Monday, April 23, 2012

Oman industrialist good Samaritan for Vidarbha farm widows -IANS Reports

Oman industrialist good Samaritan for Vidarbha farm widows
Nagpur, April 23 (IANS) Widows of Vidarbha farmers who ended their lives unable to bear the stress of high debt have found a good Samaritan in an Oman-based industrialist.
Krishnakumar Taori, the Group Managing Director of Hasan Juma Backer Trading and Contracting Co. LLC, engaged in mega construction projects in Oman, has come to the rescue of the distressed community of eastern Maharashtra.
Taori, who was born to a cotton farmer in a remote village Ghuikhed in Yavatmal, travelled last week to Pandharkavada and distributed token relief to widows and orphans.
“He distributed saris and blankets to 200 widows in the village, plus Rs.1,000 cash per family which lost its breadwinner to the spate of suicides in the region,” Kishore Tiwari of the Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti (VJAS) told IANS here Monday.
Taori also agreed to bear the actual costs of vocational and academic education for the orphans from the village by way of fees and educational material, Tiwari added.
Saddened by the plight of his erstwhile native region, Taori, who earned his engineering degree from Nagpur, will return next week to finalise plans to set up a technical institute in his native village, Ghuikhed, he said.
“Taori will hold meetings with government and other officials to hammer out the modalities for setting up an ITI in this area which would immensely benefit the young population, especially the orphans.”
Explaining Taori’s largesse, Tiwari said he (Taori) was deeply disturbed by the spate of farmland suicides which have continued unabated in Vidarbha since the past few years.
“Accordingly, he decided to take the first step and distributed the token aid in memory of his mother, Kamlabai Taori to the widows of Pandharkavada village,” Tiwari said.
Since the past five years, Taori is engaged in providing free education to tribal children of the backward Melghat in Amravati district through the Eklavya Vidyalaya of Vanvasi Kalyanashram.
According to Tiwari, Taori now wants to increase his social presence by taking up the responsibility to educate the orphans, especially girls, to make them economically independent.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Now, she wants to write about farmers' agonies-TIMES OF INDIA

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Now, she wants to write about farmers' agonies

NAGPUR: In 1998 Ramdas Ambarwar, a farmer at Telang Takli village in Kelapur taluka of Yavatmal district, committed suicide unable to bear the piling debt burden. He was the only bread-earner and with his death the world came crashing down for his widow Saraswati and four daughters. Their youngest daughter, Manju, was just over five then. Since that day, life has been an endless struggle for the Ambarwar family.

For Manju, now 19, Wednesday brought a ray of hope as she secured admission in journalism course of Nagpur University. "I want to pursue journalism. That way I can chronicle life and times of Vidarbha farmers. As the daughter of a farmer who committed suicide, I have seen it all from close quarters and suffered every moment," Manju told TOI. She wants to sensitize people and the government about the miserable conditions in which farmers depending on vagaries of nature and mercy of policymakers have to live.

"After father's death, mother had to look after the farming work and also run the family. She did not buckle down and gave us all strength to get along in life. She arranged for marriage of two of my elder sisters Sushma and Meenakshi after they had studied up to Class XII. My third sister, Jayshree, was in XII when a serious kidney ailment struck her. Mother wanted her to pursue a professional course as she was a science student. But Jayshree could not survive. Another of my mother's dream was shattered," said Manju. The already distressed family could hardly afford the costly medical treatment and got into even more financial trouble.

Amid all this, the youngest sibling continued her studies. After primary education in the village, she went to nearby Umri to study up to XII and then commuted daily by ST bus to Pandharkawda for the college. This year she graduated in arts. Visibly happy after securing admission to bachelor of mass communication course at the University campus here, she feels she is a step closer to her ambition of being a journalist. "As a kid, I was impressed by the reporters who regularly visited our home to write about farmer suicides in Yavatmal district. I made up my mind to be a journalist and write on the issue from my personal experience of pain and sufferings," said Manju.

