Whichever part of the globe the medico couple, Dr Venu and Dr Sunil Sanon, maybe at any point of time, their hearts beat for the countless patients in and around the hill town of Mussoorie.
The Covid pandemic spread across India last year, while the duo was spending time with their son and daughter in America, they continued to do their best to assist the countless folks back home.
Their work in Mussoorie, of testing and treating patients with different ailments, from villages far and near their hometown continued nonstop thanks to their team of equally committed volunteers. Dr Sanon born in Mussoorie loves and lives in the town.
Both Dr Sunil (69) and Dr Venu (63) do not show their age at all. Is it because of the magic of the mountains or a result of their passionate commitment?
Whether it is running a regular clinic in Mussoorie, visiting far-flung areas for rural health camps, or trekking to remote villages, they do it with ease. For tens of thousands in the region, they are much more than doctors. They offer their best to participate in all aspects of life, from celebrating births to supporting the bereaved.
The duo returned to India in late February this year, a little ahead of the second wave of rampaging Covid-19 that gripped Mussoorie as well. For them, the fight against the pandemic in India had just begun in person.
Just the other day, Dr Sunil and Dr Venu, donated a ‘Respirator-Bi-PAP life-saving Unit’ to the Covid care unit of Landour’s Government Community Hospital from the funds of The Divine Light Trust they formed in 2008. This body had several objectives – to promote education, spread awareness of health and hygiene, fight for the right to equitable medical and health care for the poor and under-served, promote rural sports and support the livelihood of the unfortunate.
The Sanon couple’s participation in Mussoorie’s fight against Covid’s second wave is but an extension of all the philanthropic work they have been doing ever since they began practice as young doctors in the salubrious climate of the hilly region, in the late 70s.
“I am madly in love with Mussoorie,” Dr Sunil told Tricity over the phone from the Uttarakhand town. “We have been carrying out an honest, ethical and compassionate medical practice,” he said and added, “the Lord has given us enough enabling us to contribute the best we may, be it knowledge, service or money.”
It was a chance encounter with Mr K.K. Birla and his family, known for the Hindustan Times media empire, which made Dr Sunil a doctor much cherished by Mr and Mrs K. K. Birla.
Mr K.K. Birla’s wife, Mrs Manorama Devi Birla used to spend a few months in Mussoorie every year and Dr Sunil was the doctor on call. Dr Sunil and Venu consider their association with the Birla family to be a privilege.
The philanthropic streak in Dr Sunil caught the eye of Dr and Mrs K. K.Birla, who formed the Manorama Devi Birla Charitable Trust, appointing Dr and Mrs Sanon as consultants. This association has continued for over two decades now.
In 2008, the Sanon family persuaded Venu and Sunil to find The Divine Light Trust. This trust aims to help people with general medical care and super-specialty medical services like cardiac and neurosurgery, chemotherapy, eardrum transplants, and renal transplants besides promoting education and skills.
“The countless smiles, genuine love, and affection is something to live and to die for,” Dr Sunil said.
Other than his medical prowess, Dr Sunil is a sought-after motivational speaker and a philosopher. He has now discovered a new skill of translation. He successfully translated his wife Venu’s book of English poetry titled “I Will Survive” into Hindi.
“Par excellence in academics, she does things quietly and efficiently,” said Dr Sunil Sanon. “The secret of my success in life is her walking hand in hand with me.”