AHMEDABAD, INDIA, November 18, 2013 (Times Of India): Some sing for fame, some for pleasure. But Namrata Shodhan sings to heal -- she has devoted her singing to the cause of helping needy patients of renal failure get life-saving dialysis.
In the past five years, the 50-year-old's music has helped raise around US$81,000 for hospitals for dialysis. In the past year, Namrata has collected $16,000 through her singing and given the money to three hospitals in Nadiad, Rajkot and Ahmedabad to fund about 25,000 dialysis procedures. Patients with kidney failure need dialysis every fourth day to survive. Each procedure costs between $5 and $22.50 in government or trust-run hospitals. In private hospitals, it costs between $24 and $32.
Namrata took to devotional Krishna music early in life. Later she moved to the US. On her return to Ahmedabad in 1998 she started giving free bhajan lessons -- that group has swelled to a 200-member Satsang Mandal today. Namrata also started organizing concerts of Meera bhajans without charge a fee. A chance meeting with kidney patient and Bharatnatyam dancer Nikita Ghiya in 2009 prompted her to ask people to support the cause of renal-failure patients.
Namrata along with gynaecologist friend Dr. Darshana Thakkar put together a collection of 42 audio CDs as personal and corporate gifts. "I never ask for donations," says Namrata. "I just convey [information] to people about the cause and people support it."