INDIA. Tumsar, Maharashtra. A senior advocate by profession, Sudeep Saxena has improved the lives of local villagers. Born into a family of advocates and judges, Sudeep has used his privilege to support many people in the villages of Bapera and Tumsar in Central India. For his clients, he is a brilliant lawyer, but for those in the villages, he is an irreproachable person who can address many of their problems. Sudeep’s uncle, who became the chief justice of Patna and then governor of Bihar, was his inspiration.
A harbinger for the poor. While Sudeep was studying law, he found that his village was in dire need of a library. He founded the Swami Vivekananda library with his own money which has since benefited many students previously deprived of books. He distributes books to hundreds of underprivileged students of Bapera and nearby villages. He was so devoted to his villagers that he took an oath not to take a single penny from them for any of his judicial services. Many poor people are now benefiting from his pro bono services.
Restoration of a 400 year old temple. A very old temple of Lord Shiva was in a dilapidated condition. Sudeep was determined to restore the temple and to lift the spirit of his villagers. 1400 thousand Indian rupees were collected with the help of his family and friends. Now, this temple is the most visiting place by the devotees of surrounding villages. Talking to Transcontinental Times he said, “It was the task that I had always dreamt for“.
Social initiatives. To people more effectively, Sudeep joined the Lion’s club, through which he arranged free eye check-ups with licensed ophthalmologists. More than a thousand patients were examined and were given free spectacles. Free surgical operations were also provided. He became the founder and the president of the Junior Chambers International (JCI) in Tumsar, an organization that provides counselling for the poor.
He has touched the heart of many people who were down and hopeless. He believes that “giving happiness to the poor is real happiness”.
A Pioneer of Cricket Club. In 1990 during his playing days, Sudeep established the Gulshan Cricket Club. He even started the T-20 tournament years before it became a trend in international cricket. Gulshan Cricket Club then became the savior for many aspiring talents in cricket. He hired coaches from across the region to train young talents. As a result, a girl cricketer was selected for her state in the U-19 tournament arranged by the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) and two boys reached the final 20 lists of the U-19 state team. The club has now completed 30 years.
Visitor center in Chandpur Mandir. Sudeep became a trustee for this temple for Lord Hanuman in 2012. He helped build a larger infrastructure to support the daily visits to the temple located in the hilly areas of Chandpur (15 km from Tumsar). It is one of the most visited temples in the Bhandara district. Ex-Union Minister Praful Patel was also involved in this effort.
Helping migrant laborers return home during COVID-19 lockdown. One night in May 2020 he saw that more than 200 laborers were stranded on the road towards their home. He was astonished when he learned that they had completed almost 100km on foot. Noting their trouble and sorrows, Sudeep immediately arranged food and transportation. “The tears of their eyes spoke volumes for me,” Sudeep said.
The man himself is an example of kindness. Sudeep Saxena urges others: “Be kind to others, help others, and be satisfied by someone else’s smile”. He believes that “service to humanity is service to God”.