Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Spare Parts

By: Team PenTastic
[Written by: Parthasarathy Nayak, 4th year, EE]

My friend had a close call with an accident. He was fine, but the side bumper of the Honda Aviator he was riding broke into pieces. We had to get it repaired before returning to its original owner. We started off one afternoon. First visited the PGL Honda showroom in Fire Station. We had to wait since it was an old vehicle and its exact cabinet was taking time to be found out. It was almost forty minutes later that the guy said they were not available. He asked to visit a different store which was another thirty minutes away. Went there, no avail. Another shop, after another shop, but the part was simply not available. We had almost exhausted all the shops in Bhubaneswar except one in Cuttack Rd. We went there and after a cruel wait, got our hands on one. The exact same color and model.

It took some time to refit and finally we came back to our hostel. It was pretty late by then and I thought of taking a quick nap. It was then that I thought of collecting all that I could learn from the days spending. First thing to strike me was, how difficult it was to find a spare part of a vehicle, secondly the addresses of all the Honda showrooms and workshops all over the city map. Then my thoughts went to those who people who have actually lost some part of them, maybe an eye or a leg. The thing is, you can find the parts of vehicles easily, you may recover soon from an injury, but never can you find a spare part of your own body. There is no manufacturing of the body anymore, yes there are prosthetic, but they hardly feel the same. You have to take care of yourself as it is, because you are one of a kind.

My mind again drifted towards the body parts market, and how bad it was. Patients have to wait for months to get a donor, and if they do find one, there are many other nit picky details that have to closely match other than the blood group for the body to accept the incoming organ and not just reject it away as a pathogen. Immune system suppressants are used to calm the body down, and let it not panic seeing such a big new thing enter its itself which could also have been some foreign agent trying to kill. Eyes and kidneys are the most sought after, many people die, but rarely do they donate their eyes. Kidneys are so rare, there is raving black market for it. Once there was a patient, when she got approved for the operation of her kidneys, she was given a date of the year 2018, just because there were just so many people on the waiting list to receive a donor organ.

Then there are stereotypes. Families simply do not want to part away with any part of the deceased. The ones signing up for organ donation are simply not enough to scale up to a country as large as India. It is too late now to change society, but we as youngsters can bring about change at a much larger scale, our young minds are impressionable and hence can be molded anyway one wants. This is a small request to sign up at nearest hospital, to donate and give life. If one looks at the bigger picture, and if one has watched the Harry Potter series, you'd understand, that by giving away an organ, is like planting a horcrux in a body other than our own self, this way the organ continues to live on, happy, oblivious to the body it is in. This only helps the human desire to live on forever, to be immortal. In a way you never really die, a part of you keeps living on.


  1. It's a nice take on life. I am with you in this. As youngsters we can make a difference. We can understand the importance of saving a life beyond prejudices and myths.
    'Little too late' is a bit harsh. It's never really late. :)