Kailash Satyarthi – The Second Indian Nobel Laureate in Peace

From an Indian activist or social reformer to a Nobel Peace Prize winner. Kailash Satyarthi was born on January 11, 1954, in Vidisha, Madhya Pradesh, India. Educated from Barkatullah Vishwavidyalaya, Bhopal, Samrat Ashok Technological Institute.

Born in a Brahmin family and taught about the system of untouchability. His opposed mindset made him expelled from his community. Rather than being disappointed this was the beginning for him as by gave up his surname. To leave those restraints of the community behind and move on the path of great people such as Buddha and Mahatma Gandhi.

Kailash Sharma who later became the second Nobel Peace prize-winning Indian after Mother Teresa and the second Indian to be a Nobel Laureate in Peace for his reform. His dedication to protecting children from child labor in India and providing the universal right to education. 

Ordinary Life with extraordinary achievements

Currently working toward building a global movement for a response mechanism against digital and online forms of child sexual exploitation and abuse. The journey of Kailash Satyarthi is his first major achievement. In 1980 as the founder of Bachpan Bachao Andolan(Save Childhood Movement). Which has rescued over 90,000 children from slavery, trafficking, and forced labor in India. 

Kailash Satyarthi left his career as an electrical engineer around four decades ago and started Bachpan Bachao Andolan. Satyarthi is the first Indian born with the natural qualities of a Nobel Peace Laureate. Taking inspiration from Mahatma Gandhi, leaving his comfortable career as an engineer and choosing the peaceful movement. Against child trafficking and child labor in India, he continued to risk life and limb for his extended family. 

Struggles are always a part of great and memorable journeys. Here the fair share of that root goes back to his surname  “Satyarthi” (English: Seeker of Truth). He decided to part ways with his family surname “Sharma” which would have been useless to him. His community and family had decided to make him an outcast. 

Nobel Prize 

Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 by The Norwegian Nobel Committee. Kailash Satyarthi was the co-recipient of the Nobel Prize in 2014 with Malala Yousafzai. He became the 8th Indian to win a Nobel prize.

Born in a Brahmin family and taught about the system of untouchability, his opposed mindset made him expelled from his community. Rather than being disappointed this was the beginning for him. Gave up his surname to leave those restraints of the community behind and moved on the path of great people. As Buddha and Mahatma Gandhi.

This year’s Peace Prize is of special importance as Hindus and Muslims have the same struggle for the common welfare of the whole world. Through various forms of protests and demonstrations, all peaceful, focusing on the grave exploitation of children.

Kailash Satyarthi also faced extremes in his opposition to suppression. And for the rights of children to the extent where the volunteers of Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation’s sister organization. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Dhoom Das, were martyred after being attacked by a mob. To date, he is moving fearlessly being one of the loudest voices to ensure every child is safe, healthy, and educated.

Choosing the path of an activist 

Kailash Satyarthi mentions a saddening memory of encountering a cobbler’s son who could not attend school due to economic hardships. And due to the old ideology of a cobbler’s son being a cobber with society believing in untouchability.

Every person around him believes that the child has no right to choose. But to follow in his father’s footsteps in the form of slavery instead of freedom.

Kailash Satyarthi, unable to accept such a caste system, started to oppose such ideologies of old age. Started believing that every child should be treated with dignity, respect, and compassion.

After starting his career as an engineer he left that high-paying path and launched ‘Sangharsh Jaari Rahega’ to talk about the taboo considered issues of society. On the same path somewhere he came across the issue of bonded labor. Even the children of such laborers were sold by their employers to brothels. 

Kailash Satyarthi here did help those children and bonded laborers after many attempts to free them with help from like-minded people. This initial incident made him decide to follow the lifelong journey focusing on ending all forms of child exploitations.

Good Deeds of Peace Laureates

In 1980, he launched Bachpan Bachao Andolan (Save the Childhood Movement) to rescue children from slavery by using the legitimate law and policy framework of the Indian government. He plays a major role in the ensuring passage of the Child Labour Act of 1986.

Setting up rehabilitation centers for children, some popular ones are ‘Mukti Ashram’ at Delhi in 1991, and ‘Bal Ashram’ near Jaipur in 1998 as some of the modal institutes of child care in India. From India Kailash Satyarthi went to the global level to bring change in International Laws against the worst form of child labour by becoming the founder of the Global March Against Child Labour in 1998.

Kailash Satyarthi has made significant contributions at the international level to the development of important conventions on children’s rights. Mr. Kailash Satyarthi impacted this social evil of the issue of child labour on many platforms.

Achievements

In year 1999 Satyarthi also became one of the cofounders of the Global Campaign for Education, which championed education as a universal human right. In 2001 Kailash Satyarthi became a founding member of the UNESCO High-Level Group on Education for All.

He also addressed the United Nations General Assembly, UN Human Rights Commission,  International Labour Conference, UNESCO, and several Parliamentary Hearings. Also committees in the US, Germany, UK, Italy, Brazil, Panama, Nepal, Spain, Chile, and many more.

After being awarded with Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 the determination even went on to its fullest early.

In 2016 he engineered the first-ever moral platform – Laureates and Leaders Summit for Children, one of the powerful stages for children at the global level.

In 2017, Kailash Satyarthi lead a 12,000 km-long Bharat Yatra (from Kashmir to Kanyakumari) taking along with him survivors of child abuse, civil society organizations, politicians, bureaucrats, celebrities, and faith leaders to put the national spotlight on the pressing issue of child sexual abuse.

A look at Kailash Satyarthi today

The path of efforts and reform begin in his 20s to follow this path of greater good.

As of today in his 70’s Kailash Satyarthi is still working against child abuse in the modern world spread in online activities.

In his words, “It’s a journey we traversed from slavery to freedom”. His attitude toward the greater good made him a laureate while before that his recognition was not at that greater level even in his own country.

The same thing we can learn is to believe in the path of righteousness instead of only keeping higher expectations because if the path you choose is of truth, morals, and greater good then nothing will go unaccounted for.

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