Written By: Sougat Chakraborty
Well we all are aware about the greatness of our nation “India”, but still there are some things we don’t know about our country and our fellow Indians who make this nation great.
Today we are going to know more about these missing pieces about our nation.
1. Ramesh Agrawal – The Man of Courage
An Environmental activist Ramesh Agrawal, who helped villagers stop a massive coal mining project in the State of Chhattisgarh.With a small internet cafe as his headquarters, Ramesh Agrawal organised villagers to demand their right to information about industrial development projects and succeeded in shutting down one of the largest proposed coal mines in Chhattisgarh. He was recently awarded Goldman Environmental Prize also Known “Green Nobel”.
2. Sepoy Harbhajan Singh – The Soldier Who guards the Border Even after 38 years of Death
Sepoy Harbhajan Singh of the 23rd Battalion of Punjab Regiment Resides in the beautiful valley near Nathula Pass.This soldier died near the Nathula Pass in eastern Sikkim – India while on duty. Baba Harbhajan Singh got drowned in a glacier during the 1962 China-India War. He was searched for everywhere & he was found five days later and was cremated with full military honors. Baba Harbhajan has been guarding the international boundary of the two Asian giants the China and India over the last three decades.
Even the army men on the other side of the international Boundary confirm that they had seen a man riding a horse all alone patrolling the border. Chinese do also worship him & during the flag meetings between the two nations at Nathula Post, the Chinese Soldiers have also set a chair aside for the saint.He had join Army on the post of Sepoy and after post death promotions, late soldier Baba Harbhajan Singh is today honored the rank of Honorary Captains. Ghost Soldier gets two months annual leave every year, Every year on September 14, a jeep departs with his personal belongings to the nearest railway station, New Jalpaiguri. A First Class berth is booked in the train in his name and his portrait, uniform and other belongings are brought by army officials to his native village Kuka in Kapurthala district for availing of his leave.
Weird! But it’s true.
3. Anand Kumar
The Indian Mathematician & a renowned columnist of various national & international mathematics journals & Magazines. He is well- known for the Super-30 ambitious programme started under the banner of Ramanujan School of Mathematics.
Super 30 hunts for 30 meritorious talents from among the economically backward sections of the society and shapes them for India’s most prestigious institution – the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT).By 2014, 308 of the 360 had made it to IITs and Discovery Channel showcased his work in a documentary. He has been invited by the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University to speak on his globally acclaimed effort to mentor students from the underprivileged sections for admission to IIT.
4. Narayanan Krishnan
The Indian Chef who turned to be Social Worker. He is award winning chef with Taj Hotels, Bangalore. It all started when he saw an old man eating his own human waste. He went to a nearby hotel and bought food for the man. Krishnan later described the experience: “I had never seen a person eating so fast, ever. As he ate the food, his eyes were filled with tears. Those were the tears of happiness.” He had realized the cause of his life and he gave up a good job offer in Switzerland to feed the hungry, the homeless and the destitute. Krishnan founded his non-profit Akshaya Trust in 2003.
5. Baba Amte
Murlidhar Devidas Amte popularly known as Baba Amte was a social activist who was particularly known for his work rehabilitation & empowerment of poor people suffering from Leprosy. He has been honored with several prestigious awards including international ones such as The Templeton Prize (popularly known as the Nobel Prize for Religion) and The Right Livelihood Award (popularly known as the Alternative Nobel Prize).
“I don’t want to be a great leader. I want to be a man who goes around with a little oil-can and, whenever he sees a breakdown, offers his help. To me the mechanic with the oil-can, that is my ideal in life…”
6. Sudha Murthy
Padma Shri Sudha Kulkarni Murthy is an Indian social worker and author. She is known for her philanthropic work through the Infosys Foundation. Among other things, she has initiated a move to provide all government schools in Karnataka with computer and library facilities. She also teaches computer science and writes fiction.
She was also the first woman engineer to be selected in Telco (now Tata Motors), Pune. She had written a postcard to JRD Tata complaining of the gender bias in Tata Motors (Telco then had a men-only policy) and she was invited for a special interview by Tata Motors. She was living in Pune from 1974–1981, later she moved to Mumbai. It was her savings of Rs. 10,000 that was instrumental in the founding of Infosys; N.R. Narayana Murthy proudly mentions this fact on several occasions.
7. Aruna Roy
A social and political activist. She was in the Indian Administrative Service from 1968 to 1975. She resigned in order to work with people’s issues. She is a founder and working member of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS) since 1990. Aruna Roy is a prominent member of many campaigns, including the NCPRI, Pension Parishad, PUCL, NAPM etc. She played a key role in incorporating strong citizen’s entitlements in the recently enacted Right to Information and National Rural Employment Guarantee Acts.
She was a member of the NAC in both its terms. She and the MKSS have been the recipient of many awards including the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership in 2000 and the prestigious LalBahadurShastri National Award for Excellence in Public Administration, Academia and Management in 2010. She and the MKSS Collective amongst many other recognitions have received the NaniPalkhiwalaAward , the Rule of Law Award in the World Justice Forum held in Barcelona, Spain in June 2011. She was listed as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by the TIME Magazine for 2011.
8. Rajendra Singh
Rajendra Singh, environmental activist based in Rajasthandedicated himself to defeating drought and empowering communities for several decades.Mr. Singh, popularly known as “Water Man of India”.Mr Singh uses a modern version of the ancient Indian technique of rainwater harvesting.It involves building low-level banks of earth to hold back the flow of water in the wet season and allow water to seep into the ground for future use.
He was recently awarded Stockholm Water Prize 2015 also known as “Nobel Prize for water”.
9. Sandeep Maheshwari
Sandeep Maheshwari is the Founder and CEO of ImagesBazaar, the world’s largest collection of Indian images. A world record holder in photography, he has also received many awards and accolades.He is a college dropout from a middle-class background, who started as a freelance photographer and faced countless adversities to become one of the most well-known entrepreneurs of India.
The Best thing about Sandeep is his Life Changing Seminars. He actually offers the advice that no other person can. Also major point of these seminars are that they are completely free of cost and his only perspective is to motivate and bring a change to the society.
10. E. Sreedharan
My favorite role model: E Sreedharan is a retired Indian Engineering Service (IES) officer popularly known as the “Metro Man”. He is credited for changing the face of public transport in India by his leadership for building the Konkan Railway and the Delhi Metro when he served as the managing director of Delhi Metro between 1995–2012. He was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India in 2001,the Padma Vibhushan in 2008,the Chevalier de la Légiond’honneur in 2005 and named one of Asia’s Heroes by TIME magazine in 2003.
I hope you all came to know to about some of the Unsung Heroes of this Great Nation.