The Entourage

The clock is about to strike 12, but in the noon. Nevertheless, the desperation to make a move is at its peak… But before the final bell chimes, Tanumoy (fondly called Prithak) hits the jackpot!

What appeared like an uneventful day has shifted into the top gear. Prithak, with his childhood friend Nayna, has managed to arrange an event in a school that is his alma mater. On learning about Kaka and B.O.Y. 2.0, the school’s principal is utterly impressed and is keen to meet him. Agarpara Mahajati Vidyapith, Prithak’s school, agrees to host Kaka for two sessions. 

Kaka delivers two sessions at the school – one for the staff and the other for students. Students pay undivided attention. A pin-drop silence applauds Kaka’s presentation. He prods the students for questions but gets blank stares. That’s when he plays the oldest trick in the book…

“Only smart children brim with questions so as to learn more…”

Before he can teasingly glance at the entire class, a few students shoot up their hands with valid queries about organ donation. 

A boy asks, “If someone donates a part of their liver, would it grow back?” Kaka answers with simple analogies. “If we cut our nail, it regrows. When we donate blood, our body produces an equalising amount. Likewise, if we donate a part of our liver, it has the capacity to regenerate!”

The teachers, discreetly, exchange smiles too to watch the students so engaged! The press reporters are having a field day to witness the effect of a sensitive topic like organ donation on young minds.

Reporters also interview Kaka outside the school. A biker, Ayan Bhattacharya, has ridden from Naihati just to meet Kaka. Also, on hearing about B.O.Y. 2.0 and Kaka’s motto of promoting organ donation, Chotka Dada – a club member of Prithak’s residence – wishes to felicitate Kaka and joins the gang. 

Prithak watches the proceedings with deep gratitude. He expresses, “I am blessed to be able to host Kaka at my place. My parents and school teachers are thrilled that I am associated with this noble cause named B.O.Y. 2.0. The bikers and I salute Kaka’s mettle. Riding a motorbike at the age of 68 for a continuous 132 days is absolutely commendable!”

Animesh and Shampa bring packets of dinner over to Prithak’s home. Around 10-15 bikers are awaiting another interview to wind up at Prithak’s home in the evening. The moment the recording stops, a bellowing chatter fills the room! Debarghya and Subhankar, who have been accompanying Prithak and Kaka since yesterday help update the others.

Kaka and Animesh recall an important task – of purchasing a raincoat. When they step out, another 8 bikers start their bikes and join them! The entourage leads to a retailer on a Kolkata street…

Watching 10 people enter the shop, the shopkeeper estimates a good sale only to be met with an anti-climax. Kaka requests for a raincoat set just for him. However, almost instantaneously, the shopkeeper’s disappointment is replaced by recognition.

“Aren’t you Pramod Mahajan from Pune!? I saw you on TV!”

The bikers are as dumbfounded as Kaka! One of the Kharagpur interviews has reached the shopkeeper. Blessing his luck, the shopkeeper hands a discount on B.O.Y. 2.0’s urgent purchase!

The group returns home to plates full of piping hot food and conversations full of reminiscence and fresh experiences!

Day 048
Kolkata, West Bengal
– Juhi Kothari/Shetty

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