January 17, 2021

2020 Backwards: Through the eyes of a 100 year old Indian man in Dubai

Jagjit Singh, 100, and his wife Sudarshan Kaur, 92, tested positive for Govind-19 in October 2020, both of which are asymptomatic cases. After spending most of the past year on their own in India, the couple has temporarily relocated to their family to make up for lost time in the United Arab Emirates.
Image Credit: Ahmed Ramadan / Gulf News

Dubai: The word “isolation” may have been first introduced into the public dictionary in 2020, but for 100-year-old Jagjit Singh and his wife Sudarshan Kaur, 92, the son evoked vivid memories 60 years ago when his son contracted polio.

“This is a very important time for us and it may have changed our whole life forever,” said retired Colonel Singh. At that time, he was stopped in Jamnagar when polio was on the rise. “In the morning, I had issued a circular to all the people of Jamnagar on how to deal with and deal with polio,” he said, the same night before his wife quickly intervened that his nine-year-old son had called for help from the bedroom. “He said,‘ Mom, I can’t get up. I can’t get up. I have to go to the bathroom ‘. I was worried he could not move his legs, ”Kaur said.

From Singh’s experience, he knew better than to try to force his son Burminder to walk, so he took him to the doctor. Following professional advice, anxious parents took their eldest son to isolation and kept him away from his feet for 40 days, while Kaur said he received “treatment from the sun”.

“So we had both good times and bad times,” Kaur said, smiling wearily as we returned to the most recent events.

Old photo of Jagjit Singh and wife Sudarshan Kaur, 92

Jagjit Singh and Sudarshan Kaur have known each other since 1939 and were married in Lahore in 1948.
Image credit: Issued

The 2020 experience left Singh and Kaur to describe themselves as a loner – an elderly couple who endured a severe lockout that began in March and were locked up for months at their apartment in Mumbai’s Cuff Parade. In early October, both tested positive for COVID-19.

Speaks Gulf News From his son’s Jumeirah Villa in Dubai, Singh revealed what it takes to be strong-willed and grateful in such uncertain times.

Dealing with COVID-19

“When the disease was reported we were in Mumbai and our own community stopped people from going in and out. They said no one would come in from outside. Even in the car we had to start wearing masks. I didn’t go anywhere, it all came with discipline. With control of the movement, we could go anywhere Did not go out [for seven months] Up to [my daughter-in-law] Rita came and took us to Dubai. ”

Despite the live-in driver and staff to give the couple a hand, no facility could change the longing to see their two sons and their families. “We weren’t afraid of anything, we were very comfortable, but we were lonely because we realized our kids weren’t here,” Kaur said.

Rita Ahluwalia, 63, explained that her mother-in-law was an asymptomatic COVID-19 patient and that she had not been exposed to the virus until she wanted to buy a plane ticket to Dubai and reunite with her family on the required vacation. Singh and his wife tested positive three times, but with the help of home remedies such as a steamer and hot towels, they were cleared three weeks later and were finally able to travel to the United Arab Emirates on October 22, 2020.

Reaches 100 years of age

With a hint of confidence in his tone, Singh – who reached his centenary milestone on December 20 – explained that being strong and fitting into everything is the reason for a good lifestyle.

Jagjit Singh Kovit-19 survivor

At the age of 100, Jagjit Singh maintains an active lifestyle in defiance of COVID-19 by walking in the garden, exercising, practicing yoga and praying daily.
Image Credit: Ahmed Ramadan / Gulf News

“Every morning with half an hour of yoga, I do my puja [prayers] As soon as I woke up. That I did not give up. I worship the sun, I worship Shiva, Guru Nanak நான் I worship all of them because I believe that no religion has any part, they are all the same. So this is a question of connecting with everyone, and then you will receive the blessings of all. That’s what I learned from spending four years as a boy in a gurudwara [place of worship for Sikhs] There I finished 7th to 10th grade. ”

“I have not become a 100 percent vegetarian, but for a year now, I prefer vegetables to meat. I lead a very normal life, but I need to exercise every day, except on Sundays and some holidays. Yoga is the key to good health, but not the only thing, Because whether you are Allah, Shiva or Guru, you have to be associated with a higher spiritual power. ”

While the elderly couple have no confirmed plans for when they will return to Mumbai, they are sure how grateful they both are for spending the holidays with their sons, five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. .

Describing his aspirations for 2021, Kaur added: “The new year should be better than we have ever been.