The NGO Uday Foundation and crowdfunding website Ketto that raised Rs 57 lakh after photograph of a boy grieving next to the body of a sanitation worker who died while cleaning a sewer has not released the money after coming to know that the grieving boy was not deceased’s son but his cousin.
A picture of the boy standing near the body of Anil had gone viral on the social media and moved people from across the country to donate money in a particular bank account.
Anil had lost his life on September 14 after he slipped when descending into the 20-feet deep sewer as the rope tied around his waist snapped and he went into a free.
On Thursday, Deendayal and Saroj, the parents of Anil, met Social Welfare Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam at his residence and said the woman who claimed to be Anil’s wife was actually his maternal aunt Rani. Anil’s mother showed a photograph of her with her sister to the Minister. The parents belong to Jhansi but have been living in Loni, Ghaziabad, for a while.
“Anil was never married. The woman is actually our Mausi and her husband lives in Mumbai. Anil had been living with her for close to three years. He was never married but used to treat her three children as his own,” said Geeta, the sister of Anil. Geeta said they are ready to share the money raised by the NGO with their Mausi.
The NGO had decided to release funds after verification was done. “We are deeply pained. Anil was taking care of the children as he used to live there. The children are in a vulnerable condition. We will take a collective decision on the funds raised through the social media campaign,” said Yashwant Deshmukh, one of the founding members of the foundation.
“Anil was living here for last few years and he had also installed “Sewer Ke Kaam- Anil” (Sewer worker Anil) in front of his house. We were not aware about that the woman Rani living with Anil is his mausi,” said a resident in Dabri, Dwarka. Soon after Anil’s death a photograph of a boy grieving next to Anil’s body had gone viral on social media following which a NGO decided to raise the money.
In the photograph shared widely by social media users, the boy, believed to be Anil’s son, was seen grieving next to his body. The photograph moved netizens and NGO Ketto and Uday Foundation launched a campaign to help Anil’s family.