Monday, August 04, 2008

as india proceeds at break neck speed to make the rich more richer, the upper middle class more upper, the politicians more powerful and the business more fortune 500 oriented, one of the crucial segments of our population, the marginalized tribal communities have been left to fend for themselves.

in health, in education, in their human rights, in their livelihood, they have stayed and continue to stay in the fringes of india.

and in working with that borderline people, dr.prakash and mandakini amte has done what ideally should be the bread and butter of any government. that is to serve the weaker sections of the society.

dr.prakash and mandakini amte has won the prestigious magsaysay award for 2008.

from the hindu report, it is amazing to see the gamut of work done by this doctor team. indeed let their tribe grow more stronger.

Prakash and Mandakini Amte, a husband-and-wife team of doctors, were cited for community leadership for enhancing the ability of the Madia Gonds tribe in eastern Maharashtra to adapt to modern society through their healing and teaching work.

They abandoned their urban practices in 1974 when Dr. Prakash’s father, Gandhian-humanitarian Baba Amte, called him to take over a new project among the Madia Gonds, who lived on hunting, gathering and shifting cultivation. The couple moved to the remote Hemalkasa region and lived simply among the tribesmen, learned their language and patiently gained their trust.

The couple’s 50-bed hospital and five doctors treat 40,000 patients a year for free. Their school introduced the tribe to settled agriculture — growing vegetables, fruits and irrigated grains organically — and encouraged conservation and protection of forests and wild animals.


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