Sparrows are slowly on the verge of extinction. Several organizations around the world are working to bring sparrows back. There is a man in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh who has been on the Save Sparrow mission for years. Narendra Singh Yadav, former Joint Divisional Development Commissioner, Government of Uttar Pradesh, has dedicated his life to saving the sparrow.
Known as the ‘Sparrow Man’, 62-year-old Narendra Singh has so far distributed over 6,000 nests and helped save over 1.2 lakh sparrows. Narendra says that since 2013 till now he has spent more than 12 lakh rupees on this mission. He says that until he retired, he used to spend 10 percent of his income on this job.
about his mission The best of India Elaborating further, I am happy to say that all members of my family (wife Rashmi Singh and two daughters, Prachi and Pragya Singh) are involved in this endeavour.”
Remembering that the sparrow has been an integral part of his life as a child, Narendra says he wanted to give the same experience to his children.
Narendra says, “I spent my childhood in the village. In the afternoon we spent most of our time with the sparrows in the open fields. My brothers and sisters often named the sparrows and cared for them as if they were our own.
Blood cancer survivor Narendra Singh believes that not even his illness became an obstacle to his mission. When he reached Kanpur from the village, he noticed that the number of sparrows was decreasing.
Recalling his time in Kanpur, Narendra said, “I used to live on the top floor of the building. I remember sometimes sparrows would come there. Then we started placing pieces of bread and before we could understand nothing, again, these birds began to come to us in large numbers”.
It was around this time that news and articles about the extinction of sparrows began to appear in local newspapers. This surprised Narendra as his experience was quite different.
It was quite disappointing for him to read news and newspaper articles about the extinction of sparrows. He says he has decided he will do what he can to increase the sparrow population. He explains: “On the one hand, I used to read about the decline in the number of sparrows, and on the other hand, their numbers were continuously increasing in my yard. So I knew I could work to protect them.”
“Salva Sparrow Mission Got New Direction From Mr. Khanna”
Narendra’s passion to save sparrows took a new direction after he met CL Khanna, a retired bank employee from Kanpur. He says, “After retirement, Mr. Khanna started building nests out of cardboard and wooden boxes. He used to do this work himself and distribute it to those who were willing to save the sparrows. I went to see them and ask them to make a nest.”
He adds, “I was on duty at that time and I remember how happy Mr. Khanna was when I showed interest in taking nests from him. After that, in 2012, I was given five nests and a journey began there.” .
Although Narendra had installed nests in his home, he says the wait for the sparrows to live there was long and painful. He says: “Every morning these sparrows came and ate all the food that was left for them, but not one of them went to the nest. I waited two months. Meanwhile I also spoke to Mr. Khanna and expressed my disappointment. But he asked me to be patient.”
About two months after nesting, the sparrows finally arrived at the nest. Seeing this, Narendra’s happiness knew no bounds. He says, “I still can’t put into words what I felt at that moment. The first call I made was to Mr. Khanna. We exchanged congratulatory messages like children and burst out with joy. After that, of the five nests he had built, three sparrows began to live in them.”
Even cancer could not become a sparrow on mission obstacle
Once the sparrows started living in the nests, they became comfortable and little by little the number of sparrow chicks increased. Says Narendra, “We started naming each sparrow like Priyanka, Dulari, Raju, etc. I was so happy to see them grow up and leave the nest.”
To celebrate the birth of sparrows and to celebrate World Sparrow Day on March 20, Narendra organized a gathering. He says, “We invited Mr. Khanna as the chief guest and distributed nests during the event. We decided to celebrate the increase in sparrow population the way people celebrate their children’s birthdays. On that day, we making delicious items like dahi vada, kadhi pakodas, rajma and sweets.”
Narendra was completely immersed in his work and helping to increase the population of sparrows. But suddenly, in April 2013, he was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cells. Narendra immediately started his treatment. He says that one thing, which gave him happiness even in his illness, was the sparrow.
Says Narendra, “I had to go to Calcutta for my bone marrow transplant. I was treated there and currently he is doing very well.”
“I didn’t want to die”
Narendra says that despite being physically and mentally exhausted on several occasions, he made his love for sparrows and the Save the Sparrow mission his life’s purpose. He says: “My daughters were very young at the time and did not understand the severity of my illness. All they knew was that something was wrong and the general atmosphere in the house was full of fear. However, when my wife and I sat on the balcony with our coffee, we found peace and happiness in watching the sparrows running here and there.”
He says: “There was a longing to live when I saw them. I didn’t want to die.” Today, Narendra, while distributing the nest, gives two nails and two pieces of wood to the people to help them build the nest. He says, “People take a nest, but then plant it, it won’t do any good, will it?”
18-year-old Pragya has always helped her father in this work. She says: “We grew up watching Dad’s love for sparrows. This is definitely something that has changed a lot in us. Although most of the work is done by Papa and Didi and I help them build the nests, package them and manage their social media pages. Our contribution is very small compared to what they have done.”
He adds: “To make things more organized, we’ve also created an organization called the Balance Society. It helps streamline the work that Papa is so passionate about.”
Take special care of these things during nesting
Narendra says there are a few things to keep in mind when planting a sparrow’s nest. He shared some tips:
- First of all, plant the nest as soon as it is found.
- Always make sure the nest is at least eight feet above ground level. This is necessary to prevent cats and other animals from destroying the nest or harming the sparrows.
- Do not place the nest where there is a fan. It can hurt birds.
- Do not place nests in a south direction. It is important to avoid direct sunlight on the nest.
To reach Narendra and be a part of his mission to save the sparrow, you Theirs Twitter handle You can contact them through
Original article: Vidya Raja
Editing: Archana Dubey
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