An ordinary-looking person you would always see at 1 o’clock on three roads of Rajpipla – Lilwa Dhol, Darbar Road and Station Road – where four royal families, and four and two Parsi and Hindu families respectively used to stay. This man was Chaganbhai, and the scene dates back to 1956.
Only ten copies of The Times of India would come to Rajpipla, and he would hand deliver them to these families. He never knew English but enabled people to read English. Because of his untiring service of faithfully delivering The Times Of India every single day he came to be known as ‘Chagan Times’.
During those days a correspondent by the name of Dilip Pandya would send small stories, and it was fun to read a few lines about Rajpipla. We were in Bombay then, and whenever we read some tales of this quaint royal town we would feel very happy.
In earlier days Chagan Times would often mimic the late Dewan of Rajpipla Ferozshah Kothawala. When word got around, it was said that Mr. Kothavala also expressed the desire to see Chagan imitate him.
Bharuch Jilla Adivasi Sewa Sangh decided to felicitate Chagan Times for his untiring efforts of home delivery of The Times of India. A function was in held in Rajput Wadi at the Rajput Falia locality of Rajpipla. Ratnasinh Mahida, Secretary, Bharuch Jilla Adivasi Sewa Sangh, lauded this humble man’s yeomen service to the residents of Rajpipla. That was in 1964.
Chagan Times lived all alone. He was a bachelor, and had no relatives.
I feel proud to remember this unsung hero of the beautiful town of Rajpipla.