For all those who were waging a grim battle at the fag end of their lives, the cricketing great's presence had a sobering influence on them with words of encouragement even while appreciating the efforts of Sparsh Hospice at Khajaguda here.
“I always consider the medical profession as the greatest of all given the way they are always on call 24x7. And to lend a helping hand for these ladies and gentlemen at his centre, ensure them a caring touch, pat on the back are something which they badly need,” Sunil Gavaskar commented after a visit around the centre on Sunday, hours before he was to don the role of a TV commentator for the third and final India-Australia T-20 international match.
“These are such important gestures at this stage of someone’s life. I sincerely appreciate all those who chipped in their own way. This is truly a fantastic initiative,” the former India captain said.
“I always believe giving gives more satisfaction than taking. These are heartening efforts which have such a soothing effect on them,” Mr. Gavaskar said amidst applause from the select gathering.
“We must acknowledge the way the doctors, nursing staff and all the volunteers make sure that these patients are taken care of so well,” he said.
Interestingly, Mr. Gavaskar revealed that he wanted to be a doctor and was often taken to his aunt (who was a medical practitioner). “I did visit quite regularly but somehow became a cricketer,” he said.
“Well, being a cricketer and having represented India for 17 long years with a sense of pride and privilege, I was bestowed with Doctorates by five Universities later on,” Mr. Gavaskar said. “So, I am also a doctor with a difference,” he quipped amidst cheers.
Later, the great cricketer presented certificates to the Club members including Dr. M. Subrahmanyam, Trustee, Head of Anaesthesia Rainbow, Jagadish Ramadugu (Trustee), Prabhakar Dhulipudi (president, Rotary Club of Banjara Hills) who contributed about ₹ 2.5 cores for setting up the Hospice Centre on a site allotted by the Telangana State Government in 2017.
By all means, there were moments to cherish for those who assembled for the occasion and got a glimpse of the original “Little Master” of world cricket.