NMTV Editor-in-Chief Dr. Ravi Subbaiah’s life is a story of battle and struggles that any disabled child has to face. Being born into a poor family added further challenges in his struggle. However he knocked each adversity; changed each into an opportunity and took on life in such a way that today the story of his life and struggle is inspiring one and all. We take immense pleasure in informing you that last week, NMTV Editor-in-Chief Dr. Ravi Subbaiah was invited to address the youth at Oxford London. The trip saw Dr. Ravi Subbaiah interacting with youth at many places to share his story that inspired each one who saw him and heard him. Editor-in-Chief of NMTV – that’s how you know Dr. Ravi Subbaiah but how did he become the first physically challenged accredited television journalist is perhaps what you do not know. Born in Dharavi slums, it was three years after he was born, that Dr. Ravi Subbaiah became a victim of polio. Call it a miracle, a wonder or just destiny that all the 24 other polio-afflicted children admitted at All India Institute of Medical Sciences at Haji Ali in Mumbai with him died during the treatment process while Dr. Ravi Subbaiah was the only child who survived. But the tests of life had just begun. When Dr. Ravi Subbaiah’s mother gave up hope of his recovery and saw only a grim future for her first son, she decided to throw him into the sea. It was here that an evangelist spotted his mother and stopped her. Perhaps that was the turning point of his life. Ravi Subbaiah became one of the few students to be attaining education in the normal mainstream system in National School in Bhandup, Mumbai and then complete his bachelors’ degree from Karmveer Bhaurao Patil College at Vashi. While all this sounds simple, it was anything but that. Poverty has its own effects on childhood and disability only made things worse. Compelled to live in a hand-to-mouth situation, Dr. Ravi Subbaiah’s childhood memories are as heart rendering as can be – food was available for each member in the family only for survival, every festivals went by with no new clothes, no new toys while disability made him a victim of abuse, bickering, insult, embarrassment, neglect and humiliation. But instead of losing to the bitter tests of life, Dr. Ravi Subbaiah turned every adversity into opportunity. With the aim of standing on his own feet, he took tuition classes even as he was a student himself. In his journey from an adolescent to a young man, he learnt to live life daringly, boldly and fearlessly. Perhaps that’s why when he completed his graduation and opted for becoming an entrepreneur against the will of his family and a couple of years later, he took his first step towards the real mission of his life. And he called this mission NMTV – the only local cable news station to be accredited by the government of Maharashtra. Dr. Ravi Subbaiah is the first physically challenged television journalist in the world. This feat was recognized when the University of Jerusalem conferred on him an honorary doctorate. And that is why many call Dr. Subbaiah – destiny’s child who dared to change destiny itself ! Now Dr. Ravi Subbaiah’s story of battling struggles is becoming a source of inspiration for people across the world. So it did not come as a surprise that he got an invite to address and inspire the youth at Oxford London. And last week Dr. Ravi Subbaiah was on a British Airways flight – off to London ! Once he landed at the Heathrow Airport, even Dr. Ravi Subbaiah had not anticipated the warmth with which he would received and the innumerable gatherings that were lined up at venues starting from London to Burmingham to Oxford to see him and hear him. The final addresses were in Oxford London where Dr. Ravi Subbaiah spoke at several venues and interacted especially with the youth committees and youth groups. Dr. Ravi Subbaiah’s speech and address received such tremendous response that his report was covered on the web and he was invited for interviews at radio stations and television channels broadcast in the United Kingdom. The journalist in Dr. Ravi Subbaiah got better off him when he took time off during the trip to enjoy sight-seeing and traveling in a country that is disabled friendly. During his stay in London, Dr. Ravi Subbaiah’s public address and appearances had on-lookers awe-struck. Just by seeing him or hearing him talk of his handicap, his struggles and his success motivated and inspired all !
January 20, 2019