22 September, 2020

To Stomach The Scalpel

Bariatric surgery is becoming a staple in the weight loss industry. But should it?

Amit Haralkar
To Stomach The Scalpel

The discreet little office in south Mumbai could pass for just another corporate MNC headquarters. But for two incongruencies: the extra wide chairs in the waiting area and the comically large cutouts of a fat man with mysterious objects sticking out of their tummies. We are at bariatric surgeon Dr Muffazal A. Lakdawala’s Centre for Obesity and Diabetes Surgery (CODS), the frequent refuge of high-profile celebrities. Today, Lakdawala is a celebrity himself, the fame of his clients—mostly political heavyweights—having rubbed off. Nitin Gadkari is his latest catch. The BJP chief hopes to lose forty kilos after having gone under the knife. And he isn’t alone. Bariatric surgery is all the rage now. “I think I have operated on every overweight builder in Mumbai in the last year,” laughs Lakdawala. Not to mention 20 to 25 ministers, from the ncp’s Nawab Malik to state cabinet minister Nitin Raut to the BJP’s Vinod Tawde and other patients who prefer to remain nameless.



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