Do you remember when was the last time you donated anything to the needy or done something for a cause? I don’t want to make you feel small but stop and think. Giving away a pair of your used favorite jeans or maybe sweaters, toys, funds, you start feeling at peace but how often do you do it?
Well, you may be very generous as a person but can you imagine giving away all what you have earned with your hard work in a lifetime, just in a blink for welfare of others? It really needs a great kind heart and humane soul to do such act of humanity. I have no words to express how small I felt reading about the Daliya couple from Surat, Gujarat.
The couple, Narottam Bhai (98 years old) and his wife Laxmi Ben (85 years old) have donated their lifetime earned property of worth 180 Crores to many educational organizations and other welfare groups! They have built a school and they have shifted to a very simple life of an old-age home leaving behind their posh habitat in Adajan area. Isn’t it such a selfless act?
Well, our team was deeply touched learning about it and Nishit Jariwala (Founder of BuddyBits.com) himself set-out to interview this amazing couple to know more. They weren’t happy to be interviewed; the sudden limelight focus is disturbing their privacy. After convincing them that it was just a meeting, we want nothing but to know them, they shared their story. Here are some excerpts from that inspiring meeting,
Lakshmi Ben was an independence activist and was in politics with Morarji Desai (Indian independence activist and the fourth Prime Minister of India). So when asked about her views on current politics, this was what she had to say,
“Politics at that time was so different than the politics today. Politicians were selfless. They used to sacrifice their time and money for people. Hitendra Desai (Indian independence activist and former Chief Minister of Gujarat) donated 300 Bigha land at that time. Leaders at that time were real heroes.” She added, “If you want to see the difference between now and then, ask today’s politicians to donate something for the people of India. They all just want to take from people today. True leadership and patriotism is missing in today’s politics.”
Narottam Bhai was a teacher and used to teach Gujarati subject in school. He used to support Lakshmi Ben in her fight for India. In the name of family, they just have each other, they don’t have kids.
When we asked about the reason behind moving to old-age home, the couple became uncomfortable. So we didn’t force them to tell the reason.
But according to us, their age can be the reason for moving to the old-age home. They have no family, Narottam Bhai can’t hear properly and they can’t afford to live in home alone at this age. So they might have moved to the old-age home.
On asking about their current expenses, they answered,
“We have to pay 3000 rupees per month to stay in this old-age home. Lunch, dinner, two times of tea, electricity and rent for the room; everything is included in this 3000 rupees. This amount is nothing in today’s time of inflation.” said Narottam Bhai.
“In today’s selfish world, humanity still exists. Many people are donating to the trust of our old-age home. We are thankful to them.” said Lakshmi Ben.
(It’s heart-breaking to know, they have also paid the expenses of their cremation in advance.)
Next we asked them how they spend their time, to which Lakshmi Ben answered,
“We have a TV here. And many school and college students visit us on weekends. They don’t know anything about our lives or why we are here; but they often seem to enjoy with us. This is how we are spending our lives here.”
When we asked them for a photograph, the couple wasn’t ready, so we are adding representational picture in this article. And that way the meeting came to an end, it wasn’t a mere interview, it was a life-changing opportunity to meet such inspiring people. They have done a deed, so big but they do not want to be in limelight, it’s a selfless act, not for attention-seeking. Modesty at its peak, isn’t it?
It’s just an amazing standard example of how helpful and generous people can be. Unaffected of what they might have to face in future and giving away all they have in a quick decision without having a second thought in their minds needs a brave heart. The words of appreciation are very less in what they’ve done. Many of us think of doing things but when it comes to actually act very often we step back giving excuses to support our cowardly act.
Well, they have earned so much respect in my eyes and have inspired me to do a deed or two selflessly for others. And here I am writing this so that my words reach you and inspire you too because our society needs humanity. I am not asking you to give away all you have earned in your whole life, but think about helping people and let us contribute in creating a healthier and more humane society; after all we are a big whole family.
Get up and act, make a heart smile, offer a hand to help and you will feel like a king with a golden heart!
[This story was first published on BuddyBits Stars on 14 March, 2014.]