VIJAYAWADA: Post-retirement, 76-year-old Garikipati Donthuleswara Rao finds happiness in serving poor and needy of his native village Chinnapuram in Machilipatnam rural of Krishna district. His objective is to provide a platform for villagers and children to seek good education and lead a healthy life. In this regard, Rao has recently constructed a primary school and a hospital to provide the poor with minimum diagnostic facilities to treat eye problems. He is also known for rendering various charity activities for a decade through Vaidya Vidya Vignan Kendram, which he constructed in his village.
“I started by serving the differently-abled students at Hyderabad in 1970. Aiming to plunge headlong in such activities, I took voluntary retirement from HMT in 1994 and started helping the poor and needy in all possible ways. From 1996, I started work as a Chartered Engineer, Consultant and Government Valuer to banks,” he says.
The 76-year-old has recently constructed a primary school and hospital to treat eye problems of the poor. “Although I’m not greedy for public recognition,” Rao told TNIE, “People’s representatives and officials recognised my work and gave me necessary encouragement. To streamline the services, Rao founded the Smt and Sri Garikipati Donthulu Charitable Trust in June, 2011. Through this trust, Rao and his family conduct social service activities such as distributing books, sponsoring fee for meritorious students from economically backward sections and taking up cataract operations.
In 2015, his trust tied up with the LV Prasad Eye Hospital, Tadigadapa and performed many cataract operations in the village for the poor. Explaining the reason for constructing a primary school, Rao says education is not all about studying and getting good marks. A person becomes perfect only when he or she gains something from it and contributes to the country.
In 2018, he laid the foundation stone for the school, constructed at a cost of `3 crore, in Chinnapuram. “Transport Minister Perni Venkataramaiah Nani and Collector J Nivas inaugurated the school,” Rao says. The newly constructed Garikipati Lakshmi Narasiah Memorial Mandal Parishad Model Primary School was handed-over to the government for maintenance from this academic year. It can accommodate at least 400 students. In all, the school has 15 rooms, including laboratory and library.
Besides the philanthropist is laying focus on physical fitness. He aims to develop a playground to improve physical fitness of children of this generation. Asked whether he had taken any support for constructing the hospital and elementary school, Rao says, “My family members have always encouraged me.”
HELPING HAND FOR POOR AND NEEDY
Rao and his family conduct social service activities such as distributing books, sponsoring fee for meritorious students from economically backward sections. In 2015, the Smt and Sri Garikipati Donthulu Charitable Trust tied up with the LV Prasad Eye Hospital, Tadigadapa and performed many cataract operations for the poor in Chinnapuram village of Krishna district