Teaching was and is considered as one of the most noblest profession but now-a-days we have read and hear about corrupt professors who often disrespect their profession. But among all the negativity, there is a man who is changing the country by leaps and bounds.
We have read stories on how graduates from top universities have taken initiatives to support poor but not many go and live with them. Alok Sagar, an ex-IIT Delhi professor, left his lucrative job in 1982 to serve tribals, work for upliftment of women and stay connected to nature.
Besides having graduate and masters degrees from IIT Delhi, Sagar has a PhD from Houston University in Texas, US. He has infact taught former-RBI governor Raghuram Rajan.
But all these degrees were meaningless to him and he found his true calling in one of the remotest parts of Madhya Pradesh. For the past 26 years, Sagar has been living in Kochamu, MP’s Betul district.
For 32 long years, Sagar has been working in the Betul and Hoshangabad districts of Madhya Pradesh and helping save the environment. By now, he has planted more than 50,000 trees in Betul.
“In India, people are facing so many problems, but people are busy proving their intelligence by showing their degrees rather than serving people,” Alok told.
Living in Kochamu, a remote village with 750 tribals that lacks both electricity and roads, and just has one primary school, Sagar embraced this difficult journey without worrying a bit about the degrees he had to his credit, that could land him in comfortable and decent jobs.
Indeed, 64-year-old Sagar is a simple man. He would have continued to remain low key until he was forced to reveal his identity during Betul’s recent district elections. Some local authorities found him suspicious and asked him to leave the village. Alok went on to meet the police and revealed his qualifications. Till now, even the locals were unknown about his background.
Its been over 24 years that Alok has been trying to sensitise tribals to plant trees. He learnt the local dialect and adapted their lifestyle. He is a highly learned man who has command over seven-eight languages.
Sagar owns just three sets of kurtas and a cycle, and spends his day collecting and distributing seeds among tribals. Hefeels its only tribals that are truly connected with nature and respect it. He rides 60 kms to distribute seeds to neighbouring villages. And in association with the Shramik Adiwasi Sangathan, Sagar works for the welfare of tribals.
Sagar’s life sets an example that if you are willing to work for a cause, you do not need excuses.