November 8, 2009 10:20:31 pm
Mohana Damlearns how Deepak Kumar Kundu has been lending a helping hand to people in distress
He may have been shattered when his first wife passed away way back in 1993. However,with time Deepak Kumar Kundu learnt to transform this loss into fond memories and relive the dream that he once shared with his wife — the dream to offer help to those who are in need.
Fifty-year-old Deepak,popularly known as Bapi,is a resident of Sodhpur in North 24-Parganas. He finds time not only for his profession as a railway employee but also dedicates his daily life to be part of the welfare trust which he along with some well-wishers started in memory of his wife,Mira Kundu,16 years ago. Today hundreds from all over Bengal flock to Mira Kundu Smriti Raksha Committee trust which treats people at a minimal cost,provides free of cost medical advice,runs a library for students and has a blood donation bank.
Born in a family of six siblings,Bapi was the eldest among the brothers. He has battled many a hardship in life from a very tender age and from very close quarters like many others in the society. However,what makes him different from others is his desire and knack to help those who are in need and are helpless. From donating blood,to helping during natural disasters like tsunami,to lending a hand to one who is not wanted by the society,Bapi lives silently the life of a saint,as it were,in disguise.
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The railway employee vividly calls to mind the day when Mira,without batting an eyelid,parted with her favourite bagle to help an acquaintance get her daughter married. The Good Samaritan spent his childhood in Beliaghata and did his schooling from Beliaghata Shanti Sangha and college from Bangabashi. His father,who ran a business of decorators,earned a meager amount to feed the family let alone give his children education. At one point of time,Bapi used to attend night college and spent the entire day working in a plastic factory to earn Rs 5 per day.
His love and passion to come to others’ rescue did not result from his wife’s death. Even in 1978,when news of an unknown person dying in a public hospital reached his ears,Bapi was the first to reach the spot to donate his blood.
However,following his wife Mira Kundu’s death,Bapi took the onus of providing medical services and blood to people from all sections of society. Mira Kundu Smriti Raksha Committee at Block C Plot Number 387 in Sodhpur now proudly provides two to three bottles of blood each day.
“We receive patients from Purulia,Birbhum,Bankura,Midnapore,Kharda,Madhyamgram which includes thalassaemic patients. We have a library for students for a membership cost of only Rs 5; ECG treatment for Rs 20 and blood sugar treatment for Rs 15. We provide allopathy medicine for Rs 3. The doctors and people associated with the trust put in their services without asking for fees,” said Bapi. While the first ambulance was bought by selling off his Life Insurance Corporation policy,Bapi has yet to get one more this month. The ambulance service of the trust has gained name for its competence and efficiency.
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