"I remember, soon after father's suicide the then chief minister Narayan Rane came to our village. At a function organized to hand over compensation cheque of Rs 1 lakh several promises for welfare of farmers were made. Among the promises that were never kept was the one providing free education for children of farm suicide victims," she recalled.

"Thank god for the grit and courage of my mother that we survived the hard times. Also Kishore Tiwari and his Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti came to our rescue and stood by my mother. I have no idea how I will meet the cost of studying and living in a big city like Nagpur. I only hope I realize my ambition and lend a helping hand to my mother back in the village," says Manju.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Action-Aid Healing Touch to Dying Vidarbha Farmers.

Action-Aid Healing Touch to Dying Vidarbha Farmers and Tribals
Action-Aid Team headed Regional Manager Niraja Bhatnagar and Hinani Ravat recently toured farm suicide prone vidarbha region and visited villages Hiwara,Kawatha and Saikheda and discussed the issue of agrarian crisis in details ,large numbers of distressed farmers and farm widows .since june 2005 more than 8000 cotton farmers have committed suicides in west vidarbha region where as these villages hiwari ,kawatha and saikheda have already claimed 8,12,14 farm suicides respectively after the introduction of Bt.cotton seed in this region as all farmers are cotton growers. despair and distress level is too high to control as more than 4 million farm families are in deep distress and debt trapped . there is urgent need of food security ,health care,social system restoration and urgent availability of farm credit and relief aid to save these innocent victimization of millions of dying cotton farmers.

Action-Aid is working with vidarbha farmers to address agrarian crisis in long term and short term perspective .Earlier in August too Action-Aid Team headed regional manager Niraja Bhatnagar and programme manager Mudhukar Sanap and visited villages Takali,Mandavi, Sunna,Matharjun ,Zari, Maragoan in order o under stand issues of farming community and issues related to tribal land right , malnutrition,unwed mothers and toxic potable water containing flouried and arsenic and health hazards .Ecological disorder and migration kolam tribals due on going coal and lime stone mining projects were discussed at length with and decided to take initiative to address the hardships with proper intervention at all levels.
VJAS activist kishor tiwari ,mohan jadhav bhimrao naitam and suresh bolenwar was with action aid team .VJAS has welcome Action-aid intervention in on going vidarbha Agrarian crisis and thanked for solidarity farmers

Sunday, April 18, 2010

At age 101, TN woman takes up NREGS work-Times of India

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Female infanticide tells on sex ratio in Punjab-HINDU

Date:16/04/2010 URL:

Front Page

Female infanticide tells on sex ratio in Punjab

Vrinda Sharma

The evil is more prevalent among the educated and the rich: survey

“Even today birth of girl child is viewed as a bad investment for future”

PATIALA: “She was thrown in the garbage dump outside the village for dogs that ate her. Her only fault — she was the fourth girl born in a poor family,” said Harshinder Kaur, paediatric doctor here, recalling the first time she witnessed discrimination against female infants in Punjab's rural side. “Over a decade ago, I couldn't save that infant and ever since I try to speak for the girls who never lived,” said Dr. Kaur, who has been awarded by numerous governments across the globe for her work in eradicating the evil.

Rampant female foeticide continues to push the sex ratio of Punjab against females; unfortunately, the evil is more prevalent among the educated, the rich and the urban bred.

The 2006 National Family Health Survey shows that prosperity does little to curb the evil as Punjab's overall sex ratio at birth (considered a more accurate indicator of female foeticide) was 776 against 793 in 2001. In urban areas, it goes further down to 761:1,000.

“The data clearly contradicts the belief that people don't want daughters only due to the expense of dowry and marriage, the practice is more popular amongst the prosperous urban population who commit the crime to avoid perceived social disgrace of not having a son and escaping property division,” said Parveen Singhal, retired professor, who continues to work on the issue.

