Lucknow, Nov 21 (UNI) Sixteen-year-old Subhash Kumar is the lone candidate from Uttar Pradesh who has been chosen for the National Bravery Awards,2007, to be presented by President Pratibha Patil on the next Republic Day function.
Subhash, the elder son of a poor family in Niwajpurwa village on the outskirts of the state capital, is among 22 children selected from across the country for the award.
The teenager is being awarded for saving the lives of four children, including a handicapped girl, from a fire that broke out in his village on April 4. In the incident, Subhash not only saved the children trapped in a hut, but also the cattle kept nearby. Subhash's two brothers and Pritam (3), a polio patient, were among the trapped children.
On the fateful day, around 1500 hrs when various huts suddenly caught fire in Niwajpurva village, the four kids locked themselves inside a hut out of fear. Subhash jumped inside the hut to save them.
In the attempt, he received minor burns in his arms and legs.
Subhash narrating about the incident said ''it was an spontaneous reaction and many people told me to wait till the fire vehicle arrived. But how could I wait when kids who called me bhaiya were caught in fire.'' Fire tenders came around half-an-hour later and if people had waited then these kids would have received serious burns by that time, he said,. He also saved the life of a drowning cattle, a month ago and is now looked up by the entire village as a hero.
Subhash's mother is proud that her eldest son is a hero for the entire village. But at the same time, she is worried about the fact that now he is called in to help out in almost every problem faced by the village.
When Subhash was asked how he was feeling for receiving the gallantry award, he said he is more interested in getting a chance to sit on elephant and wave hands to the crowd like a celebrity.