The Story of Raja Ram Tiwari: A Man Who Reunited Lost Pilgrims
Kalinga TV News Network
By- Md. Mojahid Raza
A man’s true nature is known by his deeds. Long after we leave this world, nobody will talk about the amount of riches we had but they will definitely talk about the number of smiles we were able to spread in our lifetimes.
Humanism is the greatest of all feelings and humanity the biggest of all religion. And nobody epitomises this better than Raja Ram Tiwari, the man who had played a pivotal role in reuniting thousands of pilgrims accidently separated during the Allahabad Kumbh Mela.
Dearly called ‘Bhule Bhatke waalon ka Baba’, Raja Ram Tiwari passed away on August 20, 2016 at the ripe age of 88. He might be no more but his life is a towering example of compassion, kindness and humanity, which will serve as an inspiration for generations to come.
Coming from a humble background, Tiwari was 18 when he had first visited Kumbh Mela at the Sangam ghats of Allahabad, at the conflux of the two great rivers, Ganga and Yamuna. In the congregation, he came across a woman who was crying inconsolably. After inquiring, she revealed that she had been separated from her family after getting lost in the crowd. Hearing this, Tiwari immediately sprang up and went to a nearby loudspeaker where he announced the woman’s name and called out to her relatives. In no time, the message was heard by her family and she was reunited.
Since then, there was no looking back for him. Tiwari went on to establish camps called ‘Khoya Paya Shivir’ to help lost pilgrims find their way and reunite them with their families.
He dedicated 71 precious years of his life in this endeavour. Initially, he worked all alone but was soon joined by volunteers who came to help after learning about the great cause he was working for. Over the years, the camp has reunited over 14 lakh adults and around 21,000 children with their families since inception. While some were reunited in a few hours or days, some took months to find their loved ones.
Raja Ram Tiwari’s selfless efforts soon got him noticed. Many national and international dailies carried his story. Besides reuniting lost ones, Tiwari was also associated with many ventures related to cleaning of river Ganga. Despite old age and infirmity, he did not deter from undertaking cleanliness drives and campaigns to clean river Ganga in order to maintain its divinity and sanctity.
The earthly journey of Raja Ram Tiwari might have ended but he will always remain alive in the hearts of the millions, who were reunited with their families due to his efforts. Tiwari is survived by his four sons who have taken over his legacy and now manage the ‘Khoya Paya Shivir’. His wife Shanti Devi(85) as well as the people of Allahabad remember him as a selfless and compassionate soul who served humanity all his life.