Education too has failed in curbing the practice as children born to mothers having Class 10 or higher education had a significantly lower sex ratio at 683:1,000 than illiterate mothers at 869:1,000. “My study on girl students of higher secondary schools in urban areas revealed that 78.8 per cent did not want to give birth to a girl child. I was shocked to find that educated girls from urban areas can discriminate against their own kind. They cited the deplorable condition of their mothers and restriction imposed on girls from family as the main reason,” said Dr. Kaur, adding that until the social status of women changed, the mindset would continue.

Chandigarh has a sex ratio of 777:1,000 and Fatehgarh Sahib district has the lowest ratio of 754:1,000. Examining the sex ratios at birth of second child makes it evident that son preference is affecting family-building strategies. The sex ratio of last births (number of females born per 1,000 males when the first child is a female) ranges from a low of 504 in Punjab, to 540 in Haryana.

However, Punjab's sex ratio of the second child when the first child is a male, goes up to a healthy 1,003:1,000, in other words, after one son, families are less inclined to go in for sex determination tests and foeticide.

Kamaljeet Gill, Professor of Economics at Punjabi University, said: “Even today, birth of a girl child is viewed as a bad investment for future but the poor still find the cost of raising a child to be nominal with respect to the income that the child might generate and also they cannot afford the cost of tests and abortion. The reform needs to begin with the prosperous, educated class which abort a female child due to their narrow patriarchal view, where sons are considered to be the only hope of old age and even after life.”

“Unchecked technology combined with affordability has made the practice a norm, and high and middle-income groups have completely shifted to female foeticide as a more ‘sanitary option' and female infanticide too is practised more in the form of abandoning few-days-old infants in bushes, public toilets, parks or garbage bins but the aim has not changed, no one wants to be son-less,” said Dr. Kaur.

“Statutory laws such as the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act and The Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques [Regulation and Prevention of Misuse] Act are not enforced strictly and doctors convicted open their clinics again.

© Copyright 2000 - 2009 The Hindu

Friday, March 26, 2010

Meet with the Universal Mother Sindhutai Sapkal-IBN-LOKMAT

Great Bhet with the Universal Mother Sindhutai Sapkal on IBN-Lokmat

IBN-Lokmat pays a tribute to Sindhutai Sapkal popularly known as the Universal Mother on the upcoming episode of Great Bhet. In an exclusive interview with Nikhil Wagle, Editor IBN-Lokmat, Sindhutai Sapkal will throw light on her struggling journey on Saturday 27th March 2010 at 9:30pm.

Great Bhet with the Universal Mother Sindhutai Sapkal on IBN-Lokmat

27th March 2010:

Born in the Vidarbha region in 1942, the brave lady Sindhutai is just a standard IV pass out, who now runs four ashrams in the state. ‘Mai’, as she is affectionately called, has contributed remarkably towards the fulfillment of basic needs including proper education to the underprivileged children.

She has till date taken care of over 1,000 children.

Married at a mere age of 9 to a groom who was 11 years elder than her, Sindhutai has lived a disgraced life. After almost committing suicide, she got her self together and started a new life. Sindhutai shares her despicable experience of singing and begging in the trains to earn her living.

Being recognized for her efforts, Sindhutai has 172 awards to her credit along with the prestigious awards like “Savitribai Phule Award” and the “Punyashlok Ahilyabai Holakar Puraskar”. The overwhelmed Sindhutai talks about her determination of living a second life with respect.
To witness this awe-inspiring story of Sindhutai Sapkal that inspires one to facelift with determination, tune into Great Bhet on IBN-Lokmat on Saturday, 27th March 2010, at 9:30pm.

You can also watch this Great Bhet episode on Sunday i.e. 28th March 2010 @ 12:00 pm & 5:00 pm.

For further information, please contact:
Pooja S / Amol B
Hanmer MS&L Communications Pvt. Ltd.2
9011087906 / 9867719424

Friday, March 19, 2010

Symbiosis Institute of Mass Communication visit to vidarbha

Symbiosis Institute of Mass Communication visit to vidarbha