By Sajid Iqbal
There are few personalities in India and Pakistan who left a legacy as lasting on both sides of the border as iconic engineer and philanthropist, Sir Ganga Ram.
Hospitals in Delhi and Lahore – built by his trust and family in his name – continue to uphold his legacy to this day.
While Pakistan’s Lahore city was his home, during the 1947 Partition of India, his family moved to Delhi in India.
In August 1947, India won independence from British rule and the country split into two new nations – India and Pakistan. Between half a million and a million people died in religious violence and 12 million became refugees.
Ganga Ram died in 1927, but writer Sadat Hasan Manto’s short story, The Garland, summed up just how much the man and his legacy is intertwined with the city of Lahore.
In the story, said to be based on a true incident during the Partition, a mob attacks Ganga Ram’s statue in front of his hospital to wipe out his Hindu name. But when a man is injured, the mob shouts, “Let us rush him to Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.”