Large image
Her Life

From her dear sister-in-law

February 25, 2021
Remembering Dr. Kusum Sahgal  fondly

Dear Kusum, you have left us but you will never be forgotten because you have left your indelible footprints in the sands of time! 

Kusum was an integral part of our family for almost 57 lovely years and very gracefully took on the role of “Barri Bhabhi” for me, always guiding me in the right direction. Anand, Latika, Deepika, and the entire family were so fortunate to receive so much love and care from her and from dear brother Viney, which we will always cherish. She would shower us with love when we went to India, always focused on helping us make the most of our visits there. The entire family used to so look forward to her and Viney’s summertime visits with us to the US.We will always cherish the good times we had and remember her for her very warm, loving, caring, forgiving and generous personality and feel gratitude for the times we spent together. 

Kusum was a highly accomplished person of great academic, intellectual, and professional achievements that one can justifiably be very proud of, yet she never dwelled on her accomplishments or shared them with us.She identified more with her role as a family member and as a spiritual and an inquisitive seeker of the truth and divine knowledge through study and meditation.She meditated for hours together, which no doubt gave her a lot of inner strength that I admired.  I looked upon her with reverence as someone who had attained so much spiritual growth through the path of meditation that I had designated her as our savior with special powers in her prayers.Whenever I was anxious or worried about anything or anyone, I would ask her to pray for us. She would invariably comfort me by saying, “I am already doing that! As A matter of fact, I pray for you and the entire family daily.” 

Kusum was a very devoted member of the Self Realization Fellowship family who never pushed her religious beliefs on others.I would express my surprise at this to her. She believed that a person who was mentally and spiritually ready would himself seek that knowledge and ask questions that she would gladly answer. 
Today, we mourn Kusum’s physical absence. Dear Viney, Sandeep, Seema, Vikram, Vedant and Dhruv, we share your loss and love you all deeply. However, her spirit lives on. Her indestructible soul lives on.Our beautiful memories of her as a selfless and loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister-in-law, aunt and a senior family member of a very, very, united family will live on and continue to inspire us, always. She truly lived a life worth celebrating! Rest in peace, dear Kusum, until we meet again, because I do believe in rebirth and life after life. 

Kusum’s Life History

February 22, 2021
Dr Kusum Sahgal was born on November 25, 1940, in Kericho, Kenya. She moved to Calcutta, India with her parents as a six year old. They moved to Delhi around 1954.
She did her matriculation from Punjab University, and topped.
She did her Pre-medical from Hindu College in Delhi, and was at the top of her class. She joined Lady Harding’s Medical College as a student in 1958, graduating in 1963. She topped her class in LHMC and won several medals. She was married on February 1, 1964 and moved to DLW Campus in Varanasi with her husband who was in the Indian Railways.
She did her MD in Preventive and Social Medicine from BHU in 1967 and worked briefly as a Lecturer in BHU. Both her children, a son and a daughter, were born in Varanasi.

In August 1969, she moved to Delhi when her husband resigned from the Railways to take up a Private Sector assignment,

In 1970 she joined MAMC as a lecturer and rose to be Director Professor and HOD of PSM. She was Chair of the Ethics Committee of the Delhi Medical Council.

In 1995 she was hand picked to join NACO as a Jt. Director, and was in charge of the Information, Education and Communication Division when NACO was in its infancy. She represented the country in various conferences overseas.

In 1996, after a brief second stint in MAMC, she was appointed Principal, LHMC, and MS of the associated Kalawati Saran and Sucheta Kripalani Hospitals, where she continued until taking premature retirement in December 1999.

She was deeply spiritual throughout her career. In 1980 she became a disciple of Swami Paramahansa Yogananda, and was Chair of the Delhi Kendra. She was very highly regarded in the Yogananda Satsanga Society in India as well as in the parent organisation SRF In Los Angeles.

In 2016, she became the force behind setting up of the Sahgal’s Paramahansa Yogananda Charitable Trust, of which she was a Trustee. Under her direction, the Trust set up a Charity Wing in the ICare Hospital in Sector 26, Noida. The Trust is also getting a school for underprivileged children constructed in Ranchi, and is also involved in other charitable activities.

She had an unfortunate fall in November 2016, followed by a Hemiarthroplasty. This limited her mobility, but not her indomitable spirit. Despite various health issues, she remained functional till the very end, and passed away on Christmas Eve 2020.