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  • Writer's pictureAdil Malia

Dr.Bhagwat eats Pani-puri

Every Bombay neighborhood had its family Doctor. Ours was Dr. Bhagwat

Dr.Bhagwat was a leisurely doctor. Always in white, never in hurry. Post the detailed check-up with his stethoscope (those days Drs used Stethscopes & not hung it round their necks like film stars), his sermon on hygiene, food etc began. In Mom's presence 'Eat only at Home' session got extended. Sounded like synchronised conspirarcy

Our neighbour Mr.A was a lawyer. He had friends in the Police

One day, Dr.Bhagwat came home.Was sweating. Dad heard him & took him to Mr.A. Someone had picked Drs pocket.Legal-eagle A started interrogations. What happened, how, where etc.

Dr Bhagwat was hesitating to speak. More when mom came. Finally, he sheepishly spoke. He lost his wallet with Rs. 5000/- in it. It happened under the 'pipal' tree where he went after closing the dispensary

Before Mr.A could ask the next question, the potential little lawyer in me jumped to ask - why did you go to the Pipal tree? How many plates did you order with Bhola's ?? Pipal tree had only one tenant - Bhola the Pani-Puriwalla!

Dad squeezed my arm tight. Our dear Dr.Health was devouring Pani-puris at Bholas & was so lost in the magical melting of the taste that he did not realise, someone picked his wallet

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