Town Hall with Nobel Laureate Mr. Kailash Satyarthi


Nivah, the Social Sector Attachment Committee of Department of Management Studies, IIT Delhi & NSS IIT Delhi collaboratively organized an auspicious event “Town Hall with Nobel Laureate Mr. Kailash Satyarthi”. The event kick started with the traditional lightening of the lamp by the dignitaries present i.e. Mr. Kailash Satyarthi himself; Mr. Asoke Gupta, Dy. Director of IIT Delhi; Mr. M.P. Gupta, HOD of Dept. of Management Studies, IIT Delhi; Mr. Anil Bhavnani, Director BPO-India Site Leader at Pfizer and Mr. Puneesh Lamba, Group CIO, C K Birla Group. Mr. Asoke Gupta extended his earnest heartiest welcome to Mr. Satyarthi on behalf of the entire IIT fraternity and through his inspiring speech, he urged the students present in the audience to involve themselves in social work, in the fight to change the lives of deprived people of India.Next, the most desired event of the evening took place – Inaugural of the Official Brochure of NIVAH (consisting of the mission, vision, past works & the future plans by the students of Dept. of Management Studies in the arena of the social welfare). This event was followed by two short videos elucidating & enlightening on the works of NSS IIT Delhi and Mr. Satyarthi in the arena of transforming lives of Indian mass.

Then, the Honorable guest of the session, Mr. Satyarthi came forward to address the audience. At first, he connected with the audience warmly by stating the fact he also belongs the engineer community –the “I am one of You” prominently reflected that. He shared some humorous incidents from his own college life and after that straightly dived into sharing his inspirations, experiences &viewpoints on the main objective of his life – “Abolition of Child Slavery & promotion of Social Welfare”.He started with an incident of his contemplation when he saw a little cobbler child outside his school on the first day of his school. His innocent & inquisitive mind could not resist the temptation to ask the teacher (supposed to be the social source of wisdom) about the disparity in social status & consequent deprivation prevailing in the society but did not become satisfied with the answer. Anger started to grow inside his soul; it seemed to him that the whole society is denying to give him the proper answers as if the society was just acting blind instead of watching harsh truths. And that’s how his journey began – to find the answers of his questions.

In this context, he emphasized on the aspect of having courage to ask questions & even emphasized more to have the commitment to find the answer - and that’s how one can start to make a safer, a sustainable world. The viewpoint of not maintaining status quo, not going for readymade answers found google was promptly portrayed. Thereafter, he cited some of the inspiring deeds & at the same time some dangerous rescue operations that he executed e.g. He immensely tried to engage with the audience by providing them grotesque images of harsh, cruel humanity like 12 yr. old being killed in Syria because she was not able to satisfy her customers, boys of similar age being given guns to fulfill targets of killing; so that the inner anger comes out the young minds present and they throw themselves into the fire of this great war against child abuse. He validated his data (168 million children employed in fulltime jobs globally where as 210 million adults are jobless; 260 million children were never been able to go to school whereas 200 million were forced to leave school) and urged the audience to ponder over “Is it something that you think can go forever? Does not this make you angry?”. He also projected that how his benevolent operations decreased the amount of child labor from approx. 260 million to 160 million.

Crying about problems was not an option for Mr. Satyarthi, by the act of dedication & execution he was able to make education as a constitutional right in India (a country which for years had been denying even the presence of child slaves) through the 2001 amendment. “Freedom to think, Freedom to obtain education” – this was the motto, he was trying to incorporate into the psyche of the young audience. He continuously inspired the audience with his words like “Find the strength inside, raise your voice and I hope that the fire inside you will be ignited for the betterment of humankind.” He urged the young audience to leverage the power of social media (which also itself is the dearest thing of these millennial personas).In conclusion, he put a framework of aspiration in front of the budding minds – 3 D’s:
  • D – Dream Big : Dream Big
  • D – Discover : Discover the power inside you & leverage each of the opportunities available
  • D – Do : Once you have dreamt, Act Now
Further, he inspired the present audience by recognizing each of them as the heroes of future India & filled them with light of passion, enthusiasm & optimism by saying “Together, we all can make India great.”

After that overwhelming speech, there was a Q&A session with Mr. Satyarthi (organized in association with Facebook); Questions were thrown to him regarding his own inspiration, his way of working & most importantly what has been the fuel that is keeping him to go on till now. He mostly emphasized on the aspect of anger (born out of the blind malpractices prevailing in the societies) which acted as a fuel in his passion of fire to uplift the society & more importantly provide justice to the suffering & underprivileged children of Indian society. He also shared various rescue incidents e.g. the case of the girl of ‘Shabo’ which provided him the utter motivation to go on. He was also asked about the generation of new ideas and leveraging social media in this era of digital to enhance his work. In this context, he promoted his upcoming ‘100 million for 100 million’ campaign and elaborated on how the power of youth can be utilized to achieve the ultimate aim of social equity.

Thereafter, the forum was made open for the audience present to interact with Mr. Satyarthi directly through another Q&A session. Students showed their inquisitiveness and asked about diverse topics like pragmatic steps to stop child beggary & also to promote child education, how to develop one’s persona to excel in this particular sphere of social passion and even topic like what aspect/incident would Mr. Satyarthi like to change in his enormous & exciting journey of lifetime. Mr. Satyarthi drenched the queries of the audience with the sangria of his visionary & witty inputs on those topics.

Mr. Satyarthi also elaborated on his upcoming ‘Laureates & Leaders’ Summit 2016’ which is going to take place in Dec’16 which will add another landmark to the dedicated endeavors of Mr. Satyarthi in the arena of social welfare. This event is supposed to be supported by 34 Nobel Laureates and also supposed to come out as a bigger platform for enriching moral power of society to help underprivileged children of the society, as per Mr. Satyarthi’s words.

Thus, this enrapturing session came to closure but the impact was everlasting; Mr. Satyarthi captured a huge portion of the mind share of the audience present & engulfed their minds with pure enthusiasm, passion & motivation to do some effective work in the arena of social welfare. The aims of the young students got broader after this session – one more item i.e. ‘Transforming the lives of lagging people in India’ was added to the bucket list of the budding engineers & managers or rather say the soldiers of the army of social welfare.