Dwarka: Tej Lal Bharti, an 87-year-old resident of Dwarka, has been practicing the Gandhian concept in life for a long time now. If you happen to visit in the morning in Sector 6 park near Sahara Apartments, you would see an old man in white Khadi Kurta and Pyjama, a white Gandhi Topi picking garbage in the park to make it clean. The same person could be seen watering plants or inspecting a tree in the area. He is a living practitioner of Gandhian concepts in life.
He lives in Sahara Apartments, Sector 6, all alone, doing all his work himself. He cooks, he washes his clothes and utensils, he cleans his house and does everything he needs to carry his life at this age on his own. He doesn’t take any help from anyone. Bharti says, “There is a Gandhi in you and you need to recognise and follow.”
Bharti loves nature. He says that like Gandhi, he feels cleanliness and environment are next to godliness. Since 2003, in Dwarka till now, he has planted about a thousand saplings which are now trees. Despite the fact that he has done such things, he is a silent worker and not a common face in the sub-city. He believes in selfless deeds for the nation and environment.
Bharti has contributed a lot for the society and the environment since his childhood, including a short glimpse of freedom fight as well. Originally from Punjab, Bharti is a Gandhian by nature and follows the path of Gandhi ji in his life which he adjudged the key to his success in life.
Bharti says that Gandhiism should be adopted by each individual in the nation for its growth. According to him, he has achieved everything only due to Gandhian principles. He believes that the nation is in dire need of a Gandhi at this stage. According to him, Gandhian philosophy is the only formula to bring togetherness in the communities and so to make the country powerful.
“Gandhi says to be united, irrespective of caste, creed and religion. He advises people to love and live with harmony. He believes in non-violence. If we all practice such things, then there will be only love and harmony and so would be collective effort for nation building,” says Bharti.
Bharti starts his day with cleaning his house and the neighbourhood park in front of his society. He spares his philosophy and gives him an example to show how relevant the philosophy is at this time. “When I can carry the principles of Gandhi practically in my life at 87 then why can not others do. Let’s try to discover Gandhi in ourselves,” says he.
Like Gandhi, Bharti is an early riser. Like Gandhi, he speaks truth. Like Gandhi, he follows simplicity and non-violence. How he started living Gandhi in himself, he shares, “I have not seen Gandhi ji but once while going to school, I heard that he was killed and I started crying. I thought that a person without any enemy was killed for what reason and how he could be killed. Not only this but also due to the effect of his personality on Indian society at that time, I too participated in Quit India Movement 1942 at the age of 10 years to demonstrate. Also I was beaten by the police and still there is a wound mark on my back.”
Having passion to serve poor kids and the underprivileged section of the society, Bharti also has been associated with several orphanages belonging to different communities and has adopted more than a thousand kids to provide help what he could. “I left my service 42 years back to dedicate my whole life to society, the environment and the nation. Though I had done LLB, I used it for my bread and butter and gave full time to society and the environment. Now my only desire is to serve till my last breath for the environment and the nation,” shares Bharti.
Mission plantation in Dwarka
After being shifted to Dwarka, Bharti has planted more than 1,000 trees and still he is on mission. He not only has planted saplings but he has been in nurturing them till their full growth and for that he starts his daily routine with a cutter and bucket of water early in the morning at 5.30 am and looks after the trees.
He shares, “I have had a passion for nature since my childhood. After shifting to Dwarka, I started planting saplings in the rainy season and it is still going on. In parks, on the side of the roads, you can see those seedlings grown as trees. It gives me satisfaction and throughout the year, I nurture those saplings which I plant in rainy season.”
Bharti has planted the trees of peepal, sheesham, jamun, shahtoot and neem. But he likes the tree of peepal most. On this, he says, “Peepal is a kind of tree which is grown in any condition. Just it need a bit care. Also the tree is very useful for environment and has medicinal value.”