Today I was touched by a series Rediff is doing on Mumbai Slum dwellers. This is the story which touched me the most. A youngster full of hope struggling due to poverty. I kept wondering what I could do for him or people like him; apart from donations probably nothing much! Well, yups, a wish did flutter in my mind, How can the super duper rich people of Mumbai [ for that matter across the world ] live in sheer luxury when such extreme poverty exist in our country. Well, I have nothing against earning and accumulating wealth but surely against balant display of wealth! e.g. the Ambanis, How can Sr. Ambani brother live in sheer wasteful luxury of a billion dollar 24 floor complex or how does his wife travel in millions worth jet with no real purpose of journey when they know for fact that many many children go without food, education and decent living condition just some meters away from their luxurious homes?! I just don't get it! I couldn't have slept with out giving up considerable amount of wealth each and every day!
just to clear my conscience, I am not critiquing without any action on my part; I do contribute amble or rather a component of my income in charities every year ... Also most of my ownings are rather practical and minimum is 'luxury' so to speak.
So just as a wish since I have not much capacity to make difference; People who have that much wealth; please share it with have nots!
And I am happy to share the information that such feats have happened in world before:
Warren Buffett, pledged to donate $37 billion - about 85 per cent of his $44 billion fortune - to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Well Bill Gates donated couple of billion dollars to the charity in beginging and he plans to give to charity 95% of his wealth before his death.
I hope the weathy of our desh make a note of this.
I am copying the post from Rediff in verbatim below.
John Shetty, Deepak Chawl, Malad, Mumbai
John Shetty is a teenager brimming with confidence. He is 17, passionate about cricket and aspires to make it to the Indian cricket team one day.
"Yes, one day I will surely play for India," he says confidently about the unofficial national game of the country.
"I'm an all-rounder (he bats and bowls right-handed), just like Yuvraj Singh [Images]," he smiles. In addition to flamboyant left-hander Yuvraj, John also loves to watch pace sensation Ishant Sharma [Images] in action.
His passion for cricket motivates John to wake up at 5 every morning. By 6 he completes his morning chores -- the common toilet is shared with scores of other families in his neighbourhood, where he has to queue up for at least 15 minutes each morning. He then leaves home to wash cars at the residential buildings nearby, for which he earns Rs 1,000 every month.
"Out of this, I pay Rs 500 every month to play cricket at Azad Maidan [a prominent Mumbai common ground where several clubs play cricket]," he says. "The rest is deposited in my mother's savings bank account so that I will have enough money to pay for my education later."
John, who lives in a 12 by 12 tenement room in a slum located close to the InOrbit Mall in Malad, lost his father when he was only nine. John says his father died after being run over by a train. Ever since, he has been fending for himself.
Though his mother was given a job in place of his father in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, where she works in the conservancy department (staff that sweep roads and clean gutters), John wants to be a self-made man one day.
"I started washing vehicles after my Class X exams, two years back. I have taken a break from studying so that I can earn enough to complete my studies at least till Class XII," says John, who doesn't want to bother his mother with the cost of his education.
His elder brother did not study beyond Class VIII and is currently working with the BMC's conservancy department too. "My sister doesn't go to school. She is not intelligent enough."
Halfway through the conversation, John says he has to rush. "I have a match today at Azad Maidan and I don't want to be late."
Though he hasn't heard of Slumdog Millionaire, the film about a Mumbai slum that has won four Golden Globe [Images] awards, John is an avid movie-goer. "I make it a point to see any film that stars Hrithik Roshan [Images]. I also love to watch Tamil superstar Vijay," he adds quickly.
A native of Viluppuram district in Tamil Nadu, the last two generations of John's family have spent their lives in Mumbai trying to make a living. They have been sending some money back home for family who cannot make it to the city of their dreams.
Despite his present struggle, John believes it is just a matter of time before a great future awaits him in the cricketing stadiums of the world.
Readers who wish to help John can contact:
Room No. 135
Behind Kamladevi Mittal College
Malad West, Mumbai - 400064
5 years ago