Fluorosis activist Amshala Swamy dies after a fall in Telangana

Jan 28, 2023 11:58 PM IST

Telangana Fluorosis Vimochana Samithi convener Subhash Kanchukatla said Swamy had a fall from his battery-operated wheelchair while climbing up the ramp of his double bedroom house on Friday evening.

Hyderabad Popular fluorosis-affected social activist Amshala Swamy (37), who fought for the eradication of the debilitating disease in Telangana’s Nalgonda district, died at his residence at Shivannagudem village of Marrigudem block on Saturday morning.

Amshala Swamy fought for the eradication of the debilitating disease in Telangana’s Nalgonda district
Amshala Swamy fought for the eradication of the debilitating disease in Telangana’s Nalgonda district

Telangana Fluorosis Vimochana Samithi convener Subhash Kanchukatla said Swamy had a fall from his battery-operated wheelchair while climbing up the ramp of his double bedroom house on Friday evening.

“He was alright till Saturday morning, he suffered blood vomiting and collapsed at around 8.30 am. We rushed him to the local hospital, where he was declared brought dead,” Kanchukatla said.

Swamy, who was born with skeletal fluorosis disease resulting in a shrunken body and curved limbs because of the presence of high fluoride content in the drinking water in his village, had been in the forefront of the protests of Nalgonda Jala Sadhana Samithi, an NGO fighting for safe drinking water to the people in the district.

He shot into national headlines in 2002, when the representatives of Jala Sadhana Samithi took him to Delhi and placed him on the table before then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to highlight the severity of the issue. The photograph of Swamy was prominently highlighted by the national media.

Swamy was also part of several delegations of fluorosis victims who met several chief ministers to represent the plight of fluorosis victims in the district. “Because of the agitations waged by Swamy and others, the Telangana government took steps to bring safe drinking water to the doorsteps of every fluoride-affected village in the district,” Kanchukatla said.

Swamy, who was unmarried, was eking out a livelihood by running a telephone booth in the village. Last year, the Telangana government got him a double bedroom house and granted financial assistance to run a salon in front of his house.

In October 2022, while going to Munugode to take part in the by-election campaign, Telangana industries and IT minister K T Rama Rao visited Swamy’s house and had lunch with him.

Sharing the picture on Twitter on Saturday, KTR condoled the death of Swamy who, he said, was a fighter who championed the cause of fluorosis victims.

“My Heartfelt condolences to the family of Sri Amshala Swamy Garu who passed away today. He was a fighter who championed the cause of Fluorosis victims & an inspiration to many. He will always remain close to my heart. May his soul rest in peace,” the minister tweeted.

Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao also expressed condolences on the death of Swamy, who fought for the eradication of fluorosis throughout his life. In a statement, KCR recalled that Swamy was synonymous to fluorosis which emerged as a big social menace in Telangana in the erstwhile united Andhra Pradesh.

“Swamy’s struggle with humane approach is an inspiration to many during the Telangana struggle,” he said.

Get Latest India Newsalong with Latest Newsand Top Headlinesfrom India and around the world.
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Srinivasa Rao is Senior Assistant Editor based out of Hyderabad covering developments in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana . He has over three decades of reporting experience.

SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP
×
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
My Offers
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Monday, March 27, 2023
Start 15 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Register Free and get Exciting Deals