In India, we are accustomed to see police with insensitive behavior, harsh attitude, punitive actions, and aggressive nature. There is a sense of fear that always looms over people during an e encounter with a police personnel. Although the system is always looking forward to serving the public, for some reasons, people see them from a negative perspective.
Fortunately, there are still some policemen who want to break this concept, and create a different image and character by incessantly collaborating with the social workers to bring about positive change and social development. IPS Officer Nishant Kumar Tiwari, SP of Purnea district, Bihar is one of those faces.
SP Tiwari takes pride in going from one village to another and tries to spread the light of education among them. He explained the importance of educating children to their parents. Now, they are sending their children to schools and overall the entire police department is getting popular because of Meri Pathshala campaign.
Common people are now interacting with the police system in a better way that in turn is helping to build a healthier relation between them. SP Tiwari, known as the Captain Sahib among the villagers, himself take time out from their tough duty hours and go to remote villages to educate the children as well as illiterate adults. They continuously inspire everybody to study hard and become educated.
Tiwari is a 2005 batch IPS officer who has been transferred to seven places in the last 11 years. At every place of his posting he has worked as a social worker apart from being a dutiful police officer. He has done a lot of work for the poor, the youth, and the uneducated. He also distributed free spectacles among poor, elderly people, organized sports events for the youth, and distributed blankets between the poor. He also made an important contribution in the field of education, but never wanted his name to be highlighted.
In 2016, he was transferred to Purnea, a remote district 350 km away from the Patna, which sees frequent floods, and one of the lowest literacy rate in the country. He took the initiative of Meri Pathshala to bring awareness about education among the locals. It is worth mentioning that in people from Purnea come to work in the makhana and jute industry as laborers. New workers come in every six-seven months and bring their children along with them. As a result, their schooling gets discontinued and most of the time it is never resumed.
Before becoming an IPS Officer, Nishant worked in the US for four years as a software engineer. After seeing the massive contrast in literacy rate and development between the two countries, he decided to return to India and make the common, illiterate people aware of education. He started this campaign Meri Pathshala from the Chanka village of Srinagar and Champaran, Purnea.
Currently, his initiative is operational in five villages namely Harda, Bilouri, Baciasi, Chanka, and Srinagar. The inhabitants of these villages are mostly tribals and dalits. The school usually opens for one hour in every Sunday. It has a blackboard, water filter, books, and exercise copies. Reading material and sports equipment are distributed among the students from time to time.
Along with SP Tiwari, the whole Purnea Police Department, the educated youth of the surrounding area, and the senior citizens got involved in this initiative and offering every possible help. Ian Wolfford, professor of Hindi at La Trobe University, Australia, who is at present doing a research on Phanishwar Nath ‘Renu’, also joined this initiative of Tiwari and tweeted about Meri Pathshala.
Till date, over 1,000 children have enrolled in the local government schools through the campaign. Nishant feels that if people start working towards educating the illiterates from their heart, then the day is not far when everybody in our country will be educated. Nishant’s efforts have also increased the confidence of locals about the whole police department and has improved their image considerably.
A successful person wants everyone to succeed. SP Nishant Tiwari, who once had a successful white collar job in the US, has come back to India to work at the grassroots level to increase the literacy rate of our country and improve people’s quality of life. If the educated classes of our country take similar resolutions and take such social initiatives, then India will soon become a developed nation.