Leading a full life


With the sporty spirit of a teenager and a heart of gold, she likes to call herself “a woman with a mission”. Meet Neelam Pratap Rudy — a passionate golfer and philanthropist. She is the wife of politician Rajiv Pratap Rudy and a proud mother of two daughters — Ayshreya and Atisha.

For Neela, donning multiple hats of a homemaker, sportsperson and a social figure was never a problem, because she always believed in living her life to the fullest. She says, “I come from a a ver liberal yet traditional family where my father always encouraged me to be independent, whereas my mother always insisted that I should be a perfect ‘housewife’.
As a student, I changed my school and college many times since my dad had a transferable job. My initial education started in Tehran and then I studied in Dehradun, Kasauli, Digboi, Ambala and Ajmer. Those days most of the parents wanted their girls to get married into a good family. But my parents were in no hurry for any such thing. I used to be very active in school sports and played all the games one could at that time. As the school head in Ambala, I was introduced to social services, where we would go to Shishu Bhavan every weekend. It will be a very memorable aspect of my life because it was there that I got a chance to work with Mother Teresa.”
Neelam was married to Rajiv when she was 23 and had her first child at the age of 25. She recalls, “After marriage I moved with my husband to Bihar and that’s where I had my first encounter with poverty. I hail from Himachal, where nobody is extremely poor. But the kind of misery I saw in the small villages of Bihar made me very sensitive and aware. I used to write to all my friends and ask them to send me their old belongings; we would pack them and send it to the villages anonymously.”
She has so far, helped spread awareness about the atrocities towards the girl child, cyber crime, cervical cancer etc. But thalassaemia, is a cause really close to Neelam’s heart. She says, “I feel that there are so many people in the world and there is so much blood that people donate every year, so no one should die of blood shortage. Due to medical reasons I am not allowed to donate blood, but in my family my husband regularly donates blood and we both support this cause actively.”
Neelam, who prides herself on being active on social-networking sites, reveals that it is a powerful medium to spread the message. She says, “Texting every friend is not possible these days, so I feel social networking is the best way to stay in spread the word regarding anything. However, I feel that the next biggest crime threat that we will be facing in the coming years will be cyber crime. I really feel that youngsters these days should be really careful about this lurking danger.”


Wow, I am very impressed with

Wow, I am very impressed with this woman. She can set an example for everyone who wants to lead a full life, both men and women.

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