Scouter Khurshed Dadiba Hathiram was awarded India’s highest Scouting honour, The Silver Elephant by the President of India. At a glittering ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on February 16, 2015; Scouter Hathiram was conferred the award for his service to the Scouting movement in India. The President of India is the Chief Patron of the Bharat Scouts and Guides, the apex body of Scouting in India.
Everyone who has known Scouter Hathiram would have wondered what took the Bharat Scouts and Guides so long to confer the award. Scouter Hathiram at 92 years of age is still active in scouting and can be seen often at the East Bombay Camporees and other district level competitions.
In 2013 I had the distinction of guest-editing the Spring issue of the FEZANA Journal. It was a special on Scouting and Guiding and the Parsi Connection. While researching for articles, I had the distinct honour of speaking with Scouter Hathiram over telephone. However my connection to him; in a very peripheral way goes a few decades before that.
As a Boy Scout he was my examiner for the Plumber badge. And it took a few visits to his home in Bandra, opposite Avabai Petit School; to pass that badge. He was a thorough and tough as nails examiner. Funnily as I told my dad, also a former scout; that I would be going to Scouter Hathiram for the exam; he exclaimed that he as a Boy Scout in the early 1960’s had also gone to Scouter Hathiram for the Pathfinder Badge. This is but a small illustration of Scouter Hathiram’s longevity of service to the movement.
We congratulate Scouter Hathiram and wish him many years of continued happiness from the Scouting movement.