TIRUPATI: This auto rickshaw driver in Tirupati is not just a nature-lover but an environmentalist as well. Kompala Babu is a 58-year-old resident of Kesineni Gunta in Tirupati city. His auto is a reflection of the love and concern he has for the environment. Babu has kept plant saplings in his auto, in order to promote greenery and create awareness about conserving the environment.
Kompala Babu used to be a dealer and supplier of milk products to retailers in the city. But in 2011, he was diagnosed with brain tumour. Babu’s family spent over `11 lakh for his treatment. They were also forced to sell their house in order to bear the expenses. After recovering, Babu took up menial jobs to support his family. He started driving an auto and in 2019, he set up the saplings in the vehicle.
“My auto is appealing to the eye of each and every passenger. They say it feels like sitting in a garden, whenever they board my auto. After looking at my auto, passengers realise the importance to conserving the environment. I also strongly believe that nature can protect us from several health issues that we face today,” 58-year-old Babu said.
Babu also told TNIE that passengers contact him to rent his auto. He added that almost 300 customers have approached him repeatedly for his services because they trust him for the best service he provides.
The 58-year old has a small nursery at his home and he also gives saplings, free of cost, to people who contact him. Officials of Tirupati Municipal Corporation have been offering him free urea to help him take care of his saplings. “Even at the age of 58, the auto rickshaw driver has been working towards the conservation of the environment. Everyone should support him and plant saplings,” said S Narayana, a resident.