30 September, 2020

No One's An Island

Commander Gopalan Parthasarathy, Indian Navy doctor, Kochi: Hero for his sense of duty amid personal trauma

No One's An Island
December 26, 2004: Indian navy doctor Commander Gopalan Parthasarathy was spending a relaxing weekend at home when the phone rang. It was 10.30 am and on the line was his breathless older brother informing him that a tsunami had lashed parts of Chennai. The conversation immediately brought Commander Parthasarathy to his feet. His hands turned clammy and he could barely speak. Then, he slowly enquired about the whereabouts of his mother and grandmother who lived on a beachfront property. There was no good news there either. His brother had not been able to contact them.

Seconds after concluding his conversation, Commander Parthasarathy turned on the TV set to catch the latest news. He then picked up the phone, silently praying he wouldn't have any problems contacting Chennai. After two hours of continuous dialling, he got through to his mother, who told him she was safe but his 82-year-old grandmother had been evacuated to an unknown...


To read this piece, and more such stories in India's most exciting and exacting magazine, plus get access to our 25-year archives goldmine, please subscribe.

In this article:

More from Satinder Bindra

Latest Magazine

October 05, 2020

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section