By Gopal Kukreja – May 28th 2001
SOMETHING ABOUT KANDHAR
Hindu community in Kandhar had a pride of having some known Hakeems (Yunani medicine practicioners) who had very strong practice in the city, especially among the muslim people. These Yunani medicines prescriptions were coming in these families from generations and had been working very well and was the only available remedy to minor sickness like fever, pain or stomoch disorders and impotency etc. etc. Medical doctors started practicing in Kandhar probably in 1960’s but initially people maintained more trust in Hakeems only. Some of the expensive herbs like Ambar, silver etc. were imported from India at that time.
An old story comes to my mind in this connection. There was a very famous hakeem in Kabul Bazar (I cannot remember his name). One day, wife of the governor of Kandhar fell sick and this hakeem was requested to pay a visit to examine her. Hakeem refused to do so and then governor requested him again. Finally Hakeem agreed to examine his wife on the condition that governor sends his own horse with his horseman to pick Hakeem up from his place. It was agreed and the whole muslim shopkeepers and sidewalkers were surprised to see a Hindu on the horse which was not allowed those days. This event happened probably around 80-90 years ago.The wife of the governor recovered with the treatment of the Hakeem..
The governor asked the Hakeem for a reward. Hakeem demanded that Hindus be pardoned from wearing a rope around their waiste and be allowed to ride on a horse as other citizens. The governor wrote an order (FARMAN) on the same day in the honor of the Hakeem. Thus this honorable Hakeem brought a feeling of pride, honor and dignity to the community and coming generations.
Some of the famous hakeems were Late Shree Lakhmichandji Gawri, Late Shree Birbaldasji Gawri, Late shree Hondrajji Gawri, Late shree Niranjandas ji Gawri, Late shree Rattanchandji Gawri , Late shree Jeevan Dass ji Gawri, Late Shree Tekchand ji Gawri, Late Shree Chokha Ramji Gawri, Late shree Chandaramji Gawri, Shree ChanderKishore Gawri and all of these hakeems had their clinics in Kabul bazaar right in front lane of Shivalaya. All the medicines they prescribed were prepared with different herbs in their own clinics. Some of the prescription diaries of few of these hakeems are still available in India in their families.
Hon. Mr.Hariram Gawri from Toronto, Canada has supported in completing the above list of Hakeems.
Being in this prestigious profession, they were the pride of our community and they enjoyed wonderful financial gains, excellent life and real estate at their times.
GOPAL KUKREJA (TORONTO CANADA)
A correction by Kavit Chanra (Germany Dec 16th 2002):
Nihalchand Chanra in Shikarpur Bazar was also a famous hakeem in Kandahar. He was a hakeem of children.