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ಕೃಷ್ಣ ಶಾಸ್ತ್ರಿ - Krishna Shastry
ಪ್ರಾಣಿ ಹಕ್ಕುಗಳು, ಶುದ್ಧ ಸಸ್ಯಾಹಾರ, ಪರಿಸರ, ಆರೋಗ್ಯ ಇವೆಲ್ಲವನ್ನೂ ಒಳಗೊಂಡ ವೀಗನಿಸಂ ಎಂಬ ತತ್ವದಲ್ಲಿ ನಂಬಿಕೆ ಇಟ್ಟಿರುವ ಒಬ್ಬ ಸರಳ ಕನ್ನಡಿಗ ನಾನು.
ನನ್ನ ಇತರ ಆಸಕ್ತಿಗಳೆಂದರೆ ನೀತಿಶಾಸ್ತ್ರ, ಸಾರ್ವಜನಿಕ ನೀತಿಸಂಹಿತೆಗಳು, ಸಾರ್ವಜನಿಕ ಆರೋಗ್ಯ, ಆವಿಷ್ಕಾರಗಳು, ವಿಜ್ಞಾನ, ಕನ್ನಡ ಭಾಷೆ, ಭಾಷಾನೀತಿಗಳು ಇತ್ಯಾದಿ.

I am a simple Kannadiga following veganism, that cares about animal rights, pure vegetarianism, environment and health.
My other interest include ethics, public healthcare, public policies, innovation, science & technology, Kannada language and linguistic policies.
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Friday, January 27, 2012

When “Donation Request” became “Extortion”

"Life Lessons" learnt today, after hearing experiences of a person close to me:

1) When people approach us for 'donations', we need to be careful if we are planning to refuse their request. They might have political goonda(s) in their group (even if the group seems to be a mild one such as teachers' association)

2) If we have given money to other causes/groups in the recent past, then we should also know that it automatically gives all other groups right to seek donations from us, and it becomes our duty to give away more.

3) If we have been giving donations for several years and if we decide not to give this time, can we expect some politeness at least? Not at all; we should know that the earlier ones don't count. People have come all the way till our doorsteps, and they have every right to be angry and they can even threaten you if we refuse this time.

Long way to go India!


Details of the incident:

Today I feel a pain deep in my heart after learning that even a group such as teachers' association takes political goonda(s) along with them and threatens people if they don't give 'donations'. I wonder what kind of society and value system these 'teachers' are building.

This happened in my home town (Kasaragod, Kerala) today in one of the private hospitals, a well respected healthcare provider in the town. The hospital had recently adopted a policy not to give donations to anyone from the institute's behalf, irrespective of who is asking - political parties, religious groups or other kinds of organizations. There are several reasons, bad experiences that triggered such new policy.

The doctor who was in charge of finance politely explained (which he didn't have to, in the first place! Come on, it’s a donation, not a tax!) the reasons and refused the donation request. There was a goonda in the group who started with a mild threat "We know how to make you dance to our tunes".

The doctor got angry, but further explained as calmly as possible, that the institute was indeed giving away several donations over past 2 decades, but changed the policy now. Individual doctors in the institute, however, could be contacted for such requests, he made it clear. However, the goonda politician (who was not even a teacher) continued his threats and said "We will make patients stop coming to your place" (Of course, he didn’t care about anyone's healthcare; he cared only about the donation).

During further conversation(?), the goonda politician was deaf towards all the valid points presented by the doctor and instead made absolute disrespectful comments towards the doctors and the institute.

There was a teacher in the group, who incidentally was a patient of the doctor few years back; that teacher clearly knew the doctor's contribution towards the society's welfare and how thanklessly the society had repaid. He made futile attempts to stop the goonda, who was clearly out of control.

In the end, it only filled more contempt in the doctor's heart, and he further strengthened his determination not to give 'donations' anymore, to anyone. "Is this a donation or extortion?" he wondered, then shrugged his shoulders and continued with his work.

When the doctor finally narrated the story to me and said "I have seen enough world; let them do whatever they want; I am ready to face the consequences", I felt concerned about his well being, but didn't have a heart to hurt his pride by saying "It's ok, give them money and stay out of trouble".


Anonymous said...

I think this doctor is one of the few persons in this society who has the guts to stand up against people like these. The problem is our own society people turn a blind eye when something like this happens. If we have unity and if we can be there for each other, we can fight these people. But people want easy, comfortable and unruffled life in India, which in this case, his associates would prefer looking the other way instead of helping him. But i'm proud of this doctor who stood up against these people, and i'm sure even the goonda politician would have been surprised and would think twice before behaving like that again.

Mahesh said...

I feel doctor did right thing. Now a days fundraising for a cause has become profession of some people. There will not be any accountability for the money collected and spent. People who donate will not have any voice to raise question on the money they donated. Let the the goonda politician himself earn and donate if he is that much committed for society...

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