Thursday, February 26, 2009

Children of a lesser God- Not really!

Long back I was reading in one of the communities on Orkut – there were many students from IITK – our brightest and most talented stars – who wanted to do some charity. I was overwhelmed. I had felt an enormous sense of respect and happiness.

Nothing wrong with our genex I thought. They have their heart where it should be.

I am somehow uncomfortable with the word charity. It smacks of snobbery.

Long ago I was a supporter of “ Make a wish Foundation”. It was a foundation for the terminally ill children.

Later when I was in UK, I arranged some charity balls for the Tsunami victims. I was proud to see huge Indian gatherings in the Hilton (which always was kind enough to offer generous discounts) every time there was such an event. I also knew some NRIs who adopted a child and paid for his education till he completed his education in India.
They never saw the child but only got pictures and reports of his progress.

Last year when I came to India, we accidentally stopped in a village while on our way. It was a very defining experience. The villagers were very open hearted and I felt that I could do so much for them. I have decided to adopt that village once I return from the USA.

That reminds me of a young Indian I met in Manchester when I was sponsoring an event there. He came and asked me would my company be willing to sponsor him for an Indian tour. I asked him the purpose of his visit and he said that his dad was a nuclear scientist and that though technically he was British but his roots couldn’t be denied and would like to do something for the Indian villages. I politely excused myself as I thought these were some lofty ideals of a young and impractical mind.

I am not ashamed to say that I was wrong. One day when I was casually surfing through various channels I saw this young boy now a little wizened delivering a key address in the ‘Pravasi Divas’ meet. He had been living in India for the last two years.
I don’t know how much difference his stay did but sure made me proud of his attempt.

The success of Slumdog Millionaire has brought the focus on these children. Some one described them as Children of a lesser God. I strongly disagree. All they need is an opportunity. Take a look at the video and decide. Isn’t he smarter than us? ( read me !!!!!)

This is my ode to the undying spirit and the resilience of these kids.

Guys don’t get enraged when a Danny Boyle makes such films. The problem is within not without.See how we can try and make it not happen again. our weakness is our huge population. we can make it our strength. we can all come together and contribute what best we can.
It is not impossible. Remember Surat. All it needed was a will.

To borrow President Obama’s war song “ YES WE CAN”

I would request all the guys who want to help to come forward.

People, as usual. Your comments are always welcome.

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