|karma level Awesome|
|Savarkar's IIT-educated grandson found begging|
An enviable lineage and a degree from the prestigious IIT could not stop
Prafulla Chiplunkar, grandson of freedom fighter Vinayak Damodar Savarkar,
from leading a life of desolation and penury before ending up as a beggar
at Sarasbaugh here.
Fifty-seven-year-old Prafulla, an IIT, Delhi graduate in chemical engineering, who also happens to be the great grandson of freedom fighter and Marathi litterateur Vishnushastri Chiplunkar, fell on bad times in 1980s following an accident in the private company at Palampur where he was employed.
Having suffered severe burn injuries in the accident, subsequent hospitalisation took away his job and he was rendered penniless.
Married to a Thai girl and blessed with a son, bad financial condition after the accident forced jobless Prafulla to ask his family to shift to Thailand .
The news of his wife and son's death in a car accident in 2002 shattered him completely and the ensuing depression led him astray.
Cut off from relatives for marrying a Thai girl, Prafulla shied away from taking help from them though many of them are settled in the city. He began working as a watchman in a housing society and also took up other menial jobs for survival before taking recourse to begging two years ago.
However, his habit of reading English newspapers and magazines outside Sarasbaug, a popular garden, made passers-by and vendors curious. Certain that he was not an ordinary beggar, two vendors informed local media persons including veteran journalist Moreshwar Joshi.
"I verified his antecedents and when sure, informed local people who regarded Veer Savarkar as a great freedom fighter," Joshi said. Many people came forward to help Chiplunkar and he was taken by Sanjay Dhongade, a social worker, to his home on Saturday.
His friends are trying to find shelter for him, Joshi said, adding that after the news that Veer Savarkar's grandson was living on the streets hit the headlines, a woman from Delhi called up offering to look after him.
"The woman said she was employed as a maid in Chiplunkar's house decades ago. Now that he has fallen upon bad times, I am ready to discharge my responsibility as a daughter towards him. Today we are having everything going good for us and are in a position to take care of his needs," the woman told mediapersons here.
Chiplunkar told reporters that everything he had -- family, wealth and peace -- were taken away by the cruel hands of destiny, forcing him to live on the streets.
"I was avoiding my relatives because I did not want their social life to be disturbed because of me," he said.
Now Chiplunkar is keen to start his life afresh
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