Arshad Farooq Butt
This is the story of Bharwan Bai, a Hindu nurse from Chichawatni city who was employed at Tehsil Headquarters Hospital Chichawatni. Bharawan Bai was living in Block No. 4 with her two sons Anand Kumar and Satya Nand Sewak, and a daughter Lakshmi.
The place where the Baldia Chichawatni offices are now used to be the Tehsil Headquarters Hospital. Relatives of the patients coming from far and wide used to go to Rahat Bagh for refreshments. The Partition of India shook the lives of many families and Bharawan Bai also fell victim to it, but the attacks of the misguided mob could not take the love of the city out of her heart and she returned to the city after many years.
Riaz Sahib, the retired headmaster, refreshes his memory and writes:
In 1948, I was a 10th class student in Government MC Model High School Chichawatni. Anand, the eldest son of Bharwan Bai, was my classmate. While his youngest son Satya Nand Sewak was studying in the sixth grade.
Bharwan Bai was a woman with a spirit of service beyond religious prejudice. Prejudice was rife among some of the people who settled in the vicinity of Chichawatni after the partition.
A few such rioters attacked Bharwan Bai’s house in the evening. She hugged her children and jumped from the roof to the other side of the empty house, breaking one of her legs, but she herself suffered. And she asked the children not to make a sound. She remained in hiding for about three hours.
After averting danger, Bharwan Bai sent a message to Dr. Abdul Ghafoor who cam and shifted her to his quarters at 9 pm, treated her injured leg and hid her in his quarters for three months.
When she recovered, Bharwan Bai expressed her desire to return to work in the hospital. On which Dr. Abdul Ghafoor spoke to his staff but he faced severe resistance. On the news of the re-attack on Bharwan Bai, Dr. Abdul Ghafoor took him to the border in his car overnight, including the children.
Bharwan Bai settled with her children in Ludhiana, a city in the Indian Punjab, and resumed her journey of life from her clinic there. Her eldest son died, and youngest son Satya Nand Sewak became a doctor and returned to Chichawatni in 1991 with his wife and mother.
Now the dust of distribution had settled. Bharawan Bai visited every house in the city where there were people she knew. Dr. Sewak also visited Government MC Model High School, his primary school, and gave lectures to the students.
In 2014, Dr. Sewak visited Chichawatni again. This time he was accompanied by his sister Lakshmi. An honorary ceremony was also held in his honor at Jinnah Hall Baldia Chichawatni in which Dr. Sewak expressed his love for his hometown Chichawatni.
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