Skip to main content

Bharatbhai, Bharatbhai, Bharatbhai And Bharatbhai – My Kutch Tour Diary

Our recent tour of Kutch landed an interesting coincidence. I (Dr Bharat Desai), my wife Dr Bhavana, and our friends Dr Vijay Desai, his wife Meena Desai, Bepsi-ben and Villoo-ben made three nights and four days plan for Kutch - Bhuj.
I contacted Dr Bharat Chhimpi of Bilimora having close relatives in Bhuj. He guided us in detail giving the tour plan, staying facility and transport arrangement. In turn, he contacted his advocate brother-in-law Bharatbhai at Bhuj who organized everything including a vehicle for local commuting – an Innova owned by Bharatbhai Vankar. Little too many Bharat's in this small world.

Talking about this article, I would like to tell you about our journey and experiences. Instead of history and geography of the place, I want to tell about my emotions and interactions with the localities.

Rayjibhai Ravjibhai Rabari – at Hiralakshmi Park, Bhujodi

A tea and food serving aged person, Rayjibhai, talked and behaved so nicely with us, we will always remember him. Two sons of Hiralakshmi-ben constructed an art exhibition centre and a garden. They invite and host Kutchhi artists in different trades like Bandhani workers, Shoemaker, Metalwork artist and similar others, and allow them to prepare and sell goods for one full month. Bhujodi has many localities doing household work to prepare Shawl. Bandhani and bed sheets.

Dudhabhai Meena – at 72 Jeenalaya, Mandavi

Dudhabhai Meena of Dhangadhra drawing multiple imaginative designs on the pillars and walls of a very huge temple – 72 Jeenalaya – for last 18 years. His assistants do carving under his guidance.

Rickshaw Drivers Mohammad and Mushtaq – at Bhuj

We did Bhuj city tour in Mohammad and his brother Mustaaq’s new 6-seater rickshaw. After our day-long visit to local destinations like Museum, Palace, Aina Mahal, Lake, Hill Garden, Aquarium, Tridev Temple, Swami Narayan Temple and Bhujiyo Dungar with them, and after hearing our dialogue with one another, Mohammad told us ‘Ronak aavi gayee!’ (Your company delighted our day!) I like to take it as a great compliment to our group.

Parsot Bapa – at Kheta Bapa Temple

A very huge statue of Lord Hanuman with the statues of all the other Gods and Goddesses and sons, with multiple pictures all around the temple, is worth seeing while going to Koteshwar. We got to meet Parsot Bapa, 9th generation person from Kheta Bapa dynasty, with some great conversations and his guidance us on the way of life.

Dholo Rann (White Desert) and Kaala Dungar

1515 Feet high heel of Kaala Dungar gives an eye-pleasing view of the White Desert and the sea nearby. This picturesque view is just another wonder of the Mother Nature. We are often misled by the name ‘White’ Desert as a desert having white sand; please do check, it is not the case. It is a dessert formed due to white crystalized salt found on the land due to drying of the sea water. In reality, it is a ‘salt’ desert, also known as ‘Khaarapat’ in South Gujarat. The only difference being the size – the White Desert is 100 x 200 Sq. Miles in area. It does not stop at your field of vision – miles long.

Haji Peer.

Dr Vijay Desai and Meena did want to visit and pray at Haji Peer. On hearing the story of Haji Peer, practically we all got emotional.

Khavda Sweets – Gulaab Paak, Adadiya and Pakwan.

Khavda - a village near Bhuj – has many cattle owners preparing Maava and its sweets. Interestingly, each and every shop in Bhuj, claims to be an authentic Khavda Sweet Shop. Localities say Gulaab Paak (made from rose petals), Adadiya (a sweet containing Udad Daal, dried ginger and 32 other ingredients) and Pakwan (a dried wheat flour item) are the specialities of this region. Sadly, I did not enjoy any of them.

Gujarat Earthquake 2001.

We met many people at Kutch telling us their memories of disastrous earthquake of 2001. I must mention a few.

Dr Hansa Dave, my wife’s classmate in school and coincidentally my classmate in pre-science college. Interestingly she too led to become an Eye Surgeon, just like me. He husband Dr Jadish Dave told us about how they spent six months in tents and the story of relatives of 25,000 dead people. No doubt, progress that followed was pleasant.

Dr Jasmin P Savani – Superintendent of the aquarium of Hill Garden, Bhuj – showed us the rift (a fissure or a cleft) of 50 feet in depth in rocks at village Ratiya. Only seeing is believing - an earthquake destroyed nearly total Kutch district in general and Bhuj, Bhachau and Raapar in particular. Kutch is the biggest district in India, comprising one-third land of Gujarat state.

A shopkeeper of Anjaar narrated the whole event of the earthquake, how he bore the loss of seven family members out of 32.

Driver Bharat Vankar showed us an earthquake affected temple.

37th Marriage Anniversary Celebration.

Our marriage anniversary celebration at the bell ring of 12 midnight in the train compartment was a completely unanticipated event. 4th March 2013 was our 37th Marriage Anniversary. Dr Vijay-bhai, Meena, Bepsi-ben and Villoo-ben had planned a great surprise for us. They arranged an anniversary cake and hid it from us till midnight for a surprise. Ceremoniously all of us gathered and cut the cake. Quite unusually for most others, we distributed the cake to the all awake passengers of the compartment. They all happily joined and celebrated the event in such a novel way.

