Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Spark of Unbearable Compassion - On the life and work of a good friend of mine

"If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain."
-Emily Dickinson-

Well, the title of this post came from a report in "Shambala Sun" on my dear friend Sunitha Krishnan.

Thought i will do something that could further the cause of well-being of many we do not know. When we cannot reach out to many, I feel the best possible way to further that cause is to support the people who do it as their life’s principal mission.

One name came flashing to my mind when I came across this announcement on a sleepless night’s random googling – My dear good friend Dr. Sunitha Krishnan. She perhaps needs no introduction to many, there is so much written about her all over, her recent TED talk turned out to be a pathfinder talk. When thousands of suffering strangers need the help of people like Sunitha, She needs our help to reach out further and do more.

Well, I have been watching her rather closely over the years, as the organization grew, as she became increasingly popular …some times even as our communication became minimal, I really wondered …”did she get carried away “ , a doubt that lingered to my mind for quite some time till the day she was bestowed with the 2008 Real Heros Award by the CNN-IBN award presented by Nita Ambani . I switched on the TV, gathered people around me to show them Sunitha, and to my utter dismay I did not see Sunitha walking up to the dais to receive the award from Ms. Nita Ambani, instead I saw her father receiving the award. Quite startled and curious to know how could she miss out this opportunity to “be there” I called her up and came her reply “ I was in a meeting elsewhere, so could not go !” .

Some time later I came across this 7 page article in October 2008 issue of ‘Reader’s Digest’ that had her attitude further exemplified. She was invited by the South Korean Government to help them improve the shelters for victims of trafficking. Being a government guest, she was offered accommodation at the best place in South Korea….and she shocked the South Korean officials when she insisted that she wants to stay in a local brothel to study the situation closely. Well, here is the full story :

So while that defines her attitude to luxury and honours, I also realize that people like her cannot really shy away from awards and honours, more so when it brings in much needed funds and resources to keep the crusade running. I do realize the import of what Sunitha wrote in here , now I notice that the blog was posted by her at 3.02 AM ( an older one ) !

here is Sunitha's blog

Here is some Information on Sunitha :


Ink Talk Video

Sunitha's TED-India 2009 Talk – Video

Touching, saving 3200 lives and on and on

The Ugly Truth: Has A Disha (Hope)

The Sex Slave Rescuer- An Interview clip – Video

PBS Interview on Sunitha Krishnan-Video

Prajwala - New Rehabilitation Centre, Hyderabad

Print Media Reports:

The Spark of Unbearable Compassion: Sunitha Krishnan speaks at TEDIndia

Dr. Sunitha Krishnan Conferred with CNN IBN 'Real Heroes' Award

Keeping hope alive Real-life hero

Interpid Foe of India’s Sex Industry – 2008 Reader’s Digest Feature

She sets the bonded free

Anti-Trafficking Crusader Sunitha Krishnan Fights To Save Women & Girls In India

Sunitha Krishnan and Prajwala – Fighting for trafficked children

TED gain: $100,000 in 20 minutes, all for a cause

“The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference.”
- Elie Wiesel -

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