Death can be devastating for the ones who are left behind. Suraj was seven and his sister Saloni Banjara just two years old when their father, a truck driver, left them in 2007. According to the police, the brother witnessed the death of his mother who worked as a nurse. He saw a car, driven by whom he called ‘uncle’, repeatedly crushing her till she died. According to the Indian Express, these children, who are now 17 and 12 respectively, have since been living in a child care home in Kota.
On March 7, 2017, Suraj visited his mother’s home when the Kota child care committee took him to his village. This village, Sahrawada, is situated 60 km from Kota. When he reached there, he was in for a huge surprise as his mother had left Rs 96,500 in cash, stuffed in a pillow. However, soon, he realised that the money left by his mother was in old notes and therefore, held no value anymore.
The children reached out to the Reserve Bank of India. However, the RBI expressed its helplessness in exchanging such a huge amount in old notes. They decided to then write a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking his help.
According to the Indian Express, the letter they wrote to PM Modi said,
Please listen to our Mann ki Baat, Modiji. Humare aage peeche koi nahin (We don’t have any relatives)… our father left us when we were young and our mother was murdered. We want to deposit the money back with the government. Please help us at the earliest.
According to the Hindustan Times, Suraj said,
We had written an open letter to the Prime Minister in the hope that he would listen to our grievance. He has finally listened to us.
He further told the Hindustan Times,
The currency notes we found at our paternal house had turned into paper following demonetisation, but PM Modi’s assistance will help us in compensating the loss to some extent.
Harish Gurubakshani, Chairman of Kota Child Welfare Committee, has confirmed that the letter, dated June 6, from PM Modi has been received by the children. The sanctioned amount has also been transferred to the brother-sister duo's bank account in Kota.