My school was in front of a slum and as a 7 year old child I used to feel something different seeing that sight but would never understand why or what. I never shared this with anyone and just felt helpless. I always had goosebumps seeing slums and needy people. As I grew up, went to college and was capable enough of doing something for the people of that slum, I went back, back to the place from where the seed of giving back to the society was planted deep in my heart. During these years besides being a student, I worked for different social causes, founded an organization “Youth Alliance” and tried to learn the basic problems of society. At the age of 22, I was there, in front of my old school from where it all started. I asked them about their problems, convinced them to send the kids to school and helped them as much as I could.
But the need was endless, it was just 15 - 20 families in front of school and there are millions of such families in our country. I stepped back and thought why poverty is still prevalent in our country and that too at such a large scale. Why don’t we have clean drinking water? Why can’t we challenge illiteracy and throw it out ? And many other such questions came to my mind. I came up with many answers such as corruption, ineffective policies, corrupt politicians, government, lack of awareness (about our rights) among people etc. What struck me the most was politicians and government. Because it is the place from where policies are drafted and politicians are the people who have to execute them. A politician is elected by the people and hence he/she should be held accountable for their sufferings. I think that a person who has seen ground realities and can connect to the masses, their needs, can better help in framing policies and work for the upliftment of the under privileged.
I joined Teach For India, which addresses the issue of education inequity, the root cause of many problems in India, to enhance my personal skills as a leader and work at ground level to understand the basic issues and address them. I feel that it has provided me a platform to work along with committed, passionate and like-minded young people and I am learning a
lot from each one of them. Currently I am working in a government school and here I have learned a lot about our system, like how difficult it is to change an ineffective and redundant policy; the root cause of failure for great initiatives taken by government etc. And now my beliefs that there is a need to change our policies have strengthened. And I feel that this can be done only by active involvement of youth in politics. We are a very young nation and youth of our nation have immense potential, we have the potential to change our nation and give it a new shape. We can make India a healthy, educated and a safe place to live in. I dream of an India which is free from poverty, hunger, illiteracy, corruption; an India with no urban and rural divide; an India which is a safe place to live in; an India where liberty, equality, fraternity and justice is not just written in the constitution, come let’s make it true, together we can change our nation.
I want to be a part of political system and transform the system that caters to the needs of 1.2 billion people. Let’s change the definition of politics in India, let’s start the politics of development, ethics and values.
I am sharing all this with you because if over a period of time, I get drifted away from why I joined politics, you can support me and bring me back on my track.
“Service before Self”