On July 4, retired businessman hailing from India aged 68 Ravinder K Bansal who lives at Clarence near Buffalo for 40 years took off in his Cessna 400 from Buffalo Niagara International Airport in the US to raise $750,000 (₹4.83 crore) for a hospital in his hometown of Ambala. At the end of the 19,878mile (31,990-km) trip, he wants to have the money to buy an MRI machine for the Rotary Ambala Cancer and General Hospital.
“It’s not only an adventure that I have been dreaming about for a while, but will also get the hospital the muchneeded magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) equipment,” he shared with Rotarians there. “I grew up in Kasauli and Ambala and both are etched in my memory. My father, Dr Chater Muni Bansal, was the lone private physician at Kasauli, where I did my schooling. I shifted to Ambala to attend SD College and stayed with my elder brother, Subhash, and his wife, Sneh. She was like an elder sister and the kindest person I know. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1997 and died in 2012, but while going through chemotherapy for which she had to go to Ludhiana often, she provided the spark that led Ambala Rotarians to set up the Rotary Ambala Cancer and General Hospital,” he said. “To me, helping this 100bed hospital, which provides healthcare at a nominal cost, is to honour her. That’s why, I’m taking this flight,” Bansal shared.
Bansal, was the owner of AirSep, a multimillion-dollar medical oxygen therapy equipment company that he built from scratch. He sold it for $170 million . He is spending $100,000 (₹64.4 lakh) on the trip in his plane of 11 years. Bansal is expected to reach Chandigarh on July 27.