Small steps Big leaps

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malviya-nagar-incidentAN UNUSUAL GOAL

A thief made the mistake of thinking that he could get away with it on 20 August in Malviya Nagar, New Delhi. Incidentally, in the same locality, a group of teenagers had decided to play football at the time of the snatch-and-run attempt. Little did either of them know that the ‘goal’ would be an unusual one. At 12:30 am, an Uzbek national woman was returning to her friend’s place, when a thief who had been following her for some time, assaulted her and snatched her phone. Hearing her shouts for help, the boys ran after the thief and were able to corner him in a by-lane. Later identified as Sooraj, the thief was taken under police custody and the mobile phone was rightly returned to its owner. This incident may well be indicative of the coming of a society that is intolerant towards crime.

11A MAN’S ROA D TO HUMANITY

If it hadn’t been for IAS officer Armstrong Pame, a motorable road to a remote village in Manipur would have been a long time waiting. Pame has initiated a project of building a 100-km road sans the government funding. An amount of 101 crore was sanctioned by the Centre in 1982 but the project was never completed. Many villagers had died during an outbreak of tropical diseases as patients could not be taken to hospitals on time due to the absence of motorable roads. Most doctors were also reluctant to visit the place to treat the patients. Sensing the deplorable situation, Pame with some help from his friends arranged the doctors to treat more than 500 patients. A decision to build the Tamenglong-Haflong Road with the help of his family and villagers was thus taken by Pame. A Facebook page, seeking donations was created, and an overwhelming response culminated in a collection of 1.2 lakh. Donations are still pouring in from all over.

12YOUNGER WAYS TO HYGIENE

A group of students based in Mumbai with their initiative Swachhlay is trying to bring about change in the city’s hygiene by ensuring cleaner public toilets and sanitation. The young and ambitious team of Arsh Mogre and Tanvi Nathwani who are 16 years old, along with core committee members Shivam Jinda and Ranim Munshi constantly interact with local citizens, municipal corporation authorities and students, etc to meet their objectives. To start with, they have already begun optimising public toilets at bus depots on a trial basis. The other agendas in their list are: cleaning the polluted Mithi river, cleaning hospitals and schools and constructing innovative bio toilets. The members of Swachhalay are gaining the support of MP Poonam Mahajan who is proud of the nation’s young minds working for a cause.

ruchika-sethiGIVING UP FOR THE BETTER

Ruchika Sethi is no ordinary woman. On learning that her new-born daughter Manavi has special needs, she gave up her career as a country manager in an MNC to take care of her. Realising that the biggest deterrent to a holistic development and progression of a child with disability are the attitudinal barriers, traditional beliefs and the existing policies, Ruchika joined a parents’ network group to share her experience and advocate inclusion in schools and other societies through a radio talk show Ek Nai Soch Ek Nai Disha on community radio channel Gurgaon Ki Aawaz. Collaborating with civic authorities, designing awareness material and then printing banners with her own money have become a regular part of her activities. Despite daunting personal challenges, Ruchika works with Clean Gurgaon to initiate Why Waste Your Waste, a campaign launched by her to implement solutions for a Zero Waste culture. Sethi believes in changing the things around her one step a time.

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