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A layman's guide to bring about a difference in the world, by Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi

Nobel peace prize winner Kailash Satyarthi on Thursday said that the people who are busy in their lives and couldn't contribute much by taking part in social worker, can also make a difference in society. Things they must do is to make sure if the items they are purchasing from the market are not manufactured by child labours in anyways.

Madhu L Madhu L
New Delhi Updated on: February 15, 2020 21:27 IST

Nobel peace prize winner Kailash Satyarthi on Thursday said that people who are busy with their daily lives and couldn't contribute much by taking part in social work can also make a difference to the society. Speaking at International Conference on Perspectives on Peace and Sustainable Development in a world of Conflict at Vivekananda College in the National Capital, the Nobel laureate spelt out several ways in which one could affect things happening in everyday lives:

  • Make sure if the items they are purchasing from the market are not manufactured by child labour in any way whatsoever.
  • They ought not to take water or tea at the homes where they see any child servant serving or doing household work.

In 1994, Kailash Satyarthi took an initiative and convinced several nations including India to introduce 'Rugmark', used in rugs or carpets, to ensures that the carpet is not made by any child labour. Later, the name of the certification changed as 'Goodweave'. His initiative freed many children involved in the carpet industry primarily in areas like Palamu, Garhwa districts of Jharkhand.

The child rights activist had worked not only in India but in African countries, Pakistan, Nepal and various nations as well. He told the audience about how millions of children didn't even know how to fulfill their dreams. Satyarthi shared an incident where a 7-8-year-old girl, repairing a football in Pakistan's Sialkot, had only wished to kick it hard like the other kids when she was asked about her aspiration. He also told about the children working in cocoa beans plantation in Africa, didn't know what chocolate is.

Talking about the event, Kailash Satyarthi said that the topic of 'Peace and Sustainable Development in a world of Conflict' is the most timely and precise in the present world context. He talked in a length about sustainability and its significance in today's world. The 66-year-old activist said that sustainability has four legs -- people, planet, peace, and prosperity. We should not be a burden on mother nature. Paying it back is what we can do to save our lives. Kailash Satyarthi also said that the event is timely and appropriate in the present context of the world.

"Youth represents hope, solution, possibility and not trouble. They are not trouble makers but their young minds represent potential of the future," he said.

The simplicity and modesty mesmerized the auditorium filled with the students of Vivekananda College. When he has presented a folded shawl at the event, he unfolded it right there and took off his own muffler only to wrap the shawl around his shoulder. Then he asked the children, "Isn't this shawl better than the muffler which I was wearing?" After hearing a loud 'yes sir' from the audience, he smiled and said, "Ok then, I am wearing this now."

Kailash Satyarthi inspired the young students of Vivekananda College to take initiative for the change in society and told them how they can follow their hearts without thinking much about society. He also shared a story of how a bonded labour's daughter, named Saabo, was rescued by him and his team when she was sold for human trafficking in Punjab. It was the first incident of saving a girl from child slavery and trafficking by civilian action in history.

"There's a tiny hummingbird called compassion, inside everyone, I'm here to awaken it. God can't be so meagre to give you only a tiny drop of compassion. We have oceans inside us," said Satyarthi, who has indeed awakened and inspired many little 'hummingbirds' with his humble words.  

He concluded his speech with the line from a famous Hindi poem of Dushyant Kumar, "Mere seene mein nahi to tere seene mein sahi, ho kahin bhi aag, lekin aag jalni chahiye."

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