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Indian bravehearts who know nothing about fear

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New Delhi: This lot of people is full of energy, bravery. They are young and they have no fears. They do not have any hesitation in putting their life at risk to save others.

They are the special 25 brave sons and daughters of India, who saved several lives while putting themselves in life-threatening situations and not worrying about their own well-being. Hailing from different parts of the country, they received the National Bravery Awards for 2015 from President Pranab Mukherjee at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Friday evening for showing exemplary courage without expecting anything in return.

On Tuesday, these brave hearts were part of the Republic Day parade on the magnificent Rajpath, with the president taking the salute and his French counterpart Francois Hollande the chief guest.

Gaurav Kawduji Sahastrabuddhe (15), Shivampet Ruchitha (8), Arjun Singh (16), Aromal S.M. (12), Ramdinthara (15), Rakeshbhai Shanabhai Patel (13), Nilesh Revaram Bhil (9), Joena Chakraborty (10), Bhimsen alias Sonu (10), Kashish Dhanani (10), Vaibhav Rameshwar (9), Dishant Mehndiratta (12), Chongtham Kuber Meitei (12), Angelica Tynsong (13), Mohit Mahendra Dalvi (14), Nithin Philip Mathew (13), Sarwanand Saha (15), Beedhhovan (14), Anandu Dileep (14), Maurice Yengkhom (14), Abhijith K.V. (15), Sai Krishna Akhil Kilambi (14), Muhammad Shamnad (14), Abinash Mishra (17) and Shivansh Singh (13) are the courageous children who saved lives of others without fearing for their own.

Two of them – Gaurav Kawduji Sahastrabuddhe of Maharashtra and Shivansh Singh of Uttar Pradesh – were honoured posthumously as they died while helping others in trouble.

Sahastrabuddhe died on June 3, 2014, while trying to save four boys from drowning in a lake. They were playing near Ambazari lake in Nagpur district when one of them slipped and fell into it.

On seeing this, the other three dived into the water to rescue him but they too started drowning. Sahastrabuddhe then jumped into the lake and saved them one by one but he himself got so tired in the process that he could not save himself and died.

Similarly, Shivansh Singh died while trying to save his friend Vivek, who fell in the Saryu river while bathing.

Vivek was in deep water and was drowning when Shivansh Singh reached there to help him. He tried his best and brought Vivek near the shore. However, Vivek had died by that time and Shivansh Singh also died after a while as he got very tried in the process.

Their mothers received the award from the president on behalf of their brave sons.

The bravehearts, who looked cheerful after receiving their awards, had one sentiment in common that they would serve the country or would continue helping people in need as they grow up.

“I would like to serve the nation as I grow up,” Rakeshbhai Shanabhai Patel told agencies, adding: “We all should help each other in whatever way we can.”

“Serving the nation is my dream. I think we should continue to serve our country in whatever way we can,” he said.

Patel had saved a boy from drowning. He struggled for over 35 minutes in a well that the boy had fallen into while playing.

Joena Chakraborty helped her father retreive his mobile phone from a miscreant as she caught him the leg while he was trying to run away after snatching the device. “Anybody

who has done something wrong is to be challenged,” Chakraborty said.

“The moment I realised that my father’s mobile phone was snatched by a man, I, without loosing a second, started chasing him. He had a blade in his hand but it did not deter me to grab him by his legs,” she said. Passers-by caught the snatcher and handed him to the police.

Sarwanand Saha of Chhattisgarh, who saved a man from drowning in flood water, said that helping others in difficult situations should come naturally to people.

“I was returning from school when I saw a man drowning. I immediately jumped into the water and pulled him out of it,” he told IANS, adding that he did not fear for his own life as “it all happened without any warning”.

On what he would like to do after completing his education, Saha said serving the nation was his dream and he will try to join the defence forces.

He, however, also believed that one can serve the country even without being in the forces as “serving the less privileged could also be very satisfying”.(Sushil Kumar, IANS)(Image-PIB)

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The major Challenge is to make the Youth of the Country Entrepreneurial and not Job Seekers : Venkaiah Naidu

"The challenge for us is to make the youth entrepreneurial, and not become job seekers," Venkaiah Naidu said pointing to the NDA government's various initiatives.

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Venkaiah Naidu
Venkaiah Naidu. Wikimedia Commons
  • At a time of tepid job growth and continuing income disparities, the major challenge is to make the youth of the country entrepreneurial and not job seekers, Vice President  Venkaiah Naidu said on Thursday.

“Disparities continue to remain in India and so there is a need for inclusive growth… there is the need to take care of the suppressed, oppressed and depressed,” Venkaiah Naidu said at the Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust’s (BYST) silver jubilee celebrations here with Britain’s Prince Charles as the chief guest.

“The challenge for us is to make the youth entrepreneurial, and not become job seekers,” Venkaiah Naidu said pointing to the NDA government’s various initiatives to encourage youth enterprises like Startup India, Standup India and the Mudra financing scheme for underprivileged sections.

Modelled on Prince Charles’ Trust for business startups, BYST, founded by Lakshmi Venkatesan, daughter of former President R. Venkatraman, is engaged in building rural entrepreneurship — “grampreneurs” — as also enterprise among under-privileged sections, which includes business mentoring. The current BYST chairman is Bajaj Group chief, Rahul Bajaj.

