BENGALURU: Gitanjali Gupta is a one-woman mission. She partners with different NGOs in the city, for various causes, and currently is coordinating with Institute of Dying and Destitute in Yelahanka and Narayana Hrudayalaya to organise a free mobile heart check up for nearly 100 abandoned women on July 24.
“They may never have had a cardiac check-up done in their lives,” she says. Gitanjali lives with a heart condition and cannot walk for more than 18 minutes at a stretch. “During my check-up with Dr Devi Shetty, in Narayana Hrudayalaya, I brought the women and their condition to his attention. He committed to me right there. Emotional blackmail works,” she giggles.
“Their CSR head Dr Anupama has also been very supportive. I want the women to experience humanity and care before they pass on to the next world,” says Gitanjali. She recently organised a health camp for mentally challenged children at Nireekshana in Ejipura. “I approached Dr Arati Rao who works for Rainbow Children’s Hospital and also roped in Dr Rakshay for a camp at Nireekshana. It was a fantastic day.”
The 55-year-old Buddhist dedicates 10 to 12 hours every day for social service. With her heart condition, the doctor told her that she might not live much longer. “I wanted to make most of it,” she says, adding that she is currently managing 19 projects.
Gitanjali was once being treated in a hospital for a kidney ailment, when she received a call from Gopinath who runs Sparsha, an orphanage for children. “They were struggling for food and rations, and asked for help. I couldn’t do anything then. Two months later, when I recovered, I returned that call and have been helping him raise funds,” she says.
Gitanjali started her social service by working with Enfold India in 2012. She participated along with women from different countries in an awareness drive for child safety. She now heads the Collaborative Child Response Unit (CCRU) programme of Enfold India. She works for several causes including animal welfare.