A heart-warming story of neighbourly kindness has emerged from Madhya Pradesh, where the wife of a soldier who died in a terrorist attack in December 1992 was yesterday gifted a 'pucca (concrete)' home, built with Rs 11 lakh raised by neighbours in just three months, after having been neglected by the government for nearly three decades.
Havaldar Mohan Singh Suner, a resident of Pir Pipliya village in Depalpur district, was one of three soldiers killed in an ambush near Dalpatipara in South Tripura district in the North East, leaving behind a wife, Raju Bai, and two children.
"Raju Bai tied Raksha sutras on our wrists on Raksha Bandhan in 2018. We pledged before her to end their woes by replacing the old hut with a new house. Subsequently, an initiative One Cheque One Sign for Shaheed Mission was started with the target of collecting Rs 11 lakh," Bhupendra Pancholi, one of the 20-odd young men in the village behind the initiative, said.
#WATCH Indore: Youth in Betma village presented new house y'day to wife of soldier Mohan Singh(who lost his life in 1992 in Assam).She had been living in 'kuccha' house till now. They also placed their hands on the ground in respect to help her enter the house for the first time pic.twitter.com/wp3mSM3lWZ— ANI (@ANI) August 16, 2019
Raju Bai and her children have lived in a ramshackle 'kutcha (mud) home for the past 27 years, surviving on a meagre government pension of Rs 700 per month.
Determined to help her, the group, led by Mohan Narayan, took matters into their hands. They started the campaign to raise funds and collected the funds. Eight months later, Raju Bai and her family had a new home.
The gifting of the house was an equally touching moment - on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan, Raju Bai walked into her new home on the hands of her new brothers.
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath said the villagers' actions were a "befitting tribute".
"I salute the inspirational work done on mission mode by youths of Peer Pipliya for the family of the martyr. It's befitting tribute to the martyr on Independence Day-Raksha Bandhan," he said.
The villagers also have plans to install a statue of Mohan Singh Suner on the main road of the village. They have also petitioned local administration officials to rename the government school, at which they studied, after the hero solider.