Date : March 11, 2011
Place: Bhaktivedanta Hospital, Mumbai
This is a very inspiring story of a simple young devotee boy from Mumbai, who is in the verge of leaving his body at Bhaktivedanta Hospital.
Anoop Banerjee, born in 1st June 1983, is from a Bengali Family. He has lived most of his life in Jogeshwari, a western suburb in Mumbai. His family (members) are not ISKCON devotees or followers, but have a favourable disposition.
From their very old memories way back in 1989-90, When Anoop was around 5-6 years old, both the father and son shared that - he was taken to chowpatty Radha Gopianth mandir by his father. They had taken darshan of “Sri Sri Radha Gopinath” and some how went back-side of the temple, where H.H.Radhanath Maharaj’s room was there. H.H.Radhanath Maharaj was sitting in his room (that time much fairer than he is now). He saw this little boy standing far away. Maharaj called the boy, took him in his lap and gave him a Maha-chocholate wrapped in golden paper.
This incident was not taken very seriously. The family departed and went on with life. Little Anoop grew up in the normal course. When he was 22 years, he attended Juhu-temple Jagannath Rath Yatra. He became inspired and started chanting “Hare Krishna”. So from 2005 October he was chanting between 10 to 16 rounds. Devotees from Juhu temple such as Nimai Nitai Prabhu, Radha Aparajita Prabhu, Hara Prabhu, Azim Krishna Prabhu etc gave their association. He started visiting Juhu temple on Sundays. He used to work in a call centre.
In 2008, he went to Goregaon base and also had association with Jagannath Prabhu from Chowpatty. He occasionally visited Chowpatty ISKCON temple also.
Anoop was working in a call centre. In mid-2010, Anoop started developing stomach pain and upsets. In 2010 October he was detected of having “Intestinal Cancer”. It was a huge shock for him and his family. He was admitted in Nanawati Hospital. He was shuffling between hospital and home for chemotherapy treatments. Since that time, its been difficult times with lot of pain and suffering and Anoop was unable to go to Satsangs and take devotee association. As a result he almost stopped chanting. However, during the course of this treatment period Anoop obtained “Journey Home” book from some devotee and was also reading it.In February 2011, he asked his father to take him to “Bhaktivedanta Hospital” owing to its devotional atmosphere.
He was brought to the Bhaktivedanta hospital. When he met “Dr. Vinita Sharma” from palliative care he expressed his desire to become a disciple of Radhanath Maharaj. He started chanting 2 rounds a day. The same was conveyed to Ram Sharan Prabhu, who is the Executive of Spiritual Care Department. Ram Sharan Prabhu tried speaking to senior devotees to see if something can be done to connect him to Maharaj, but (Since anup was not known to any of the devotees in the temple and also Maharaj had to go to Pune the next day so it was very difficult)
Suddenly on March 08th 2010, H.H.Radhanath Maharaj on his way to Pune stopped by the hospital to see Yamuna mathaji. When he finished his meeting and came out Ramsharan Prabhu explained about this devotee. Maharaj went to his room. As anup saw maharaj he could not believe his eyes. He fell flat as a danda at the feet of maharaj. The Intravenous line was still on hand, so the saline stand was about to fall but Ramsharandas held it somehow and removed the saline bottle from it to that the tension doesn’t pull out the needle from his hand which busy grabbing the feet of maharaj. He cried for sometime then was lifted by Ramsharandas and put on the chair as he could nt get up on his own. Then Maharaj took him in his arms and pacified him.. He kept on saying to Maharaj “Please give me your mercy) Maharaj (gazed at him with compassion
Maharaj: I will comeback from pune and meet you again. (smiled)
Anup: Maharaj please give me your mercy.
Ramsharandas: (whispered in anup’s ears)This visit of his is mercy
Maharaj: (gazed at him for some time) are you asking for initiation.
Anup: (couldnot speak out of shame and shyness) Maharaj I had prayed to this Photograph of Krishna intensely that I could meet you and he has fulfilled my desire…. (mumbled) please give me your mercy.
Maharaj: Alright, I will send you beads to chant.
Anup: But Maharaj Now I am unable to chant 16 rounds. I chant 1 round or max 2 rounds daily.
Maharaj: (took his face in his hands) I initiate you right now. Your name will be Achyut Govind das.
Ramsharandas: H.G.Achyut Govind Prabhu Ki All: Jai.( Maharaj leaves)
Anup: (stultified) So will he initiate me …. What …. When…
Ramsharandas: (in ears) you fool he has already initiated you. Your new name is H.G.Achyut Govind Das(embraced him). (Anup was in a shock)
Next day Ramsharandas visited H.G.Achyut Govind Das at 11am. He was sitting on the bed his legs on the chair and his hands folded on the knees and his head on his arms chanting intensely. He was sitting in such a position to bear the pain of his stomach in order to chant attentively his eleventh round.
H.G.Achyut Govind Prabhu is now chanting 16 rounds and is in his last days in this mortal world..
H.H.Radhanath Swami Maharaj ki Jai!
ISKCON founder Aacharya Srila Prabhupad Ki Jai!!
“A moment of pure devotee’s association cannot be compared”
“Svalpam Apyasya Dharmasya … even a little bit of endeavour can save one from the most dangerous type of fear”
Date : March 11, 2011