January 15, 2004
Satyendra Kumar Dubey — an engineer with the golden-quadrilateral highway project — couldn’t have been bought over if the world’s wealth was kept at the doorstep of his ramshackle house in Siwan, Bihar.
While father Bageshwari Dubey had earlier refused to accept any funeral cheque and demanded only justice for the engineer murdered after trying to blow the whistle on corruption in the project, the family has now said it will accept financial aid, thanks to the efforts of one Mumbai man.
Shailesh Gandhi, president of IIT-Bombay Alumni, has convinced the Dubey family not to refuse the goodwill of a public that is determined to help. Satyendra Dubey, the second son of seven brothers and sisters, was the main breadwinner, supporting his parents, the education of his younger brother and two sisters.
‘‘Satyendra’s father had to take up a clerical job to sustain the family,’’ said Gandhi. ‘‘The IIT alumni wants to help the Dubeys… so I had decided to raise Rs 15 lakh through our alumni network,’’ he said.
While Gandhi has managed to collect cheques worth Rs 2.12 lakh from 51 donors, Satyendra’s younger brother Dhananjay said Infosys chief N.R. Narayana Murthy has pledged Rs 10 lakh. While Murthy was not available for comment, his office said he won’t talk to the media of his personal contributions. ‘‘Murthy spoke to me today from Bangalore wishing to give the amount,’’ said Dhananjay, a B. Tech student at BHU. ‘‘Looking at the moral support we have got, my family decided to accept financial aid as well.’’
He added that while the family had not wished to take any cash donations from either the government or the public earlier, Gandhi and a few close friends had advised him to look at ‘‘the practical side of things’’.
‘‘Bhaiyya never encouraged materialistic things. But education has been our priority,’’ said Dhananjay. He added that though there was no major hindrance to his or his sisters’ studies, the gesture was welcome.
The US-based S.K. Dubey Foundation has also collected about $16,000, of which half is for the Dubey family — about Rs 3.6 lakh.
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