Kalaburgi: Clad in his characteristic white jubba and pyjama , he is a familiar figure visiting school and colleges , fields and farmhouses, inspiring people from all walks of life to become vehicles of change. At 71, senior BJP leader, Basavaraj Patil Sedam remains a man with a mission.
Unlike most politicians, this Rajya Sabha member hardly indulges in politicking, and devotes most of his time and energy to encouraging the people of the backward Hyderabad Karnatak region to dream big.
Although he has been member of the 12th Lok Sabha and president of the BJP in the state in the past, today he remains aloof from Vidhana Soudha and even his own party not bothering to take part in any of its programmes while it was in power in the state from 2008 to 2013.
So inspired was he by famous ideologue, K N Govindacharya 's novel concept of “My Village, My World,” that he took it to heart and began to work on these lines himself.
In 1974 he founded the Kottala Basaveshwara Bharateeya Education Society in Sedam, one of the most backward towns in the region. Beginning from a single room school it now educates over 8,000 students.
And to cure the people of the “backwardness” tag he set up a Hyderabad-Karnataka Development Cell and in 2008 organized a mega event under the banner of Jaagrituhi Jaatha in Sedam town, inviting many eminent persons from the region such as former Supreme Court judge, Shivaraj Patil, IPS officer, Raghavendra Auradkar, famed cardiac surgeon, Vivek Jawali, and agriculture scientist, Dr S A Patil to drive home the point that anything is possible if only one tries hard enough.
He followed it up with the 10-day Kalaburgi Kampu to dissuade people from only aiming for government jobs and show them how they could become self-reliant.
His mantra then and always has been,“Naukari Maado Kaigaligintha, Naukari Needo Kaigalu Shreshtha. Swavalambi Baduku Ananya Saarthakathe Vadagisuthade (Giving jobs is holier than doing a job. A self reliant- life provides immeasurable satisfaction).
His Vikas Academy hopes to now train five lakh youth in vocational skills over the next 10 years so they don’t leave t heir villages for cities in search of jobs and he also plans to establish a 1000 training centres in tailoring targeting women.
“I believe that these changes can be brought about only through community participation. I’m asking the people to work two hours extra, make a 20 per cent saving by cutting down their expenditure and donate two per cent of their earnings to the development of the region.
With the right blend of knowledge, perseverance and donations, I can achieve the dreams I have set for Hyderabad Karnataka ,” he says, seeing his age as no barrier to his long term ambitions...