Sulabh to ‘adopt’ Rahul Gandhi’s Kalawati

July 28th, 2008 - 4:24 pm ICT by IANS  


New Delhi, July 28 (IANS) Kalawati Bandurkar, the Maharashtra-based widow with nine children whose grim plight was narrated by Congress MP Rahul Gandhi in parliament, will be “adopted” by a leading non-government organisation. Sulabh International, which has done some major work in the area of sanitation, has decided to offer Rs.25,000 per month to her family that has been in dire straits after her farmer-husband committed suicide three years ago in his village in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra.

“It is a conscious decision to adopt Kalawati’s family,” said Bindeshwar Pathak, founder of Sulabh International, after Kalawati herself threatened to commit suicide, unable to make ends meet.

“Monthly financial assistance of Rs.25,000 for the next 20 years will ensure she is able to take care of her children,” Pathak added.

Gandhi had referred to two poor families of Shashi Kala and Kalawati in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra in his speech during the trust vote in the Lok Sabha July 22.

Stating that there was no electricity in the duo’s homes, Gandhi had sought to link the power situation in the country, especially in rural areas, with poverty alleviation and the need for nuclear energy.

Kalawati with seven daughters and two sons was left with a nine-acre plot of farmland, which she used for cultivating cotton and soybean, according to Gandhi.

As Vidarbha region has been in the grip of prolonged drought, Kalawati, like many others, did not find the output from her land enough to take care of her family.

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