Move over Medical Tourism, #BegTourismIndia is the next wave !

A couple of days ago, news of a Russian tourist found begging outside the famous South Indian shrine of Kancheepuram went viral.

The backpacker from Russia, Evangelin apparently arrived in India recently. On September 24 he travelled from Chennai to Kancheepuram. After visiting a few temples in the town, he went to an ATM kiosk but was unable to draw money as his debit card’s PIN had got locked. After he was unable to withdraw money from the ATM, he got desperate. On seeing some beggars sitting outside the Sri Kumarakottam Temple, he joined them and started seeking alms using his cap.

Videos and pictures of Evangelin ‘begging’ went viral and media and digirati went wild over the story. The local police in Kanchipuram stepped in, and after verifying his documents, offered him some money to enable him to go to the Russian consulate in Chennai for assistance. This saga also prompted Indian External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj to tweet

The story does not end here. This week, the Russian tourist was seen begging in the busy T Nagar area in Chennai since Saturday. He was reportedly charging excited Diwali shoppers Rupees 100 (about $2) for selfies with him. Evangelin reportedly told the media that he had tasted ‘good money’ through begging and could use this to finance his travels in India.

TheHinduTourist
image: The Hindu

 

Russian consulate in Chennai had earlier reported that Evangelin had not contacted them and that they will assist him in when he contacts them. The Mambalam police in Chennai detained him after he continued begging in the city.  On being questioned, he told the police that he sought alms as per Lord Shiva’s wish and was quoted saying “I am a devotee of the Lord Shiva. I wish to travel across the country.”

Officials seem to be helplessly watching this saga unfold. The police was quoted saying “He holds valid travel documents and visa papers, and cannot be deported immediately.”

Indian entrepreneurs are exploring a variety of tourist ventures including Medical Tourism. The Evangelin saga  has interesting implications for #BegTourismIndia :

  • Enterprising startups may spring up offering #BegTourismIndia for backpackers
  • Tech savvy tourist-beggars may take to social media by creating facebook and whatsup group, sharing tips on begging, and about tourist hotspots
  • Some may offer Caucasian backpakers ‘coaching classes’ in the subtle art of begging at temple steps
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Traveling During Recovery

A few weeks ago, we blogged about Medical and Dental tourism to India (link). Here is a follow-up guest post on a similar topic referred by Jennifer Scott  from Spirit Finder.

Traveling during the recovery process can be difficult on many levels; while part of you wants to relax and have fun, another part of you may be struggling with the temptation of substances in a foreign environment, either because they’re readily available or because being away from home is causing anxiety or homesickness. It’s important to plan well before your trip even begins to make sure you won’t have any problems. Some things to think about include:

  • Are you prepared to handle an emergency?
  • Do you have a sponsor standing by you can contact?
  • Will you be able to exit any given environment easily?
  • Are there meetings or resources available to you?

Do Some Research

It’s imperative that you do some research before your trip to find out if there will be meetings nearby that you can attend if you start to feel you need one. If there aren’t any, consider looking online for a support group that can help you get through a tough situation.

You’ll also need to check out the area you’ll be visiting; if you’re staying at a resort, for instance, make sure it’s not all-inclusive. Many of these vacation destinations offer an open bar for the duration of a guest’s stay, which can be temptation you definitely don’t need.

Come Prepared

There are lots of things to think about when you’re packing, especially if there are certain items you need daily to keep you in the right frame of mind. Comfort items, such as a favorite scarf or piece of jewelry, should be tucked safely away in your carry-on luggage. It’s also a good idea to bring any recovery literature that interests you in case you need a pick-me-up during the trip.

If it’s difficult for you to sleep in a strange place, bring some items that will help you relax, such as a favorite blanket or pillow. Don’t allow yourself to become overly tired, hungry, or bored while you’re away, as these feelings can push you toward wanting a substance. Keep snacks handy, especially if you’re going out for the day, and take naps if you feel you aren’t getting good sleep at night. It’s also important to prepare for any emergencies that could occur.

Plan Well

It’s a good idea to plan out the trip as much as possible and have backup plans, as well. Leaving a trip of several days to chance is dangerous for your recovery, so look online for activities, places to visit, and destinations that you can walk to from your hotel. Look up price ranges for these places and check reviews to make sure they’re worth your time (especially if you’re in a very touristy area).

Stay Connected

Most people who go on vacation want to get away and disconnect from the world for a while, but for individuals in recovery, this can be a bad thing. Stay connected, especially to your sponsor or a trusted friend who can help you get through hard times, and let them know where you’ll be in order to maintain a sense of responsibility for your actions. However, it’s a good idea to stay away from “checking in” online to places you visit while on vacation, as this could become a safety issue. Keep your social media settings private to ensure that only friends and family can see your posts.

Start Your Adventure

Remember that recovery is a lifelong road, and when you’re in the early stages, it can seem like an uphill climb that you’re not strong enough to make. Find your strength and challenge yourself to push through any fear or anxiety you may have; you might decide on vacation to try something you’ve always wanted to do but never had the courage or access to, such as rock climbing or snorkeling. As long as it’s a healthy endeavor–and you follow all the safety precautions–this can be an excellent opportunity for you to learn and grow in a positive way.

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Medical and Dental Tourism to India

Indians, NRIs and tourists from around the world are beginning to realize the potential of modern and traditional Indian medicine. Indian hospitals and medical establishments have also realized the potential of this niche market and have begun to tailor their services for foreign visitors. GaramChai.com has an extensive listing of Medical Tourism providers.

In this blog we feature Dental Tourism at Dr. Krinita Motwani’s Multi-speciality Dental Clinic.

DentalTourism

Dental tourism in India has become very popular over the last decade. Patients from world over are visiting the subcontinent to avail various dental treatments. The exotic locations and quality health care facilities make India an ideal choice for “Dental Tourism”. Dental clinics easily create a package for you that involve both your treatment plan and your vacation.

At Dr. Krinita Motwani’s Dental Clinic we understand all your needs and ensure that you leave the country with not just a beautiful set of teeth but also happy memories. You can communicate with us through email. We encourage Patients to share pictures and x-rays. This gives us a chance to plan the treatment in detail and give a more precise estimate of treatment time/visits as well as cost structure.

consultation room.JPG

This state of the art dental studio has a unique combination of a relaxing ambience along with use of cutting edge equipment and internationally acclaimed dental materials. The atmosphere is unlike regular expected dental clinics. We follow excellent protocol for infection control and hygiene and are associated with the best laboratories in the country. We are extremely proud of our pleasant, friendly and well trained staff going out of the way to make patients feel at home and deliver personalized dental care ranging from simple prophylaxis to a complete smile make-over!!

The dental clinic is spacious, tastefully decorated with everything passionately handpicked by Dr. Krinita. A great deal of effort has been put in combining artistic value with high end technology.

Well equipped with cutting edge armamentarium:

  • Automated dental chairs imported and assembled in Germany -for optimum comfort and efficiency
  • RVG: digital dental x ray software- less time consuming and reduced exposure to radiations
  • Autoclave for sterilization with the latest technology in an isolated area
  • Disposable products to maintain high levels of patient hygiene
  • Top of the line instruments and dental materials – only best in the world.

The wide range of services offered at the Dental Clinic include:

  • Dental Implants
  • Cosmetic Dentistry
  • Dental Veneers
  • Single sitting Root canal treatment
  • Surgical extraction
  • Tooth Coloured Restorations
  • Invisible braces
  • Smile design
  • Paediatric dentistry
  • Dental crowns
  • Tooth whitening
  • Tooth Jewellery

You can get more detailed information on their website.