Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Tuesday visited a private home for orphans, elderly, mentally ill and destitute people, and moved by the service it provides to the inmates, he announced a donation of Rs 50 lakh from his personal account.
Situated at Senki View area in Itanagar, the home is run by Deepak Nabam and his wife Protima from his own resources with some assistance from a few well-wishers.
Established in 2015, "Deepak Nabam Living Home" has so far provided shelter to 1,500 inmates over the years. Many recovered or found a place to live and left. But, for 160 inmates, it still is their only hope and shelter.
The chief minister said that many such organisations are doing great service to humanity across the state, which needs handholding by the government.
"Deepak Nabam is doing a great job but he alone cannot continue it. He has done what he could out of his personal resources. Now the government and all well-to-do citizens need to step in. We throw huge amounts of money in politics, can't we contribute a little to such NGOs?" Mr Khandu said.
Lauding Deepak Nabam, his wife and the volunteers for their yeoman service, he said that he will donate Rs 50 lakh from his personal account to the home.
After going around the home and interacting with the inmates, he said that its infrastructure needs to be improved and the government will take steps to construct, among others, a common kitchen, a male ward and security fencing.
Mr Khandu said that he came to know about "Deepak Nabam Living Home" while searching for a destitute home to offer a meal to its inmates on the occasion of the birthday of his son.
"It was in January this year, my second son's birthday. I asked one of my personal staff to look out for a destitute home or an orphanage in the state capital doing a commendable job and offer some amount for a grand meal to the inmates. He selected Deepak Nabam Living Home," Mr Khandu recounted.
He said the staff also showed him a few video clips of the home.
"I never knew someone is doing such a great service to humanity. I saw (in the video clips) that there are many inmates but the living condition and the infrastructure are very poor. Literally, it broke my heart," Mr Khandu added.
He then enquired around and was shocked to know that the home receives no funds or assistance from any central or state government scheme.
"I decided to visit the home. Our government is committed to the welfare of destitute, orphans, old-age people and addicts equally just like other citizens," Mr Khandu said.
He said that he would direct all deputy commissioners to submit the list of such NGOs so that government could formulate a mechanism to help them through the Department of Social Justice, Empowerment & Tribal Affairs.