Heroism of different hues on display in Amritsar

By Ambuj Saxena

It was a lazy day as I woke up in my room in the holy city of Amritsar. Soon, there was a knock on my door and my warm and hospitable host cum Bed and Breakfast (BnB) owner served me tea with a smile. Last night, we had met but we enjoyed interacting with each other and talked till late into the night like long lost buddies. Being a retired IPS officer, he told me about his professional experiences and how he had nabbed a shrewd criminal. His life fascinated me but I knew that it was tough to live! Intrigued by his profile, I asked him why he had chosen to register a Bed and Breakfast property. He said “I love to interact with people and serve them”. A simple line that answered all my queries. We shared our varied experiences and plans in life. I also shared with him my plans for the next few days, that is, to make arrangements for an event which would felicitate my idol.

As I closed the door behind him, I checked my watch and realized that I was running late for the Indian Medical Association (IMA) conference! Oh yes the conference that BnBNation was assisting as accommodation provider! I had to get ready within 45 minutes and reach the venue and receive all the guests and help make all the necessary arrangements.

bed and breakfast, homestay
A sumptuous breakfast served with a smile is the best way to kickstart your day

I asked my BnB host for an early breakfast as I had to travel 15 kilometers to reach the venue and take care of the preparations. He received my request with a smile and prepared my breakfast even before I could bathe!

While, I savoured the Aloo ka Paranthas, and curd and Orange juice, my BnB host who could sense the urgency, arranged a cab online for me from his home to the venue. Soon, I was off to the venue and that too, in nick of time! As I sat in the car and waved goodbye to my BnB Host, I smiled to myself and realized that such gestures of my BnB host such as arranging a breakfast without any delay and booking a cab on his own, were instrumental in saving a lot of my time in the morning. Such urgency and gestures could have been sensed only by a real well wisher.

As time passed by while making arrangements at the venue, I realized that the Indian Medical Association staff was up and ready with most of the arrangements and Mr. Sanjay seemed a cool captain who ensured the nitty gritty details of the arrangements didn’t go wrong.

Author with Padma Shree Dr. KK Aggarwal, the President of IMA.

The conference where Dr KK Aggarwal, a Padma shri awardee- the fourth highest civilian award of India and Dr BC Roy awardee , was taking over the reins of IMA as its President. As usual, he seemed at ease with the elaborate arrangements. I had never seen him lose his temper. The outgoing IMA President was full of praise for the new team and wished it luck before pointing out the pertinent issues that faced IMA. As I started talking to the guests, I sensed the mood of guests was very welcoming towards the new team of IMA. They boasted of his commitment and devotion to medical profession and work ethics of Dr. KK Aggarwal and how he had been working tirelessly towards taking IMA to newer heights. He was fondly referred to as the ‘Digital Man of IMA’ as he was active on Twitter, had been writing blogs (http://blog.kkaggarwal.com) tirelessly and capable of giving established bloggers a run for their money.


In the same vein, people of medical fraternity praised wisdom of Dr. R N Tandon (Honorary Secy General), financial expertise of Dr. VN Monga (Honorary Finance Secretary), and administrative acumen of Dr Ashwini Dalmiya, Dr. Vinod Khetarpal and Dr. Anil Goel, who were sworn in as Honorary Joint Secretaries. The entire combination of new team members seemed gritty to fight the menace of lifestyle diseases and to reduce India’s global burden of diseases. The team was inclined to make IMA strong digitally. The present team is a heady combination of people who are strong on professional grounds and add a humane touch to their medical practice.

The incoming team of Indian Medical Association (IMA)The incoming team of Indian Medical Association (IMA)~
The incoming team of Indian Medical Association (IMA) with the author (2nd from right)

While taking oath as the new President of IMA, Dr KK Aggarwal’s speech was full of new and innovative ways and campaigns to tackle medical issues faced by Indians. The highlight of his speech was involvement of all sections of population to spread awareness about various diseases and to save the citizens’ hard earned money from going into catastrophic healthcare costs.

Here is the video of Dr KK Aggarwal’s enthralling speech in front of a packed crowd: http://bit.ly/2jilAOS

The new team, brimming with confidence, solicited the cooperation of the doctors and medical practitioners present at the event to relieve India of avoidable diseases.

Cultural Heritage of India on display: 


Gatka: Traditional form of combat training performed by Sikh community

After the oath taking ceremony, there was a cultural event that consisted of Gatka, a form of combat training developed by the Sikhs in which wooden sticks are used as swords in sparring matches. It aims at the coordination of mind & body through the meditation of spiritual verses of Gurbani. It is a holistic system by which the character and moral attitude of a practitioner is shaped. Gatka can be practiced as a sport or as a ritual. The crowd was enthralled to the core as it witnessed the art on display.


Relevance of Gatka:

Today Gatka has become common and there are various clubs in Britain in Southall, Birmingham, Nottingham etc. Research shows that in 1984 when the Golden Temple was attacked by the Indian Army, four Singhs stood at each of the doors of the temple, swinging their Shasters (full length swords) in a basic movement from the Gatka and nobody could come within a 10 metre range!

Isn’t the cultural heritage of India incredible? Such instances of bravery, masculinity, hospitality and benevolence as enumerated through out the blog are tough to be found in any other country. Isn’t it?

Let us know your views in the comment box below.

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About Ambuj Saxena:

Ambuj Saxena is Co-Founder at BnBNation. He is a 2013 Brand Management graduate from Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad (MICA). He has successfully executed various online and offline marketing campaigns for companies operating in Automobile, Fashion and Lifestyle, Travel and Tourism sectors as well as Government departments. He has co-founded BnBNation as he believes that Tourism and Hospitality is as much online as it is offline, and he can add value to both.


One thought on “Heroism of different hues on display in Amritsar

  1. An excellent blog by Ambuj Saxena which covers BnB stay, a preferred accomodation to understand local culture, cuisines, places to be visited but not covered in commercial itineraries and specific info which could be shared generally in a hosted accomodation. Besides this, all info abut Tajposhi of our dear friend Dr KK agarwal as President of IMA and traditional GATKA of Sikh tradition is covered in a narrative manner.

    Liked by 1 person

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