​A letter to non medico from a medico friend

Dear friend,

Remember me? Yes, I am that same guy/girl who used to be humiliated at times for studying rather than playing, for choosing books over looks. 

I used to see you every day through my window playing football while I was cramming my biology lessons on frogs and cockroaches (courtsey: medical entrance exam pattern).

I remember, you got admission in some IIT or NIT or may be IIIT or may be a fancy DU college. Despite Studying so much, i couldn’t clear medical entrance in the first attempt. I hope you are aware that the competition here is very stiff. 

After one or may be two or may be three attempts, I enter a medical college just to realise that the real struggle now starts. By the time, you are halfway through your degree I am still in my initial years of college, trying to figure out why the hell I prepared for medical entrances! 

While I was busy dating those voluminous books in one and a half year long second professional, you were preparing for your job interviews along with the routine fun of a college life.

When I reached third professional, you had already secured a handsome package and some among you even flew away to US for a dream job.

When I completed my MBBS, I was already 25. I thought my struggle was now over. But I was told that the real struggle has just began. After battling over 19 subjects, a hundred exams and reading countless books, I realised that the degree is of no worth unless I do my post graduation. By this time you are switching jobs to get higher enumeration. 

I start preparing for PG Entrances. Same 19 subjects, but this time along with MCQ books for each subject and coaching notes. Here again, the competition is stiff. After an attempt or two, I manage to get a branch of my choice. Some are not lucky. They have to take a branch they don’t like, because they have to, there is no option. There are many who are still struggling to get that seat.

By this time you are planning to buy yourself a car or a flat from your own salary, and I have just started earning now at the age of 26 or 27. 

The real struggle, as they always say, now begins. Straight 24,36,48 hrs duties multiple times in a week. Whether I am a girl or a guy, doesn’t matter. Whether I have had food in the last 24 hours, doesn’t matter. My family, my life, my love, my feelings…doesn’t matter. Holi, Diwali, Rakshabandhan, my birthday, any special occasion… Doesn’t matter! Whether I am being physically assaulted or abused while on duty… Doesn’t matter!

I get ripped apart on rounds by my seniors and consultants as the reports for the blood sample I took, did not came…For any job that wasn’t my responsibility, was not done. 

I make sure that the orderly and nursing staff do their jobs. Many a times I have to run to get blood for the patient or arrange a trolly or bargain for the closest date for any investigation that is required for the patient. 

When Patient’s own attendants run away from giving blood to the patient, I have to go to the medical officer requesting him to sanction blood for the patient. However the same attendants appear like vultures around a dead body, when that patient dies. Their emotions rise up and they make me their punching bag. 

I am in consistent contact with deadly diseases including TB ( including MDR and XDR varities), HIV, Hepatitis B and C and Swine flue. Many of my colleagues in different parts of the country have got infected with these diseases and some have even lost their lives. ( No! That doesn’t count as martyrdom. We are anti national breeds.)

There might be diseases, medical sciences has currently no clue about and hence no preventive measures for the same. May be decades later, I’ll again pay the price of choosing medicine as a career option after I am found to be affected with those diseases, like doctors of our previous generation are now found to be having hepatitis infection.(Again! No compensation and medical insurance)

This time I really don’t know what you are upto, because I am so immersed in my duties that I have no clue where my own life is going. 

Then comes super speciality and I repeat the same round of overburdened and hectic residency for next three years. At the age of 32-33, finally I get the chance to work in private hospitals as a consultant, with some decent salary. 

But now I have my family. I need a home. My hairs have all turned grey. Now I need to earn to feed my family and maintain the standards the society expects from a doctor.

Corporate hospitals work like any other multinational companies, where you people work as managers. Only difference being that while you create diseases (Courtesy: PepsiCo, ITC, Kingfisher et al), I save you from the same. Both work for their profit and we are mere employee. 

I often read your updates where I find you engaged in corporate parties  in five stars (No! There are no hospital parties. There are CMEs sponsored by pharma companies. There as well, we go to learn and have some fun. However, media has issues with that as well).

You can afford to have overpriced popcorn and coke in a multiplex cinema. But, when you go to visit a doctor for consultation, you have issues with the ‘rates’ charged by him. (To remind you, lawyers charge 2-3 Lacs per hearing. How do we know that? Courtesy: Our examination system and policies, we often have to fight against)

At times, you take consultations directly from the pharmacist or a quack. But when you come to visit me, you make sure that you have done whole research on your illness. (Courtesy: Google) In your attempt to impress me with your half baked knowledge, you really piss me off. 

Meanwhile, sometimes when I get time to read a newspaper, I read the following articles which makes my blood boil.

