By Alok Ulfat
Dehradun, 31 Jul: Twelve children and four adults left from Nanhi Dunya School, Inder Road Branch, early Friday evening to meet Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami. The children were excited and curious. They had prepared an assortment of mantras and a Lychee song to present to their CM. They rushed to the fully packed reception of the office. The administrators were kind and made way for the otherly-abled children of Nanhi Dunya. After security checks, they were ushered into a big auditorium where many people were waiting. They too waited, softly discussing what etiquette was needed on such an occasion. They were requested to stay seated and speak only when the CM addressed them and not to touch his feet due to security reasons. The children were excited.
All of a sudden, the wait was over. The Chief Minster entered with his security and administrative staff. He meandered consciously through the rows of the auditorium, meeting everyone and listening to their plight. He was greeted with flowers and many smiles and some tears. Dressed elegantly, he was fully present, handling everyone with respect. By giving his valuable time and attention, he made a deep impact on the life of the Nanhi Dunya Community. CM Dhami is an active listener and effective communicator; a man with a vision and purpose.
After his rounds, he swiftly walked towards the Nanhi Dunya children. He was kind and considerate. I quickly introduced him to the children and Kiran Goyal, the Chief Promoter of Nanhi Dunya. He has a sharp memory and immediately recognised me. Satvika Goyal, the Chief Events Coordinator of Nanhi Dunya, presented him two marvellous pictures of the school children, wonderfully framed by Gunjan Sethi, a well-known freelance philanthropist. CM Dhami graciously unwrapped the images and appreciated the art. Satvika also invited him to Nanhi Dunya School for its Rainbow Platinum Jubilee events to be held in November 2022. To express gratitude for lychees sent for children from the CM’s residence, a picture was also presented for Geeta Pushkar Dhami, the CM’s wife. The children felt empowered and wished to meet him again, more personally. Hopefully soon.
On our way back, it started to pour heavily. After having hot patties on the way, we were soon in the school where their parents were keenly waiting. Now their children had met the person in charge of the Himalayas of Uttarakhand. The 11-year young boy, Yuvraj, was very impressed to see him and said, “I will grow up to be like Dhami ji.” 15-year Mehak felt, “Dhamiji is a very kind person.” Most children who went with us face physical and psychological challenges and come from economically deprived sections of the society. Sandhya, mother of 3-year’s young Vaishnavi, felt amazed to see her daughter with the CM. The parents of these children work at the grassroots level of society – gardeners, house/office helpers, social workers, delivery men, caretakers, daily wage workers, etc., all hard-working members of Uttarakhand. It is not so easy to reach the Chief Minister, but after meeting his Public Relations Officer Bhupendra Basera, everything went very smoothly. I found his team very cooperative. Meeting Chief Minister Dhami was a special part of the Nanhi Dunya Platinum Jubilee celebration.
Nanhi Dunya Community is now preparing for a mega event in November 2022. Nanhi Dunya the ‘International (Intercultural) Movement of Children and their Friends’, is a registered society run by its Board of Trustees. It is dedicated to the welfare and happiness of the children of the world and is well known in India and abroad. It is a community of dedicated teachers, co-workers, volunteers and over 1200 beneficiaries including children, youth, women and those with special needs, attending its 9 centres/schools in and around the Doon Valley. Nanhi Dunya gives special attention to economically deprived sections of society.