In this world, there are many social workers. But has anyone of you ever seen a person who fights for the interest of torn down or rotten corpses? We get terrified by hearing word death, can you imagine someone working with death.
Yes, there is this angel! In the district Sindhudurg, India, Mangesh Paradekar, also known as “Dholebabu” by the locals.
He relentlessly fights for the rights of corpses and works hard for making them rest in peace. Unattended corpses from suicide, accidents, natural disasters or any other hazards awaits for this angel for giving them salvation. Several times, the corpses can be found in a rotten or torn down state which there relatives also don’t dare to touch or see but this person doesn’t turn his face away from them. In the world of afterlife he is an angel who battles for the salvation of the vulnerable remains.
Dholebabu has been working relentlessly since he was 18 years old, that too in complete atrocious conditions. Initially his family was against his work as they believe in good and bad spirits, and they felt that his life would be in danger if he continued this work. But he never cared for his own life. He believes that dead bodies are most vulnerable and rituals are vital to begin their afterlife journey and this belief keeps him going to carry out this selfless act despite of horrific sights of dead bodies where most of us don’t dare to visit or even see.
Dholebabu never got married because his elder brother died leaving his two kids. He takes care of his nephews, a mentally challenged younger brother and his sick parents Despite of fighting all these challenges and poverty, he is always eager to help people. He reaches to accident spots or at places where natural calamities occur.
If he comes across with dead bodies after accidents or drowned bodies, he stays with the bodies till their rituals are complete. Once in a dangerous flood of six days, he was fighting with tides to recover dead bodies. He was working to put souls in peace by putting his own life in danger. He also helps injured people by putting them in the hospitals. And donates blood. He volunteers to support mentally retired people. He has saved so many lives of drowning people.
He has been doing this selfless act for several years and completed the rituals for over 1000 dead bodies. He merely earns five thousand rupees (~70 USD) per month as he never asks for money.
While we living people fight with each other, someone in the corner of this earth is safeguarding the interest of dead! Let’s salute his courage and his murky yet nobble mission.
This story is supported by
Shaurin Sanjeev Desai
Sheth Mafatlal Gagalbhai high school, Devgad, India
6th Grade Student