Thursday, July 7, 2011

India Youth Icon Part 2

We reached Bengaluru by 6 in the morning. Here we had to meet with B. Manjunath family who resides at KGF (Kolar Gold Fields) in Bangarpet Taluk of Kolar District of Karnataka. KGF township is about 30 km from Kolar and 100 km from Bengaluru. The gold mines of KGF were closed down in 2001 due to reducing deposits. Around 1 pm we reached at KGF. The drive till KGF was astonishing and landscape was so vibrant. KGF township was small closed community area where mainly the families of the employees of Bharat Gold Mines Limited (BGML) reside.

We introduced ourselves with the help of an interpreter to Manjunath’s mother. It was obviously difficult to her to talk about his late son. Somehow she composed herself and showed us some pictures and numerous newspaper cuttings published in different national and regional dailies about his son's courage.

Manjunath’s Father came in the mean time and he agreed to give us interview.

M Shanmugam, Manjunath's father

Now a day a nation wide wave against corruption is going on and everybody is talking about getting black money back and debating on clauses of Lokpal bill. Some of them are politically motivated while few may want it genuinely, but there are people in every nook and corner of our society who are not just fighting against the root cause of corruption, but sacrificing their lives too. Manjunath was one of them.

Akhil Krishnan, Manjunath's Friend
He had these qualities since childhood and later his friend and classmate in IIM Lucknow Akhil, told us that he used to put some quotes on IIM canteen notice board on daily basis. Most of the time nobody even look at it but he was continuing to do so as his utmost duty. He has given his life but never compromised on corruption.

Here is Manjunath's part of film :

Due to tight schedule we didn’t had any time to visit places in Bengaluru and it was early flight to our next destination Kolkata. So we decided to retired in our hotel room. 

Next day 8 AM Kingfisher flight took us to Kolkata. Here we had to catch Sealdah Rajdhani Express to Dhanbad in Jharkhand for our next stop Giridih also in Jharkhand state. The time that we had left was utilized to famous Shiraz’s shop in park street for its mind boggling Biryani. Just heavenly! We forget everything and indulged ourselves in the aroma of mouth-watering dishes.

After that our 3 hours journey from Sealdah to Dhanbad begins. By 8 pm we reached to Dhanbad. Our local reporter had arranged a mahindra bolero and since single vehicle movement was not allowed due to naxalite threat so we had to wait till few vehicles and a police van on special request gathered to accompany us. It was pitch-dark night and dense forest on both side, and when we read a board that “don’t panic police is with you” then it actually embarks fear in us. Landmines are very common in this part of the country and once you travel outside your city area, your family members are always worried about your safety. Our driver and local friends were constantly getting calls from their family and they told us that it is not preferred to travel towards Giridih in dark.

Even in the absence of electricity, our night stay was made quite comfortable in some two star hotel with constant generator input.

In morning our journey started in the same Bolero, which accompanied us greatly in bad road conditions and then relatives and friends of late Kameshwar yadav had arranged some bikes because after a certain point no four wheel was able to drive in the narrow village road.

The landscape was simply awesome. Giridih is in the Chhotanagpur region of Jharkhand, and the area is mostly covered with bamboo and sal trees. However ground reality is not so romantic.

Village : Khatori, Prakhand : Devri, Jharkhand

The economy is dependant mainly on agriculture. Most of the villagers are deprived of basics. The same story as in most part of the country, agriculture depends on nature instead of scientific development, so people force to do bonded labor, when government took some initiative like NREGA scheme, then it gets affected with corruption. The family of Kameshwar yadav was in deep pain and suffering after his death and fortunately this incident unite the villagers to fight for a cause.

Kameshwar Yadav's Family
Kameshwar Yadav's wife
We came back to Giridih around 5 PM took some rest and then catch the train to Patna, Bihar for our next assignment.

Here is the Kameshwar yadav's part of film :

In Patna we were suppose to meet late Yogendra pandey’s family. He left a son, a daughter and his wife behind him. It was not easy to talk under such a situation. They have lost the faith in the system but maintained their belief in honesty and probably this gave them courage to talk about the incident.

Yogendra Pandey's family

Here is the Yogendra pandey part of film :

Same evening we left for Delhi. Family of Satyendra dubey is now living in NCR. We met his brother and father at his residence. His brother was quite furious about the system and father was running out of hope.

If my son would have got justice then I would have definitely asked others to follow the same path. Now how can I do so? Does anybody have answer to this?

Here is Satyendra Dubey part of film :

This is the final film that was showcased in the "Videocon India Youth Icon Award" on 25/10/2009

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