Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Ganatra awaits his biopic, hopes to survive financially finally

Sudeep Pakrashi

Bipin Ganatra can finally come out of his financial predicament at the dusk of his life once his biopic gets released. Otherwise, the 66-year-old man is already famous for his outstanding contribution to society. Ganatra has been offering this service for the last four decades at a huge risk to life. As its reward, Ganatra has received laurels a galore including the Padma Sree in 2017 and the 'bravery and honesty' award from Kolkata Police. 

The Fire fighting

Bipin Ganatra is a volunteer firefighter who does not have formal training. Only out of passion and incredible determination Ganatra has been driving himself into the buildings that have caught fire and helping the official firefighters of the Fire Brigade to rescue the people trapped there. Ganatra's habit of doing social work began in his childhood. He always went to Calcutta Medical College, sitting there in the emergency ward, offering any kind of help to any patient before doctors came and started their treatment. But his passion for fire-chasing developed following his elder brother's death in a fire trap. Ganatra was only 15 years old at that time.

Whenever Ganatra sees any fire engine on the road or whenever he watches any fire incident on television, he immediately rushes and begins helping the Fire Brigade firefighters. Ganatra who has attended more than 150 fires so far, still remembers the fires at AMRI hospital, at Stephen's Court, Park Street, and obviously, the massive fire at the building in Burrabazar, Strand Road where Ganatra himself was trapped in the fire, jeopardized after watching slabs cracking and falling downwards. Ganatra was finally rescued by the firefighters of the fire brigade and admitted to the hospital also. 

The Fight for Survival

Still, his financial struggle for survival has not stopped. Sitting in his room where he was born, opposite Calcutta Medical College and where the room space is not more than 10-square feet Ganatra revealed "I am blessed with friends. They fulfill my requirement. I do have not any earnings. I just manage five-six thousand rupees every month and manage to lead my life. I have an advantage that I am alone." Simultaneously, he expressed regret also stating, "The left-front government gave me a gold medal. The present government offered me a job of home guard job. I refused it. In the last 40 years, I have received only three thousand rupees along with the gold medal from the left-front government only once in 1995. I was handed the kit of a firefighter at that time by the top brass of the fire brigade. But today as I am becoming older I feel I need some financial security. Didn't I deserve some kind of financial reward for what I have done? " 

The Ray of Hope Finally

One of the country's big corporate houses has already made a documentary on Bipin Ganatra's service. Ganatra said, "I have not yet seen the documentary but the director who made the documentary has decided to make a biopic on my life. I hope I will get some money finally after the film is released." 

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