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The Rediff Special
June 29, 2004
My earliest memories of Daddy revolve around bath time.
We'd sit in the bathtub, singing loudly, and splashing Mum if she dared hurry us.
He taught me to wash my hair without getting shampoo into my eyes.
He taught me to light the gas stove, ride a bicycle and drive his station wagon (albeit with his heart in his mouth)!
Daddy taught me to stand up for what I believe in, even if it meant I stood alone.
He gave me the confidence to conquer the world. He assured me that, should I fall, he would be there to help me get up again.
He taught me to walk away from a bad relationship, regardless of what the world said.
He taught me to be a woman in a man's world and to be proud of it.
I know that, no matter how old I am, I will always be his little princess. There will always be a place on his knee that belongs only to me.
Thank you, Daddy, for being the one man who has loved me unconditionally for 25 years.
Smriti Lamech, 25 years, Hyderabad
My best friend
I am 15 years old. At this age, every girl wants a close companion with whom she can share everything. You need someone who can be your best friend and your adviser at the same time.
In my life, this person is my Daddy. He taught me how to move on, to discipline one's life and believe in oneself. He has shown me what is friendship means and how it should be maintained.
I am fortunate to have him as my Dad. He is my best friend. I love him the way he is. I always will.
Preethi Kunchala, 15 years, Hyderabad
My Dad, my teacher
I am six years old so I asked my Mom to write my feelings for my Papa
He is my best friend. He tells me what is right and what is wrong, why I should do something or not do something.
He always says you can achieve everything you want as long as your objectives are good and positive.
He plays with me, he teaches me, he guides me, he sings and dances with me, he takes me to different places during my holidays. He brings me lots of gifts. He tells me one story every day. He loves me a lot. I love him too.
Charul Rastogi, 6 years, Mumbai
He loves me as a mother and a father
There is a photo in my home of me as a one-year-old, cuddled in my father's arms.
He wanted me to become a software engineer. Though I was an average student, he continued to encourage me. Today, I have fulfilled his dream.
He lost his mother when he was just six years old. Maybe that is why -- even though my Mom loves me -- he loves me as a mother and a father.
His faith in God is unbelievable. If there is anything good and spiritual in me, it is because of my father who is a very spiritual and emotional person.
Vivek Baranwal, 24 years, New Delhi
The daughter of a self-made man
Having a loving and nurturing father is as important for a child's happiness, well-being and social and academic success as having a loving and nurturing mother. This is what I have learnt from my father's presence in my life.
He has always been there with me.
Whenever I needed to boost my confidence, Dad praised me so much that all my fears disappeared. It is his confidence in me that has made me such a smart, confident and modest girl.
I like experimenting with new things. I always take Dad in confidence, so I know am not doing anything wrong.
Dad always sits beside me when I am not well. When I had to undergo surgery, I slept peacefully while he stayed awake. The first thing I saw when I opened my eyes was Dad's smiling face.
He found a good life partner. I married him, confident Dad would not make a wrong decision. I am happily married today.
I see his reflection in my personality and feel proud I am daughter of a self-made man.
Nishi Kumar, 30 years, Kolkata
My Papa Daddy
Dad was always there
My father, my friend
'Papa, please come back'
Illustration: Uttam Ghosh
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