  • Doctor beaten by a mob. ( In Hindi newspaper, it reads: Doctor ko dauda dauda kar sadak  par peeta. How sensitive! Well done people. We deserve that!)
  • A resident doctor commits suicide. (Stress! Failure in examination!)
  • Nation wide exit test for MBBS passouts before practice. (A 10th fail quack can prescribe what an MBBS cannot!)
  • Compulsory rural service for doctors. ( JNU wale netagiri kare, DU wale modelling. Engineering wale private jobs ya phir US. Bas ek hum hain jinhe dharti maa ka bojh utarna hai, woh bhi bina kisi facility ke!)
  • Baba Ramdev claims to cure cancer and HIV. (Holy Shit!)
  • A 21 year old fresh graduate from IIT/DCE/Fancy DU college gets 1 crore package from a US firm. (Media goes gaga over it. What a proud moment! Will work to effectively manage a firm so that they mint out maximum possible money out of your pocket)
  • An editorial on how the doctors are minting out money from general public.

It’s not just a rant against daily physical assaults on the doctors. It’s just small glimpse of our life. It’s not just another 9-4 job. Yes there are some people doing unscrupulous things, but that happens in every field.

Do you know why we still love our profession, because It’s satisfying to see the results of your knowledge when a patient’s life is saved. At the same time we can’t save a patient who has no chances or if we do not have the appropriate setup for adequate care of the patient or if there is severe shortage of doctors (courtesy: government you voted for).

But why I am telling you all this stuff. Why should you be concerned at all? 

So that before going to a doctor, you have an idea what it takes to be one. 

So that you treat him as a human being, just a human being. Nothing more, nothing less. 

So that, one fine day, when your kid comes up to you and tells you that he wants to be a doctor, you can tell him straight away this is how the doctors are treated in this country.

Don’t save the doctors, Save yourself!

Pick courtesy: Laughing Doses (Dr Ganesh Choudhari)

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AIIMS Flyover : Chillar Kavita 

Dhaula kuaan se Safdarjung sath chale

Khade rahe satak ke

ek doosre ko sambhale

Mudrika ki bheed mein 

Socha tha sath

Nizamuddin jayenge

Train pakad ke

door kahiin bhaag jayenge

Phir achanak se AIIMS flyover aa gaya

Confusion mein rahein bichhad gayi.

Main Dilli haat ko pohoch gaya,

Tum south ex nikal gayi.

Barapullah hamein phir Mila dega

Tum dheeraj rakhna

Das minute mein pohoch jaunga

Bas intezaar karna

ISBT, Station sab jagah dhoondha

Phir kisi ne kaha, Gadi to nikal gayi

Use shopping karni thi shadi ki

Isliye Lajpat Nagar utar gayi

Sab mile hue hain jee,

Infrastructure bol ke khoob kamate hain

Sapno si raahon mein,

uljhe hue flyovers banate hain! 

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अगले जन्म में!

उदय प्रकाश जी की कविता “चलो कुछ बन जाते हैं”, फिल्म ‘आँखो देखी’ के climax और कुछ काल्पनिक सी लगने वाली सच्ची गाथाओँ से प्रेरित!

अगले जन्म में 

तुम को रसगुल्ला बहुत पसंद है न!
चलो मैं अगले जन्म में छेना बन जाऊँगा
कहीं पर मलमली, कहीं पर खुरदुरा, कहीं सख्त, कहीं दबदबा 
तुम गुड़ हो जाना
घुला देना अपनी सारी मिठास मुझमें, खीच लेना मुझसे यह श्वेत रंग, बना देना मटमैला

गर्मी की धूप में मटके में भर कर कोई मिठाई वाला ले जा रहा होगा हमें किसी मेले में बेचने के लिये. तब किसी छोटे से बच्चे के मुंह खोलते ही हम घुल कर सदा के लिये एक हो जायेंगे.

हाँ, और फिर कुछ के कुछ बन जायेंगे!

अच्छा तो ऐसा करते हैं, मैं अगले जन्म में कील बनुंगा और तुम बन जाना एक portrait. सालों तक टंगे रहेंगे एक ही दीवार पर. परीवार की कितनी पीढ़ीयाँ हमें पूजेंगी, सोचो!

और अगर तुमहारी तरह परीवार के किसी शेहज़ादे ने आपना धर्म ही बदल लिया तो?

तो फिर मैं कस्तूरी मृग बन जाऊंगा और तुम मेरे अंदर की सुगंध. मैं उम्र भर तुम्हें ढूँडने की acting करूँगा

अच्छा, अगर तुम्हें कोई दूसरी गंध आकर्शित कर गयी तो?

तो ऐसा करना, तुम algae बन जाना और मैं fungus
मैं निचोड़ लूँगा रस , तुम बानाना उससे खाना
lichen बन कर इन चट्टानों को फिर हरा भरा कर देंगे

कोई कुरेद ले हमें और बना दे अम्ल का मानक, फिर क्या करोगे?

यह घड़ी भी किसी litmus test से कम है भला? चलो फिर अगले जन्म में हम हम ही रहेंगे, तुम तुम ही रहना. हमारे बीच जो भी दीवारें होंगी, सब तोड़ कर आ चलेंगे पहाड़ों के बीच और डूब जायेंगे  इन हवाओँ में गोते खाते हुए!

तो चलो, 1 2 और 3…….अरे, तुम कहां रह गयी पीछे? मंज़िल कितनी नज़दीक है, देखो! 

