During a recent visit to Chennai, I was delighted to be part of an evening organized by Dr. Pratap Reddy (founder of the Apollo Hospitals Group), for the National Council Members of CII and the leading industrialists of Tamil Nadu.

The event began with a small tribute to Shobhana Reddy (current President of CII) and Dr. Reddy’s daughter, highlighting her many achievements.

This was followed by a superb dance recital on the theme of ‘Belief is Power.’

The Reddy family are devout believers and devotees of Hanuman. Dr. Reddy immersed himself in the worship of Hanuman, reciting the Hanuman Chaalisa daily in order to garner extraordinary focus, clarity and energy to build a world-class healthcare eco-system in India. Similarly Shobhana too followed in her father’s footsteps, reciting the Hanuman Chaalisa when her neck and legs were broken in a terrible car accident. Belief in Hanuman brought her back to normalcy and today she is the First Woman President of CII!

Thus to felicitate Shobana, it was a fitting tribute that the dance recital was based on Lord Hanuman and his journey in search of Sita.  This journey across the ocean tests Hanuman’s valor and quick judgment and is a witness of the tenacity of spirit. The ocean is but an allegory for life itself – and life is a stage upon which our resilience and belief is tested and we can only emerge stronger if we have unshakeable belief in ourselves.

Thus the wonderful dance performance highlighted Hanuman’s crossing of the ocean, the struggles he faced and overcame through belief and faith. Once he lands in Sri Lanka and engineers an audience with Ravana, he perches himself higher than Ravana causing the Lankan ruler to set his tail on fire which Hanuman uses to destroy many parts of the city.

The final act is the rendering of the Hanuman Chaalisa with reverberations and dancing in praise of the Lord.