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And He Did It! N. Krishnan — A True Youth Icon

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By Oviya Govindan:

Once upon a time, there lived young Krishnan all of 29, a Maduraite. He trained himself in Hotel Management and culinary skills. He worked in a Five Star Hotel and got a lucrative job offer in Switzerland. It was a dream come true. He decided to visit Madurai to bid farewell to all. But fate had other plans for him…

The sight of the old and uncared for, starving was not new to Krishnan. India was full of such sights. However seeing a man eat his own waste out of unbearable hunger was too much for a man to bear. He says, “I was benumbed. Sleep deserted me that night as the old man’s image kept flitting in and out of my mind.” What is this human nature! It gets moved by such sights never to be forgotten. You would expect Krishnan to now sigh and say, ‘Ah, but what difference can I make after all..’ and continue Swiss-ward.

But there you will be mistaken. His Swiss journey never happened. He HAD to act to orient himself to change the plight of these people. The destitute.

Starting by cooking in his mother’s kitchen, and distributing food packets to the starving, mentally ill across the city he had to sometimes wash and bathe them, and feed them three meals a day. Literally.

India has one quarter of the world’s hungry population and is facing an acute shortage of proper food resources. In such a scenario, N. Krishnan has taken the lead to change things in Madurai, to begin with.

With a Maruti van that was donated by a well wisher, he reaches out to 120 people across Madurai giving them clean and home cooked food, never compromising on quality. With potable water filled in used plastic bottles collected from hotels, and steaming hot food, Krishnan brings a smile to the faces of the destitute. Some recognize his face, acknowledge the service, and even await his arrival. While some are in no condition to recognize him. He still goes on, hoping he can make a difference. He sure does.

With an estimate of 500 mentally ill people roaming the streets of Madurai, he strives to reach out to as many as possible while his perennial fear is that even if he fails to go one day, these people would start eating out of garbage again. Run entirely on donations from well wishers who contribute for the meals, his family chips in to make ends meet. He also puts his culinary skills to use by running a catering service that can serve 500 people. The profit from this serves to meet the needs of Akshaya Trust he started in 2002.

Dismay of parents turned to supporting every stage of his growth and today he has been recognized in a few forums for his excellence and dedication to humanitarian service. He also won the CNN Heroes award in 2008. Success rests lightly on his shoulders however, as he works incessantly for his cause. Hunger is one of the most agonizing human experiences. Deriving his energy and drive from the need to end the misery of Hunger in humans, he continues undaunted. Today he plans to establish a home for the mentally deranged women and feed, care for them.

And so, many of the poor and hungry breathe easier, thanks to committed individuals such as these. With conscious action by every individual in their limited capacity, a difference can be made. Ask Mr. N Krishnan.

Akshaya Trust can be contacted at 91-0452-4353439 or 91-98433-19933 or

[Youth Icons is Youth Ki Awaaz’s section where we feature young change-makers who are dedicated to change the society by contributing in all possible ways. These are the unsung heroes who make it happen. These are not regular politicians or the celebrities who are thought to be the icons, but the ones who motivate us and drive us towards a better world. You can read more about the previous ones here.]

Youth Ki Awaaz is also supporting the World Food Program in its fight against hunger. To know more about the WFP visit and

You must be to comment.
  1. Atiya

    Go Krishnan!
    And thanks Oviya for sharing the story, its nice to know there are still some human beings left on earth.

    1. Akshaya

      Thanks for your feed back. We are willing to furnish additional details if you need


    An eye opener for those who, after completing their MBA, take the next flight to abroad to work under comfortable conditions accompanied with tempting incentives. If more talented youngsters could realise their ‘kartavya’ towards the nation, then it wont be hard to alleviate various problems pravelant in India.

    1. Akshaya

      Thanks for your feed back. We will be happy to provide additional details if you need

  3. End World Hunger

    Thats an incredible and inspiring story. Keep up the amazing work Krishnan! There are not enough of you in the world

  4. Arijit

    Bless you. May the prayers and the wishes always keep you going. Proud to be of the same nationality as you are Mr. Krishnan.

  5. Tanaya

    wowwww….m stunned..

  6. Radhika

    Its as I’ve always belived – One person can Make The Difference!
    Fabulous to knw there are ppl out there who act on it!

  7. vinay

    Excellent piece of news. I would like to help out Krishnan and would appreciate some more news articles on him.

  8. mascarenhas mingueline

    may god bless ur hard work….. trust me all these things wil not go in waste….. there is lot of blessings instored for you!!!!

  9. Sudhakaran

    N Krishnan is more than an icon for me. He is the very personification, for me, of that aspect of god that we call as true love. The universe will always bless him, for he blesses the universe with his incredible feats of daring love. No words can describe his deeds. Absolutely no words. Krishnan’s deep love is a source of awe and admiration.


    My self having lived in India for like 6years, studied, worked and married there with no bad records of misbehavior in anyway, i have couple of india friends in the police and other sectors during my stay. On my arrival here in my country (Nigeria) I discovered that we have thousands of good indians working and living peacefully in here that can serve as an eye witness of the situation in my country. I equally know and believe that most Nigeria youths out there in India looking for their green fortune are finally indulging into one illegal activity or the other. Reason for is best known to them and to those good Indians residing in Nigeria. Nigeria government needs to amend their leadership system giving and rendering service of why they were voted not pushing and creating rooms for such criminal mind in the life of our great youths. I seek the help of this organization on what to do, how you can come in establishing your NGO here in Nigeria for charity in any kind. I’m ready to welcome such good work you’ve doing in India here in Nigeria. Thank you..

  11. Madhav Pai


  12. jay prakash jain

    excellent ….


    Hy all the NGO ,my society name RADHA KASOW EDUCATIONAL AND HEALTH SOCIETY ,ALL THE NGO PLEZ spotted my ngo .at time a god project do it -free aducation provide,Diploma and MBA for 80 thousand below income her family .IF HAVE THIS TYPE student you cont with me.can you spotted any way my NGO say all are thanks. JHARKHAND,,,, CONT:-09334018095.

  14. sandesh

    can any one help me to get the job here

  15. Awdhesh kumar saxena

    i am a k saxena very much intrested to join you ,and serve the poors my back grond wasmanager of tea estate in india and nepal will you suggest what can i do to join

  16. susil bhue

    how can i join

  17. simra pathan

    I like to join

  18. Rachna


    I will be extremely priveledged to record the ground breaking work you are doing! I can narrate them, create short films, do as they say voice overs- sing and help distribute to those who can make a difference.

    Would like to send in some of your work interms of writing , we can adapt them,

    Technology has come as a present today. Raring to go and create an enviable record.
    Merit ,

    (Don’t even think about paying me!)

  19. shubhra

    Read story tear in my eyes i want to do just like u im in ghaziabad Is there any ur branch

  20. pavithra

    thankyou god. u have left u in this world by this krishnan sir.i am so glad .i was searching this for all these days.i want to accompany temples of our tamilnadu,there are still lot of human waiting for help.can we do something for them?

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