It is more than often that we mourn about the pathetic conditions of the remote villages of different Indian states. But there exist a few people who do not waste their time in mourning and take actions immediately. Himanshu Patel is one of them. How he transformed a village, with no electricity and no water to an ultra modern small town, is an inspiration story on its own. The courageous narrative of Himanshu Patel is something everyone should be heard of. Let us have a look.
Early Life of Himanshu Patel
Himanshu Patel was born in a mediocre family in Gujarat. The Punsari Village of Gujarat is Mr. Patel’s hometown. Although he was born and brought up in this village, his parents immediately shifted to a nearby town as soon as he needed higher education and facilities. The difference between his village and another small town shook him to the core. He realized how Indians are still living on the edges of facility differences. From electricity to education, there are many remote villages in India that are lagging far behind from such facility and opportunity. Mr. Patel observed this situation and decided to take actions.
Transforming Punsari of Gujarat – the new Modern Village of India!
While most of the people rely on the government to take actions, Himanshu Patel did something extraordinary. He started studying about different governmental schemes that could be adopted to bring a change in the village. At the age of 17, he even offered his voluntary service for the betterment of the community too. But it was all in vain as nobody took this young boy’s motives seriously. Also, he did not have any important place in the authority which made his fighting for the betterment even harder. But Mr. Patel did not lose hope.
The Fighting Continues
And in the year of 2006, finally, Himanshu Patel figured it out how to handle all these hardships. As he could not bring changes without holding a responsible position in the administration system, he became the youngest Gram Sarpanch in Punsari Gram Panchayat election at the age of 22 only. But his fighting did not end with this. The Gram Panchayat of Punsari did not have any funds; rather it was due to a debt of 1.2 lakh. So, without implementing rigid development schemes, he first tried to be friendly with the villagers. He talked with them, asked them about their problems and built a place of mutual trust. He built a 60 members team that included Teachers, Health care workers, Anganwadi workers, etc. and questioned about every facility Punsari was lacking. He also kept applying for the government schemes too. And after two years of continuous efforts, everyone started to witness the amazing change. Electricity, street lights, water distribution system, concrete roads and individual toilets in every house – Punsari village of Gujarat witnessed such change it has not seen in decades.
When there is a will, there is a way!
Mr. Patel has installed 14 speakers around the whole village to announce new governmental schemes. Also, he sends birthday wishes and condolences to villagers through these speakers. To keep in touch, he has connected these speakers with his mobile phone as well. Apart from all these, Punsari is the first village in Gujarat to be facilitated with a high-speed WIFI connection. Every villager can avail the facility in exchange of 50rs a month. Also, Mr. Patel took steps in developing the drainage system of this village, and that made this village one of the cleanest village in the whole India. Not only that, but he also decreased the MMR and IMR rate to 0%. Also, no child in Punsari village is malnourished.
Now that Himanshu Patel has completed ten years of being the Sarpanch of Punsari village, he shared his biggest achievement to uplift all the BPL family to the boundary of APL family. And his achievement is not limited to Punsari only, but he is also giving training to more than 100 youngsters from different Indian states to bring such change to their villages as well. And in the journey of transforming Punsari of Gujarat, Himanshu Patel is taking a step forward to his next target– solar street lights!
Written By: Subharthi Bhattacharya