Itanagar: In a noble gesture, Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has announced a donation of Rs 50 lakh from his personal account to the Deepak Nabam Living Home.
Situated at Senki View, Deepak Nabam Living Home (Halfway Home) is home to the mentally challenged, orphans, destitute, old-age people, and addicts. The institution is run by Deepak Nabam and his wife Protima Nabam without any assistance from the government or any organisation.
Khandu, who visited the Home on Tuesday recounted: “It was in January this year, my second son’s birthday. I asked one of my personal staff to look out for a destitute home or an orphanage in the state capital doing a commendable job and offer some amount for a grand meal to the inmates. He selected Deepak Nabam Living Home”.
The CM went on to disclose that his personal staff brought back few video clips from the institute and shared them with him. “What I saw shook my conscience. I never knew someone was doing such great service to humanity. I saw that there were many inmates but the living condition and the infrastructure were very poor. Literally, it broke my heart,” Khandu said.
He then enquired around and was shocked to know that the Home received no funds or assistance from any central or state government schemes. It was being solely run by Deepak Nabam from his own resources with some assistance from few well-wishers.
“I then decided to visit the Home. Our government is committed to the welfare of destitute, orphans, old-age people, and addicts equally just like other citizens,” Khandu revealed.
Going around the Home and interacting with the inmates, Khandu lauded Deepak, his wife, and the volunteers for their yeoman services. He though felt the urgency to improve the Home’s infrastructure with proper facilities. “Creating infrastructure is not a big deal for the government but what matters are upkeep, proper use, and sustenance of the created infrastructure,” he said.
Khandu also assured to fulfil all requirements of the Home like a common kitchen, male ward, flood protection, security fencing, drainage, etc and expressed confidence that these assets would be put to good use by Deepak Nabam.
He said many such NGOs are doing great service to humanity across the state, which needs handholding by the government. The CM said he would direct all deputy commissioners to submit the list of such NGOs in the ensuing e-Pragati meeting so that government can decide a mechanism to help them through the Department of Social Justice, Empowerment & Tribal Affairs.
He informed that the state government would offer grant-in-aid to such NGOs instead of the in-practice Corpus Fund. He claimed low-interest rates of Corpus Funds offered by banks hardly benefit the concerned NGO.
“Deepak Nabam is doing a great job but he alone cannot sustain. He has done to the limit of his personal resources. Now the government has to step in and all well-to-do citizens need to chip in. We throw huge amounts of money in politics; can’t we contribute a little to such NGOs?” Khandu wondered.
Established in 2015, the Deepak Nabam Living Home has so far provided shelter to 1,500 inmates over the years. Many recovered or found a home and left.
The Home is at present the only hope and shelter for around 160 inmates.