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Pune man gives new home to girls orphaned by violence in J

By Pti

Pune, Feb 12 (PTI) An educational tour of Kashmir whilestudying politics for his graduation, spurred Adhik Kadam toundertake a project to rebuild the lives of the victims ofinsurgency and today Borderless World Foundation (BWF),formedby him to support the venture, has earned goodwill andgratitude in the trouble-torn valley.

Far away from the terror-struck border state, Kadam andnine of his college friends here, who used to play volleyballtogether, decided to work for the families shattered by theviolence in Jammu and Kashmir after Adhik returned from histour while studying article 370 of the constitution.

"I started going to Kashmir frequently from 1997 as Ifound the situation there so appalling. I interacted withvarious NGOs to know what kind of work I could initiate tooffer the much needed relief to children," said Adhik talkingto PTI.

Encouraged by his teachers at college in the endeavour---as he used to return to Pune only to appear for exams,spending months together in Jammu and Kashmir---- Adhikrecently formed BWF under whose auspices three well equippedhostels catering to the needs of 135 girls were set up atAnantnag, Kupwada and Badgaum.

"There are many organisations that are working foraffected boys in Kashmir but very few for girls. We decided tofill in this gap and took in girls falling in the age group of18 months to 20 years in the three hostels having a staff of35 to look after the orphans," said Bipin Takwale, a closeassociate of Adhik.

A group of 20 girl inmates of the BWF hostels in Kashmirarrived in the city Friday on a tour of Maharashtra duringwhich they would be interacting with various people andorganisations to find future openings in their professionalcareers after completing studies. .

Adhik and his colleagues had to face rough weather in the valley initially when they were confronted by terror groupsoperating in Kashmir.

"But it was our work that safeguarded us and todaywherever we go we enjoy trust and goodwill in the interior,"he said.

He quoted one extremist as saying "If we kill you, whatanswer can we give to Khuda (god)".

Explaining his motivation, Adhik said, "All of us in restof India are very safe and we can appreciate and understandthe sense of insecurity in Kashmir only when we come out ofour grooves."

"There was a time when my excursions and frequent visitsto Kashmir was seen by my people in Pune as madness. But nowparents are proud of me," said Adhik, recipient of an awardfor social justice instituted in memory of Mother Teresa.

However, the real recognition of his work would come, hesaid "when these Muslim and Hindu girls who are staying in theBWF hostels in Kashmir like one family, would enter their ownrightful homes after completing education and settling withjobs."

During the 15-day tour of Maharashtra, the girls fromKashmir will be visiting Mumbai, Alibaug and Baramati toexplore future career prospects.

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