Pune woman sells gold bangles to build oxygen plant for soldiers at Siachen
Sumedha and her husband Yogesh have been working for soldiers' welfare since 1999
A school teacher and mother of a soldier was so inspired by the sacrifices made by the country's jawans, that she decided to make one of her own. Pune resident, Sumedha Chithade, 54, has sold her ancestral gold bangles to raise funds to build an oxygen plant for soldiers posted at Siachen Glacier.
At 20,000 feet, Siachen Glacier is the world's highest battlefield, and is also it's deadliest. Around 70 per cent of the deaths on both the Pakistani and Indian side are caused by the harsh terrain and climate, including the frigid temperatures and lack of oxygen.
Sumedha and her husband Yogesh have been working for soldiers' welfare since 1999. Two years ago, she formed the Soldier's Independent Rehabilitation Foundation (SIRF). On Saturday, she sold her bangles for Rs 1.25 lakh, with the goal of raising Rs 1.25 crore this year for the oxygen plant.
"I visited the border and saw the situation first-hand; it was difficult to see how the soldiers fight for our freedom but cannot even breathe feely. At present, at Siachen, oxygen is refilled from Chandigarh via Leh. I want to build a plant that can generate oxygen from air," said Sumedha, whose son is a Major in the Army. The Geography teacher added, "There are around 8,000 soldiers shielding such borders, I ca at least help a few."
Rs 1.25 lakh
Amount she raised by selling bangles