD, the degree was recognized abroad, especially in UK. His half of the batch mates left India to settle in UK. He thought other way. He came to the civil hospital at Alibag; a rural set up at that time, a sleepy small town at the seashore with no urban facilities.

 

He was the first Physician in the district. Naturally, somewhere our interests matched. Roy is a pediatric surgeon, as well as general surgeon. He was employed at an African country with a sound salary. One day he heeded to the gentle coaxing of Christ. He was more useful at Alibag for the patients and for the believers group. He left that glamour and money to join Alibag. I was lonely at Alibag. My quarters were of British age and architecture. The seashore was few meters away from it. I was wounded and was licking my wounds. I was disturbed. We had our small tea club in my lawns. I engaged myself with long fights with George. He had read a lot. One thing I realized and realized for good. The so-called principles for which sake I had fought at Kinwat were the same with George and Roy. But they were living the principled life far more smoothly and happily and easily.

 

While I had made a religion of my principles with a stubborn dogmatism and rigidity, they were living them far more naturally. They were not angry and frustrated with people at large in spite of their weakness. They were refusing to be defeated. They had joy. They had patience and a rare warmth and humility. One more point struck me. I was an atheist and was damn against religion and God. But it was just my own faith. It was nothing else. I was on equal footing with all others including George and Roy. While they had a faith that there is God, I too had a faith that there is none. There was no qualitative difference whatsoever in our attitudes. I had been baptized to atheism out of the conditioning at my home.  I had not taken vouch of atheism after having considered all other options with the same scrutiny. I had not read on the subject. The balanced comparison was far away; I had not even had a primary knowledge of what I was preaching. I had not asked even the basic questions to my own belief system. I had been the same one that I was alleging others to be; namely an orthodox atheist. I was a staunch orthodox atheist. So, I started reading. George was more than willing. He supplied me all material. I read Bhagawat Geeta as well. I read Holy Bible.

 

A change had been taking place in me from within. Meanwhile, I jumped to grab a new opportunity at near place called Roha. And finally I landed at my present habitat of last 13 years, Lasalgaon.  All was closely similar again at Lasalgaon. Like Kinwat, nothing more, nothing less. Once again, it was a rural set up. Over again, I was pursuing the same pipe dream. By now, Jyoti got fatigued with my wandering life. She was after just one thing. A permanent place and living. So, she surrendered to my insistence of practice at Lasalgaon. I was hitting my head against the wall again. But one thing was certain. In any case, I could not visualize myself in city-life practice.  

 

Tentacles of Market Forces 

 

Once more, what I confronted were the same market forces. Like Kinwat, here was the medical market similarly ruthless, greedy and unscrupulous. It was the same typecast of the patients who were not tired of their ignorance and who were happily succumbing to the lures of medical baits. The most horrifying realization was that of commission practice in medical field. I was not expecting it rural place. It was prevalent in cities.

 

If a postgraduate is ready to cough up some percentage of his earning out of the treatment offered to the patient, then only the general practitioner is willing to refer patient to the post-graduate. The greed had reached here too. It is a rule in city. Of course, a few exceptions prove this rule. In addition to the necessity of having to fight the corrupt commission practice one more shattering reality awaited for me in rural region. Being a gynecologist and not being a general surgeon, I had just two skills in my possession as a postgraduate.  Until I settled at Lasalgaon, they were available to the patients in the city and Lasalgaon had lacked them. I had voluntarily selected Lasalgaon to offer those services specifically.  

 

One skill was — the ability to perform Caesarian operation. Here I was stumped completely. Patients dete

sted Caesar. One reason was it was costly affair compared to normal delivery. Second was that Caesar renders the patient useless for heavy fieldwork at the farms at least for some months. The third most important point was that the Caesar restricts the number of babies to three. Here people wanted to go to any number of deliveries required until they have a boy. Many a times, until they have at least two boys.  The sum was I was the most unwanted doctor. The one who must be kept at a long distance.

 

So, when it was required to come to me and get Caesar done, the occasion was of a great distress. The gratitude was lacking, and what I had to face instead was the curse. In the eyes of the patients and their relatives I was the criminal who had done the most unwanted job, the cesarean operation.My second skill was to remove the uterus. Here the situation was of another extreme. Near by the surgeons have shaped an altogether different milieu. They were interested in turnover as far as the hysterectomy operation was concerned. At the slightest instance of complains like white discharge these surgeons were frightening the patients with dire consequences like cancer if they dared to neglect and hence forcing the patients for hysterectomies.

 

So there was a fear psychosis and the same poor patients who were cursing me for an emergency life saving caesarian operation were running to the hospitals with the stacks of money in their hands to get the un-indicated operation of removal of the uterus done. And since the hospitals were functioning with the sole aim of increasing the turnover, they were charging minimum too. A great social service rendered to the poor by those capitalist surgeons! I was the culprit who was rejecting the patients bent on having uterus removed for the so-called ethics of not doing un-indicated surgeries.

 

So, I had to accept defeat at this end too. The final aggregate was, I really had no purpose left to be at Lasalgaon. My noble dream of offering the rural patients my service destroyed from within. The same old story was getting repeating like that of Kinwat. But my book called 'Lasalgaon Days' was not forthcoming. I was to write this autobiography from Lasalgaon instead. I was changing. I was changing from within, thanks to this devastating destruction. My change was subtle and gradual. I could not notice it myself when it was occurring. The fact that even though pressed with the same insurmountable problems, and social evils, I was not getting defeated. However the things were looking dim, I was holding my ground. I was shouting, groaning and was getting depressed.

 

But I was not opting the other easy way out. Just one simple nod. Just one simple nod to the commission practice and all was so easy. So easy that I would soon be flooded with all those patients whom I seek so desperately. One simple to the un-indicated operations and the same patients who were running with money to the unscrupulous surgeons to get uterus removed at the age of 23/24, would have been flocking my door. It was very tempting alternative. Daily I faced the struggle and how ever tired and fatigued I am, the next morning would be a fresh one with patience, hope and dedication.

 

I was not leaving the battle as I had at Kinwat. The books were helping me. At night when all the fight seems to have been over in a defeat, I go to my consulting room downstairs, shut the door and reach for the life-sustaining stream. One of the persons God used to nurture me was DR Paul Brand.

 

To be continued…

 

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  1. Being a doctor myself I could relate to and understand the subject quite well.

    Eagerly awaiting the next article replete with valuable lessons a young doctor like me can learn from.

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