सामने वाले पहाड़ पर भी इंतज़ार कर रहा है कोई मेरा, मुझे जाना होगा. किसमत ने चाहा तो हम फिर मिलेंगे, पहाड़ की इसी चोट पर, अगले जन्म में!

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Who Hates the Aam Aadmi Party?

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10 things which often make a medical student frustrated!

1. One of your (caring) relatives in home town: “Aur beta kya kar rahe ho?” 

MBBS kar raha hu Uncle..First Year (with a proud smile)

Uncle (after lot of thinking) : Achha beta, (Specialization) KISME kar rahe ho?

“Woh to abhi nahi, 4 ½ saal baad jab MBBS ho jaegi na..(bina back lage) , Tab internship hogi ek saal ki…uske baad, ek entrance hoga. Agar usmein select ho gaye to counselling mein bulaya jaayega. Depending on rank, branch milegi”

Uncle (confused): Bohot achha Beta..man lagake padna.

Next year…

(Same) Uncle: Aur beta, Doctor ban gaye?

Next to Next year..

(Same) Uncle: “Abhi kitna time baaki hai

Many more years later…

“Huh! Finally!! Ho gaya PG mein…Aane do uncle ko, batata hoon!”

Uncle is no more 😀


2. Being first doctor in family, you are often liable to receive calls from unknown far off relatives.

Uncle:  “Beta mere dil ki dhadkan achanak se tez ho jati hai………blah blah blah….

“Uncle aap doctor ko dikha di jiye”

Uncle: Wo to dikha diya..unhone ye dawa likhi hai…blah blah..

“Haan to uncle theek hai, khaa lijiye”

Uncle: Achha beta, khali pet ya khane ke sath.

“Uncle, doctor ne bola hoga na”

Uncle: Unhone bola, din mein do baar lena hai khane ke baad.

“Theek hai uncle, khane ke baad hi kha lijiye”


3. That belief among your engineering friends that if you are a medical student, then you MUST be having a girlfriend!

4. When you get to know that a friend, who used to play cricket outside your home almost daily while you were dating those voluminous medical entrance books, has graduated from Just Another Engineering College and has started earning handsome salary. All this, when you are still studying shit things like types of toilets from PARK.

5. Case Examination: Even after narrating every possible point in patient’s history (copying from book word to word), when the consultant says “Aur Batao!!” , “No..this thing won’t come in HOPI…you can add this in personal history instead..”, “Is this the way to take history? Kabhi clinical postings lagayi bhi hain?”

6. When a psychopath friend (most probably an Engineer!) asks you about your EXPERIENCE of being posted in Obs & Gynae Department.

7. An unwritten rule which patients all across India seem to follow: Every lady in white lab coat is a “Sister”.

8. In emergency duty, with a long list of canula and HUSE in hand, you are running around searching for a patient…You are calling his name but he’s not responding. And after you find him, you have to tolerate his temper-tantrums!

“khoon chahiye, jaldi baazoo oopar karo”

Patient : Kitna khoon loge? kal hi to liya tha!

“Jaanch honi hai, tumhare khoon ko peete nahi hain hum log!

Patient: Pehle se hi kamzor hain..Aise roz roz Khoon nikaloge to mar hi jayenge!


9. When government policies and court decisions decide your future. NEET or AIPG? DNB or AIIMS?  Rural Posting: Mandatory or Voluntary?

And the most frustrating one (almost Suicidal):

10. Cramming KALAAM!

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Film Analysis: “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”

The Cinephile Fix


Every couple of years I stumble upon a film that transcends its traditional entertainment purposes and goes for something more divine, ambitious and philosophical. When a film like this comes along, it reassures me that film is indeed the greatest art form of our time. Movies that had that awe-inspiring effect on me include: “Last Year At Marienbad”, “The Exterminating Angel”, “Persona”, “2001: A Space Odyssey”, “Dark City”, “Enter the Void”, “The Thin Red Line”, “Eyes Wide Shut” and “Synecdoche, New York”. I like to call them life-changers.

The first time I watched Michael Gondry’s “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” it felt like a life changer. I remember the night I saw it, too. I couldn’t sleep all night due to perpetual thoughts rushing through my head. I used to experience that during the last minutes of an exam I couldn’t finish on time. That night, I needed more…

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The Hindu publishes article on PMT Gurumantra in its Periscope section


Fed up with how coaching institutes misguide students wanting to enrol for medical colleges, an intern with the Safdarjung Hospital in the Capital, from Vardhaman Mahavir College started a website to help the students find their feet in the search for the right college.

Offering help to both PMT (Pre Medical Test) and NEET (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test) aspirants, PMT Gurumantra was launched by Dr Rahul Chawla in 2011. It helps candidates with examination details, study material and previous years’ papers.

“The website saves one from splurging on coaching institutes, many of which only want to mint money,” says Rahul.

As of now, the website has answered the queries of 3000 students and over 5000 students preparing for medical entrances are associated with it. It also has a forum of medical students, who were toppers in various…

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