Differently abled 8-yr-old MP boy in spotlight after Modi’s Mann Ki Baat praise
Today in New Delhi, India
Feb 18, 2019-Monday
New Delhi
  • Humidity
  • Wind

Differently abled 8-yr-old MP boy in spotlight after Modi’s Mann Ki Baat praise

Narendra Modi’s mention of Tushar has pitchforked the family of a marginal farmer from obscurity to limelight.

india Updated: Nov 26, 2017 19:34 IST
Shruti Tomar and Punya Priya Mitra
Shruti Tomar and Punya Priya Mitra
Hindustan Times, Bhopal
Open defeccation free village,Madhya Pradesh,Balaghat district
Tushar Uradae with mother Anju and father Santosh outside their house in Kumhari village in Balaghat district of Madhya Pradesh.(HT Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mention of a differently abled boy’s passion to make his village open defecation free (ODF) in his Sunday radio address has brought the family of a marginal farmer under the spotlight in a remote village in Madhya Pradesh.

Speech and hearing impaired Tushar Uradae of Kumhari village in Balaghat district, some 450km southeast of the capital Bhopal, will turn nine on December 25. He has a younger sister.

Modi in his Maan ki Baat said: “You will be amazed to learn that Tushar, an eight year old differently abled lad from Madhya Pradesh had taken a firm resolve to make his village open defecation free. It was a young boy vis-à-vis an enormous task at hand. But his grit and determination were exponentially greater and mightier. The eight year old is speech impaired, but he used a whistle as an armament.”

Thanks to Tushar’s commitment he had already been made brand ambassador of the district in 2016, but the national recognition has made his family doubly proud. Now, Modi’s mention of Tushar has pitchforked the family from obscurity to limelight.

Talking to Hindustan Times over phone, Tushar’s father, Santosh, who is a marginal farmer with 2.5 acre of land, said his son was very delighted that his work had been recognized. “I am getting calls from various people and the villagers have flocked to our house congratulating me and my family. We are all feeling so proud of him.”

But it was less a feeling of pride and more of irritation when Tushar started taking part in the open defecation drive in the village in 2016. “He used to get up before 5 am, forcing everyone to get up and open the door for him. Initially he was the only young lad in the group that consisted of the sarpanch and others. Soon he attracted other children and they too joined the drive. But Tushar was the most sincere and was given the crucial job of blowing the whistle to warn anyone defecating in the open.”

IAS officer Bharat Yadav, who was earlier posted as the collector of Balaghat, said, “We were searching prominent personality of Balaghat to appoint as a brand ambassador of the district. When I came to know about Tushar, I visited his village and I found he really did commendable job. He was very passionate about this work. We appointed him as an ambassador and he became source of inspiration for others in the district.”

Tushar studies in Class IV in the local school in the village. His father is worried about his future. “He does not go to any special school, and has a tough time coping with his studies. I am worried about his future, but also hopeful that his determination will stand him in good stead,” Santosh said.

First Published: Nov 26, 2017 18:04 IST