Amitabh Bachchan and the Chief Minister Narendra Modi have made us desirous to visit Gujarat. Has reading this article added to your craving for Kutch?


  1. Very nice Bharatbhai. Your writing is real good

    1. This is the most worthy comment...
      I noticed it today.
      I am happy you read myarticle.


Post a Comment

Optionally, you can also email your feedback directly to the author.

Trending This Month

Rahul & Shivani's Wedding

Whatever smartness or intelligence one has, to decide the probable attitude of future partner is difficult. So for the continuation of a marriage, adjustment and compromises are must, compulsory.

One has to marry because the law does not allow man-woman physical relations at random and society has laid certain norms of man-woman staying together. Though liberate present-day scenario allows live-in relations and physical relationship without much fuss, marriages are unavoidable.

Once decided to marry, the second question arising is the method – the technique of the wedding. How many persons to be invited, the place of the wedding, the menu and its preparation and the details of the function is the subject of this article.

Anavils - Endangered Species Among Human

After Parsis, Anavils (Anavil Brahmins, અનાવિલ બ્રાહ્મણ ) are the fastest decreasing community. The total population of Anavils around the world does not exceed two lakhs figure and that is also fast reducing day by day. Days are not far, beyond a century or so, when they will have to be seen/found in records, photos and videos. Why?

   - they get married too late,    - many are dying unmarried,    - they wait for the career to be settled before the first (and maybe the only) childbirth.

Learning To Say No, When You Usually Say Yes

Great damage is done to you if you say Yes when actually you want to say No. During a lifetime, we come across incidences in the day to day life where a critical situation arises and we wrongly say Yes instead of No. This is about the analysis of all circumstances telling and teaching us why do we say Yes, how should we say No and most importantly, what are the benefits of telling No.

Dawood Ibrahim - A Journey From Dongri To Karachi, Via Dubai

One of the recent off-bit topics I’ve read, this one book about ‘Mumbai Mafia’ has been the most interesting, well-researched and well-written. Here is an excerpt from Dawood Ibrahim's journey from “Dongri to Dubai”, and the six decades of Mumbai mafia.

Should You Visit The Taj Mahal?

Should I at all visit 'the Taj' the Taj Mahal?

Yes, it is a must, because we have the world’s best wonder (The best of seven wonders of the world) and nothing should stop you from visiting it. Let me tell what others say about Taj.

What do visitors say?

French traveller Bernier said, “Of all the seven wonders of the world (1) Great Wall of China 7Th BC. China, (2) Petra 100 BC. Jordan, (3) Machu Picchu 1450AD. Peru, (4) Chinchan Itza 600 AD. Mexico, (5) Colossian 80AD. Italy, (6) Taj Mahal 1648AD. India, (7) Great Pyramid of Geisha 2560 BC. Egypt., Taj is the best. How can I praise unshaped pyramids of Gaza or irregular long wall of China and any of the other fort after seeing Taj Mahal- a poem in marble?”

Who Is At Fault: India, Pakistan, Or Both?

India-Pakistan relation’s issue is a very complex subject and to summarise it in a 180-page book needs great skill. This interesting book ‘India Vs Pakistan: Why Can’t We Just Be Friends?’ written by Husain Haqqani caught all my attention. I also got an opportunity to present its review to my fellow members of the Senior Citizenship Club. Following their enthusiastic response to my talk, I now have this great urge to share the review with my blog readers as well.

I shall try by introducing the author, telling about different wars, what leaders of India, Pakistan and other nations tell and finally the conclusion.

The Author: Hussain Haqqani

Hussain Haqqani is a Pakistani, who is a former Pakistani Ambassador to the US. Not only that, he was also an advisor to four Pakistani Prime Ministers including Late Benazir Bhutto. The author is currently the Director for South and Central Asia at the Hudson Institute in Washington DC. The authenticity of his writing increases because he is an aca…

Karmic Theory (Law Of Karma)

“Facing Challenges and Creating Destiny” by BK Shivani, Gurgaon
National Conference on Mind-Body-Medicine, Mount Abu.
August 6-10, 2010
What is Karma?

Karma is work or energy going out in the form of 1. Thought, 2. Word and/or 3. Action. Resultant return of energy is in the same amount known as Bhagya (Destiny). The role of God is to ask you to do Karma and to help you to do RIGHT karma. Then whatever good/bad karma you do, the result is accordingly and entirely your responsibility. Because the result is Destiny (Bhagya). So don’t blame anyone else or God for anything bad. Do not try to blame someone responsible for your own deed and its result.

Kankaria Carnival, Flower Show And Ahmedabad

25-Dec-2017 onwards, I had talked with my friend Anilbhai Desai on phone two-three times. Every time, he mentioned the worthiness of seeing Kankaria Carnival and invited us. But I was resistant to go. On 30-Dec-2017, while talking with Jayshreeben Desai, she also invited and insisted to visit Ahmedabad. So, my wife Bhavana and I accepted the invitation. In fact, when we need to face young generation people, we avoid out of fear of difference and generation gap. Even visiting close relatives and friends is not that pleasing nowadays, and so we avoid as far as possible. I had sufficiently interacted with Anilbhai's son – Darshan and his wife Shalu, so I could be little courageous to decide for the visit.