Kerala floods 2018 have devastated the most parts of the picturesque state and efforts are going on to rebuild it from the ruins. As the donations and help have been pouring in, a few heart-warming stories have emerged. One of those belongs to Khimji Prajapati. A beggar, who hails from Mehsana of Gujarat, has donated Rs 5,000 for the flood victims in Kerala. What makes Prajapati’s noble gesture more touching is the fact that he has been suffering from cancer, according to media reports.
Prajapati had donated the money to the district collector of Mehsana on Saturday. The 71-year-old is a stomach cancer patient and could not walk without the assistance of crutches. Prajapati also lauded the Gujarat government’s move to donate Rs 10 crore assistance.
The additional resident collector of Mehsana Harshad Vohra has hailed Prajapati’s move and termed this as exemplary for everyone to follow. However, this is not the first time that Prajapati has shown his benevolent nature. Earlier, he had donated from his alms to help girl students. He has also donated his entire year’s collection through begging to encourage school children. Such activities by Prajapati has proven that “We live in deeds, not in years”.
Last month, the Centre had announced that all donations to the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund and the Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund are tax-free, while contributions to NGOs meant for Kerala flood victims will get 50 per cent Income Tax rebate. Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) accepts voluntary contributions from individuals, organisations and trusts. All contributions towards this fund are exempt from Income Tax under Section 80(G).
“For non-governmental organisations (NGOs), it depends if they have an exemption under the Income Tax Act. If so, 80G allows 50 per cent rebate,” he was quoted as saying by PTI. An official said donations to the Kerala Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund have also been exempted from income tax.
In order to facilitate the speedy issue of 80(G) Income Tax receipts, donors should provide the transaction details of donations deposited directly in any of the PMNRF collection banks along with the address of the donor through e-mail at email@example.com. A government official said private donations from abroad to Kerala flood victims have no restrictions if they follow certain rules and routes, even though India as a policy does not accept any donation from foreign governments for disaster victims. He said individuals and private entities can contribute for the Kerala flood victims subject to certain conditions.