A group of teenagers and youngsters (at school or at college) working in Dehradun and Jodhpur on environment, poverty and to increase civic consciousness.
How Mad was Formed
”While in my teens, I had the opportunity to watch a docu-feature on the Bhopal Gas Tragedy and I was very moved by that,” Abhijay said. “The heart-wrenching story of the victims of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy who still have not received their due compensation from the government compelled me to divert my attention from whatever I had at hand and focus on doing something for them,” he added.
However, Abhijay explained, that then, he was unaware of how the scenario of social service in India is. Abhijay was of the opinion that sending amenities and financial help to the Bhopal victims was the best way out. It was only later that he realised that he did not have a bank account and did not know anyone in Bhopal. This would mean that his entire effort would go in vain.
He said that although the project of helping the Bhopal Gas Tragedy victims was not fruitful, the urge to do something for the society kept haunting him and that was when the seeds for MAD were sown.
“I had also gone through that phase in my life when I had wanted to open an NGO and turn that into my profession. But later I took up law for my further studies, and my training in law proved to be very helpful while working with MAD,” he explained.
“Also, I realised that forming an NGO would mean that we would be channelising our resources towards one or two specific causes. But, somehow, I was not satisfied with focussing on just one single issue – I wanted to do as much as possible for Dehradun and did not want to restrict it to one cause,” Abhijay said.
MAD was formed in 2011 primarily as a Sunday-based activity platform which aimed at providing a platform for anyone, but mostly youngsters who would be free on Sundays and would be keen to work for the society.
On being asked how he was able to garner so much support in Dehradun, Abhijay said, “Well, frankly speaking, I am myself unaware of the process. I don’t know what to tell – today; we are many hundreds, mostly teenagers, imbued with the spirit of selfless service, determined to work towards making a difference by being the difference ourselves.”