RIP Gangamma

May 2, 2020

RIP Gangamma

Food shelter security hardly takes away torture and cruelty
Time memorial mind reminder leads to ultimate destiny
Desire devotion demand appetite takes you miles away
Rare care share family dear one’s leave to live at bay

Struggle strife tramp and trudge keeps the family happy and bloom
Leave the home shatter shame bring glow home away home
Fast penance strongest affection children to grow in maturation
Creator founder author designer destiny holder in adoration

Blazing Rocket modern gadgets fills not the strained stomach
Empty promises flowery pledges make no people unable to able
Loving heart caring mind folding hands builds bruised broken ankle
Slum or plum royal or petal God dwells in human heart the tabernacle

Fund and bandh lockdown to knockdown none to care the migrants
Taxi to mazy no flour to mix water to quench only legs are secure
Food or shed how the poor will get the bread at night only wet stomach
Name and fame donations plums photos comes in as much shack cloth

No one to notice forlorn journey Bangalore to Raichur strange indeed
Orphan thy children motherly affection walked back miles and dead
No other memo mother’s love demo big bond made eternal gust
Corona rocks sheer and steep the ship of humankind to dust

Dire deep depression needs only consolation
Gangamma you have run your race
Let us run ours in any case
RIP Gangamma


A 33-year-old construction worker died on her way to home Raichur from Bengaluru in April. The woman, identified as Gangamma, allegedly died of hunger when she was sent being back home by her employer in Bengaluru.


Fr Joachim D'Souza
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Comment on this article

  • Alphonso Dsouza, Mumbai

    Mon, May 04 2020

    Fr. Dsouza, it was a very touchy send off to Gangamma. Thank you for writing this poem in honour of a labourer. Like her, many have succumbed to their fate while inching towards their home; Sadly, i repeat, very sadly ... we do not have an emergency and contingency plan in case of Epidemics or Pandamics. We boast of our successes in other field. India is blessed with a lot of talent and resources. Our failure emanates from the fact that we do not have forward thinking and efficient planners within our Governments and concerned departments. Look at the present action.... buses and trains are made available to take the migrants home; this could have been done just before declaring the lock down. Whilst the pax are on trains, governments (State/Centre) would like to charge fare to these poor, lost out citizens of India. Pray that the Good Lord guide our leaders to serve India Better.

  • Alwyn, Mangalore

    Mon, May 04 2020

    Dear Fr. Joachim.

    Indeed a very touching poem, well captured the hearts of the needy... specially Gangamma to be remembered. lets not forget all our houses are built by such wonderful people, whom we do not recognize in todays world.

  • James Fernandes, Barkur Chicago

    Sun, May 03 2020

    Who said, "Poor will be there always." While some of us use golden commodes, there are some who have nothing to unload. Will Corona to the rescue?

  • Monica Pinto, Mangalore

    Sun, May 03 2020

    Dear Fr. Joachim

    Heart touching poem, of course a very sensitive issue discussed.

  • Fr Vincent D Souza, Capuchin, Mogarnad

    Sun, May 03 2020

    Dear Fr Joachim, congratulations and thanks for this beautiful poem. You have spoken about the reality in the Society. You have brought out this reality like a prophet. To know and understand the struggles of the underprivileged, downtrodden, oppressed is need of the hour. Many a times we forget the tremendous service rendered by these people. They struggle in their life, but the society rarely comes to their aid. What is most important is to become humane and show the human values in the time of crisis. Thanks a lot Fr for the thought provoking poem.

  • L. Andrade, Mangalore/Hyderabad

    Sun, May 03 2020

    Dear Fr. Joachim D'Souza,

    Fully agree with the comments from Mr. John B. Monteiro.

    What a poignant and stark reality to face for folks like Gangammas who contribute so very much day in and day out to our lives and society, but hardly get any benefits of their labour? It is imperative that we go all out to support them in these challenging times and beyond as well rather than contribute to fill the coffers of the exchequers! I am doing my bit and hope to do even better in the days ahead. Thank you Fr. Joachim D'Souza.

  • John B. Monteiro, Bondel Mangalore

    Sat, May 02 2020

    Dear Fr. Joachim D’Souza:
    I am no judge of poetry. But, the motivation and presentation by you is excellent. I hope more of us recognize the excellent work done by Gangammas all around us and support bit more in the lives of our Gangammas.
    Good work to rouse us, Fr. Joakhim.

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