Funding Friday: Humanity First

In the middle of this horrific crisis, I found inspiration in the efforts of Mohammed Shujatullah, a student of Sultan Ul Uloom College of Pharmacy in Hyderabad, who created the Humanity First Foundation. Mohammad serves free breakfast outside 3 government hospitals to the poor that are struggling to make ends meet.

How he started a life of giving is best explained in his own words:

It all started with a thankful “gesture to God” for passing an examination.

“I had a backlog in one of my papers. I had decided to feed ten hungry people if I successfully clear the backlog. It was my way of thanking Allah. I succeeded, and then I fulfilled my promise,” says Sujathullah. “But then, something happened,” he continues, “the experience of feeding the hungry changed me entirely. I felt at peace.”

March 22nd was his 1240th consecutive day of providing free breakfast outside Niloufer Hospital to 800 people every day. Then March 24th shutdown threatened to disrupt the noble and critical work that Mohammed undertook, but the Telangana police allowed him to serve 1000 people a day and continue his work.

Sandesha and I support a cause every Friday under our Funding Friday initiative. However, Mohammad’s selfless act made such a profound impact on her that it ignited the writer inside her. In a surprising turn of events, she wrote a beautiful piece:  Humanity First: Hyderabad Man Distributes Free Food Outside Hospital, which we proudly shared on the Artha India Venture’s blog yesterday.

Whether you decided to contribute to Mohammad’s campaign is truly up to you, but you must see the video below to sit in awe of the truly inspirational work this student is doing. Sandesha, myself, and several of our team members have already contributed to this initiative; you too can contribute at this link on Milaap.

Funding Friday – India’s Sons

Rape, whether done upon a woman or man, is a heinous crime. There is no doubt that the perpetrators of this ghastly act deserve the wrath of the legal, social, and economic systems. In the same spirit, falsely accusing another individual of a ghastly act such as rape is a crime that is as appalling, if not worse, than the act of rape itself.
Just think about the lives a false accusation destroys besides the credibility of the innocent.
The act destroys the families of the innocent, including women in the accused’s life, like his mother, wife, daughter, and sister. Even after the accused is proved innocent, his family continues to bear the ignominy of a crime that their son, brother, or father did not commit.
What makes the act of falsely accusing a man of rape sinister is that it affects the actual victims of rape when they approach the police and the judiciary. Judges and law enforcement are impartial but are (after all) humans too. When an accused is found playing truant with the law to meet with their malicious intentions, it casts doubts in genuine cases.
Therefore as a bad joke, the actual victim is subject to additional scrutiny due to the disgraceful actions of fake victims – subjecting the victimized to further victimization. This business of falsely accusing someone of settling scores or of extorting money must get highlighted, and the lawmakers get tasked with making provisions so that the false accusers get strictly punished.
I believe that any law should protect the innocent before it prosecutes the guilty; therefore I am backing eye-opening documentary by Deepika Bhardwaj, aptly named – India’s Sons. Deepika highlights the anguish of the victims of false rape accusations this ghastly act and how it is destroying the very fabric of Indian society. India’s Sons, is listed on Milaap.

I have backed Deepika in the past as she consistently highlights the anguish of the “forgotten gender” under India law with hard-hitting and compelling storytelling. Her last documentary, Martyrs of Marriage, went into gut wrenching detail on the misuse of Indian laws created to abolish dowry and prevent domestic violence by unscrupulous women. These women utilized these laws as tools of oppression against the husbands and their families. Martyrs of Marriage is available on Netflix.