Inderjit Handa: 1937-2023

Inderjit Handa

The family of Inderjit Handa has announced that the owner of Ottawa-based Handa Travel Group for over 45 years passed away in FEB.

Open Jaw's president, Nina Slawek, says, "Inderjit Handa was extremely well respected among his peers in the industry and had a reputation as a consummate professional."

Handa's son Alex posted this tribute on linkedin:

Thank You & Goodbye.

Every once in a while you meet someone radically different than the rest. My father was one of those people. He was fully of energy and kindness. Rather than talk about work he wanted to talk about your family or health. More likely than coming to a business meeting to make a deal he would come to share fruit & chai and good conversation.

He was a refugee at age 9 but it didn’t leave him bitter, he believed in the goodness of others. He taught in tough schools enjoying the challenge in finding the skills and goodness in his students. He started a health food store in the 70’s when no one knew what vitamins were. He ran a successful travel business through countless recessions and upheavals by retaining and treating his staff as family.

All fathers are very special. Mine was also my hero, mentor and then business partner. He was there to support and encourage me at every difficult time. He is not here today to help me through this. But his wisdom and spirit will be with me forever.

So the time has come to say Thank You & Goodbye to my father, Inderjit Handa, a true legend. He died peacefully last month.

Inderjit Handa 1937-2023

The initial news of my father's death was a shock. It was hard to believe that it was real. He was so healthy and full of energy that it didn't seem possible. It was hard to accept because he was so happy in recent years and had great plans with family, business and friends right in front of him. One of his favourite sayings was 'Man makes plans but god decides'. And so it was.

I wish that he was still here, that he had a few more years, that we all had a chance to say goodbye. But I can now see beauty in his death and understand that this was the right time for his soul to move on. He had found love and peace in this life. He lived a long, successful and healthy life. One could not ask for more. And while he didn't stay long enough to say goodbye, we will now always remember him the way he always was; full of life and positive energy until the very last breath.

It feels strange to say that his death was beautiful. But, it was fit for a saint and just the way he would have dreamt of. In India, in a peaceful setting, with intimate family and colleagues and following the traditions of his ancestors. I have shared some photos and stories on the website below.

Please visit www.misterhanda.com for details about the Life Celebration and to share photos and memories of his life.

Om shanti, Alex.

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