“Without mentoring, it would be very difficult to set up startups, with all the business, marketing and other vital issues involved in the first two-three years,” Prince Charles said in his address at the International Mentoring Summit organized by BYST to mark its 25 years.

“What amazes me are the sheer number of jobs these young entrepreneurs had created. The aim of such a project should be to create a virtual cycle of creating entrepreneurs who can then invest in the future of business,” Charles said referring to his trust.

BYST was officially launched in 1992 by Prince Charles and expanded its operations to six major regions of India.

Out of these six regions, four — Delhi, Chennai, Pune and Hyderabad — run the urban programme while two regions — Haryana and Maharashtra — run the rural programme.(IANS)

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India sends Emergency Fuel Supplies to Sri Lanka

According to Indian public broadcaster Doordarshan, Modi assured all assistance from India to Sri Lanka following Siriena's request for emergency fuel supplies and petrol shipments.

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emergency fuel supplies
India is sending additional fuel to Sri Lanka, confirmed PMO onTwitter (representative image) Wikimedia

New Delhi, November 9, 2017 : Following reports of Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) rejecting a shipment of petrol from Lanka IOC (LIOC), the Sri Lankan subsidiary of Indian Oil, India on Wednesday made emergency fuel supplies to Sri Lanka following a telephonic conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena.

“In the telephone conversation with Sri Lankan President @MaithripalaS, PM @narendramodi conveyed that India is sending additional fuel to Sri Lanka and assured India’s continued support for development cooperation,” the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) tweeted.

According to Indian public broadcaster Doordarshan, Modi assured all assistance from India to Sri Lanka following Siriena’s request for emergency fuel supplies and petrol shipments.

LIOC has made available 3,500 kilo litres of its own stock to CPC, Doordarshan said in a shared tweet.

A ship with an additional 21,000 kilo litres of petrol also left for Sri Lanka and additional petrol is being made available from Kochi refinery in Kerala.

Citing CPC sources, the Sunday Times said an emergency fuel supplies’ shipment that arrived at the Colombo harbour on October 17 had been tested for a second time and rejected on a quality test.

However, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said he did not agree that LIOC was responsible for the current fuel shortage in the country and said two oil shipments would be arriving in the country within two day, acording to a report in the Colombo Page.

“Apart from petrol shipment arriving on November 8, another shipment is due from India on November 9, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe informed the parliament on Tuesday responding to a question raised in the parliament regarding the fuel crisis,” the statement said.

It said that Wikremesinghe said a discussion was held with the Indian High Commissioner in this regard and the Indian ship would arrive either November 9 or 10. (IANS)

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Rape Survivors in India Still Face Humiliation with Two-Finger tests and Barriers to Justice says Human Rights Watch

Indian Rape survivors still face barriers in justice and humiliation with two-finger tests, reported the Human Rights Watch

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Rape Survivors
Rape survivors face humiliation during investigation. Pixabay.

New Delhi, Nov 9: Five years after the Nirbhaya gang rape case in Delhi, rape survivors are still facing barriers to getting justice in India, Human Rights Watch said on Wednesday.

Rape survivors in India face significant barriers to obtaining justice and critical support services despite legal and other reforms adopted since the December 16, 2012 gang rape-murder of a 19-year-old physiotherapy intern in the national capital, who came to be known as ‘Nirbhaya’, said the international human rights NGO in an 82-page report “Everyone Blames Me: Barriers to Justice and Support Services for Sexual Assault Survivors in India” released on Wednesday.

The report said women and girls who survived rape and other sexual violence often suffered humiliation at police stations and hospitals.

“Police are frequently unwilling to register complaints, victims and witnesses receive little protection, and medical professionals still compel degrading two finger tests. These obstacles to justice and dignity are compounded by inadequate healthcare, counselling, and legal support for victims during criminal trials of the accused,” an HRW statement said.

“Five years ago, Indians shocked by the brutality of the gang rape in Delhi, called for an end to the silence around sexual violence and demanded criminal justice reforms,” said Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia Director of HRW.

“Today, there are stronger laws and policies, but much remains to be done to ensure that police, doctors, and courts treat survivors with dignity,” she said.

The HRW said it conducted field research and interviews in Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan — selected because of their large number of reported rape cases — as well as Delhi and Mumbai.

The report details 21 cases — 10 cases involving girls under the age of 18.

Rape survivors
Rape survivors feel harassed at police stations and hospitals. Pixabay.

The findings are drawn from more than 65 interviews with victims, their family members, lawyers, human rights activists, doctors, forensic experts, and government and police officials, as well as research by Indian organisations.

“Under the Indian law, police officers who fail to register a complaint of sexual assault face up to two years in prison. However, Human Rights Watch found that police did not always file a First Information Report (FIR), the first step to initiating a police investigation, especially if the victim was from an economically or socially marginalised community.

“In several cases, the police resisted filing the FIR or pressured the victim’s family to ‘settle’ or ‘compromise’, particularly if the accused was from a powerful family or community,” the statement said.

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It said that lack of witness protection law in India makes rape survivors and witnesses vulnerable to pressure that undermines prosecutions.

The human rights body said that some defence lawyers and judges still use language in courtrooms that is “biased and derogatory” toward sexual assault survivors.

“The attempt at shaming the victim is still very much prevalent in the courts,” Rebecca Mammen John, a senior criminal lawyer in Delhi, was quoted in the statement. (IANS)