This Article is From May 01, 2015

Sachin Tendulkar Uses MP Funds to Improve Tribal Lives at Aarey

Sachin Tendulkar Uses MP Funds to Improve Tribal Lives at Aarey

Work has already begun, and on Thursday, mid-day found that the toilet in Vanichapada was almost complete. Each toilet is being built at a cost of Rs 9.9 lakh.

Mumbai: As a Rajya Sabha member, Sachin Tendulkar has come under fire several times over the years for failing to carry out development work, so this year, the celebrated cricketer and MP has decided to answer his detractors not with words but action.

It is an added advantage that he has turned his attention to tribal hamlets in Aarey Milk Colony, which have long been neglected by the authorities. Tendulkar is now using his MP Local Area Development (MPLAD) funds to construct six public toilets, as well as footpaths inside these adivasi padas.

In addition, he has also distributed 500 solar lamps among the adivasi community. This is a godsend for the tribal residents, some of whom have lived there for over a century but still lack basic facilities like electricity and toilets. Aarey is notorious for man-leopard conflict, and the lack of toilets forces many locals to answer nature's in the open, where they are more vulnerable to leopard attacks.

"Most of us risk our lives each time we answer nature's call, as this is how many human-leopard conflicts have happened. We are happy that at least MP Sachin Tendulkar is using his funds to construct good quality toilets," said Chandu Jadhav, a resident of Vanichapada.

Quality work

Tendulkar has commissioned the construction of six public toilets (each will have four booths inside) at Vanichapada, Mataipada, Khambyachapada, Gavdevipada, Gitunichapa-da and Futkyatalavachapada. Work has already begun; on Thursday, mid-day found that construction of the toilet at Vanichapada is almost complete, and only the final touches remained.

The entire project is expected to be complete by monsoon. Locals are thrilled with the quality of the construction as well, and say that it is far superior to the toilets built by MHADA-SRA. These older toilets were roofed with asbestos sheets that often crumbled in the monsoon, whereas the new toilets have solid concrete slabs overhead.

In addition, the new toilets have better tiles within and even have running water connections (from a tank housed at the back), which the MHADA-SRA toilets lack."We are not saying that our local public representatives did no development work, but a lot more needs to be done.

We are really happy that Sachin Tendulkar at least thought of providing good infrastructure at the adivas padas like public toilets, internal concrete footpaths and solar lights," said Kisan Baliram Yerekar, an Aarey resident for the past 40 years.