Two weeks ago, animal rights activist Shravan Krishnan was chatting with his friend and Indian cricketer KL Rahul, when the latter promised to donate his cash reward for animal welfare, the next time he received the man of the match award. On January 17, in the second ODI against Australia, Rahul made himself indispensable with the bat and rightfully bagged the title and Rs.1 lakh.
"I knew he would send the money right after he won. But what surprised me was that he had sent double the amount that he won," says Shravan. "He transferred a total of Rs. 2 lakh to the Besant Memorial Animal Dispensary (BMAD)," he adds.
The dispensary acts as an outreach programme for animal welfare at the Theosophical Society and Shravan is the centre's coordinator. As a former cricketer who represented Tamil Nadu, he had met KL Rahul multiple on and off the field. The two men had even attended South Zone camps together in the past.
"Rahul and I have always been in touch and when I put photos of injured animals on Instagram he would tell me that it was difficult to even look at them," says Shravan. "He always said that he can't be hands on and help us at the centre but that we should contact him for any financial assistance," he adds.
BMAD is involved in specialised medical care for animals, animal rescue, disaster aid for animals and vaccination programs. The money, says Shravan, will be used to cover the cost for these activities.
Rahul's kind gesture came to light, after Shravan posted a message on Facebook thanking his friend. He also mentioned that this was not the first time that the cricketer had displayed his love for animals.
"Its quite an amazing feeling to get support from your close friends for the work you do. Kl Rahul and I have been friends for close to 12 years , right from our U-17 state cricket days. KL was one of the most talented and hard working cricketers from our batch and deservedly gone on to achieve much bigger things in cricket. After receiving the Man of the match against Australia in the second ODI , he promised to donate his cash reward of Rs. 1 lakh to BMAD," wrote Shravan. "And as he promised he donated his cash reward plus another 1 lakh towards BMAD. His gesture is definitely going to help a lot of animals at BMAD and this is not the first time he has helped. He always messages me asking if we need help and follows every single post of our work . We at BMAD thank him for his contribution KL, thanks for being a champ on and off the field !" he added.