Akshay Kapur is an electronics and communications engineer from Career Institute of Technology and Management, Harayana. He worked for a few years in a market research and consulting firm in the National Capital Territory, with his day-to-day work limited mostly to the analysis of data.
Akshay, now 23, says he grew tired of the needless chatter surrounding him from all directions. “Empty glasses and living room debates seemed to be the only tangible contribution of the majority of India’s intellectual elite.” People were constantly complaining about corruption, scams, poverty and the fact that government was doing nothing to help its own people. He realized this needless chatter did nothing to help alleviate the problem. He knew it was time for him to step up and do something.
He views his education as a tool of empowerment, a tool that helps create consciousness. “With great power comes great responsibility,” he says, quoting Uncle Ben from Spiderman. “Our education is that very tool of change.”
When asked whether he needed to mentally prepare himself for the one year commitment he was making to rural India, he was quick to reply that one year seemed far too little. “Things change over a long period of time. And it isn’t important to measure how much you changed the system. It is important not to let the system change you.” He also adds, “my nation is my people. India lives and breathes in each and every one of her billion people. We need to see our nation through the eyes of those people and no one else. Yet, they are the ones who seem to be suffering, caught between their past heritage and imposed modern systems and rejected by both.”
Akshay hopes to spend the next year understanding the field of sustainable development. In his very own words, he says, “I believe. I believe that something is possible. I believe that we have to take responsibility for change, no matter how small. Change starts at the grassroots.”