This is an incredible story of the reach and power of crowdfunding.
This is the story of Nitesh Prajapat, a student and an entreprenuer, his fight against cancer and how his batch-mates pitched in to help him.
A former student of IIT-Kanpur and a current one at IIM-Calcutta, Nitesh hails from Jaipur in Rajasthan. He also runs his own startup.
Nitesh's life turned upside down when he found out that he had developed a stage-3 cancerous tumour.
For someone belonging to a middle-class family, with no medical insurance, the cost of treatment "became too much of a burden" for him and his family.
So Nitesh recently started a crowdfunding campaign on Ketto to raise Rs 15,00,000 for his medical treatment.
And incredibly, within just 24 hours from the start of the campaign on Thursday, Nitesh had managed to reach his goal.
“This is one of the fastest campaigns where the goal amount was raised in 24 hours,” Varun Sheth, founder and CEO of Ketto, said.
He also added that most of the contributors were Nitesh’s ex and current batch mates from IIT and IIM.
On his campaign page Nitesh wrote, "I had not been keeping well lately and I thought it must've been because of stress, managing work and studies. When my health condition deteriorated beyond a point, I got few medical check-ups done. After which we found out that I had developed a Stage 3 Cancerous Tumour."
He added, "I am mentally prepared to give a tough fight to Cancer, and want to ensure I do that without hampering my work and studies. Since I come from a middle-class family, it is financially almost impossible for us to bear the expenses of the treatment – an estimate of Rs 15,00,000 to 20,00,000."
Observing that cancer harms not just mentally but also financially, Nitesh explained that his family had been bearing his medical expenses till that point. But, he soon had to go in to surgery, and that required a hefty amount they could not possibly arrange.
Messages poured in from far and wide wishing him good health and speedy recovery.
Just before the campaign neared its goal, Nitesh posted a status thanking all those who had supported him and showed him love and affection.
"As I go into surgery soon, I am now depending on your prayers, and prayers of millions more. Please share this with as many people possible," he wrote.
By Friday, the campaign had already generated Rs 16,43,780 following which it was ended.
The funds collected through Ketto will be used for Nitesh's treatment, which includes hospital expenses, medicines and required treatments. Regular updates about the expenses and his prognosis will be provided, to keep donors posted.
“If Nitesh requires more funds, Ketto will be there to help him. It is a long battle and we wish him a speedy recovery,” Varun said.