Journey Through Gujarat-3

Gandhidham, one of the well-known transport hubs in Gujarat, is one of my favorite touchpoints for long-haul truck driver interaction. Gujaratis prefer to be entrepreneurs than truck drivers. A few I had interacted with over the years can be counted at one’s fingertips. Yet, it is a huge transport hub, given two seaports: Kandla for bulk items such as coal, fertilizer, oil, etc., and Mundra for container movement.

In Gandhidham, the drivers you meet will be from the Hindi belt: Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Madhya Pradesh.

Deepak Thakkar of Gujarat Logistics is also Gandhidham-based, whom I met at one of the Mahindra Transport Excellence Award functions several years ago. He had won some awards for some extraordinary work, and I cannot recollect.

On a road trip from Manesar to Mundra port in KMT Logistics car carrier in the week before the 2016 Independence Day, I met Thakkar on my return trip. I planned to spend time with this fleet-owning motor malik before catching my express train from Gandhidham to Bandra, Mumbai. Somehow, the schedule went awry.

It was raining, and hence Thakkar’s arrival at the waiting room of Gandhidham railway station was doubtful. The train was already at the platform, and the clock was ticking. Since I had light luggage, getting into the bogie even as it would move out of the junction should pose no challenge.

Did he come? Yes, he did. He brought something which I can never forget. What was it?

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