Ratan Gajwani

From a little boy playing on the banks of the Indus river in Sind, Pakistan, to a medical student at JJ Hospital, to an anesthetist and medical practitioner in Bandra and now a retired storyteller, I am fortunate to have lived life on my own terms.

Sun Sign

Gemini

What’s your greatest fear?

Any harm coming to my children.

What is your greatest achievement?

With no money, as a refugee from Pakistan, I could settle myself and bring up my family in India.

High point of your life?

I graduated as a medical doctor.

Low point of your life

When I was diagnosed with thyrotoxicosis.

Who is your favorite fictional hero?

The “Common Man” in R.K. Lakshman’s cartoons in Times of India.

Who are your favorite authors?

Somerset Maugham, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Shakespeare, VS Naipaul

What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

Bhagvad Gita

Is there a book you love to reread?

Bhagvad Gita

What are your 5 favorite movies of all time?

Andaz, Aarti, Barsat, Anand

One Superpower you wish you had?

To read people’s minds

Your epitaph would read? /Last line in your biography would be?

Lived, Loved, Lost

If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

Ability to judge people.

Which book you wish you had written ?

Razor’s Edge by Maugham.

When and where do you write ?

Staring at the sea from my balcony.

Silence or music?

Silence.

One phrase that you use most often?

Jeene ka bahaana mat kar!

Do you have a writing ritual / superstition?

No.

Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

Jump right in!

Dr. Ratan Gajwani was born in Rohri, Sindh, where he was educated in the Sindhi vernacular. After the Partition of India, as with most Sindhi Hindus, he came to Bombay, where he studied medicine. He is a self-taught Hindi speaker. He learned Hindi, by buying and studying a primer, as it was India's national language. Throughout the years, he has gained a strong understanding of languages and has a working knowledge of Hindi and Urdu, besides Sindhi, and English. After completing his medical education and a fellowship in anesthesiology in 1957, he worked at several hospitals in India. In 1972, he had to leave anaesthesiology, due to health problems. He has been practicing as a family physician in Bombay, for over 40 years. In discussing his literary interests, Dr. Gajwani mentioned, Doctors have windows open in many houses. They have the privilege of studying life in the raw. The undercurrents of love and hate in many families are clear to them. I have drawn on some of these to make up stories of my own. Thus, many of my stories have a medical background. Dr. Gajwani has two children and four grandchildren and lives with his wife in Mumbai, India.

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