Uttam Transadiya

Super Heroes Don’t Always Come in Capes


Like many of his fellow batch mates, Uttam eagerly looked forward to the weekends,
although not for hanging out with friends, binge watching web series, or partying with
friends, but to spend some time on making a difference to the lives of the under-privileged.
As a child, Uttam was always a prominent face in the crowd as his choices and ideologies
were different from his peers and made him stand out. Reflecting on his life, dreams and
plans, Uttam says, “Ever since I started thinking about my life goal, social service has been a
priority. Like other children whose goals changed with every new class, mine remained
unchanged.I could only see the grief of people and wanted to change the world in my way.”
Uttam completed his engineering from Anand in Gujarat but it was in college that he
realised that machines did not interest him at all and that he had to do something in the
area of uplifting people. He knew that his feelings for the underprivileged were more than
just sympathy. He told himself that he would spend his life doing something that interested
him rather than dabbling in an area purely out of societal pressure.
His family was supportive but since he hails from a business family, they did expect him to
join family business. When Uttam expressed his desire to become a social entrepreneur,
they acceded to his request after initial doubts and apprehensions. Uttam says, “My
mother’s confidence in me was a major driving force. I knew that even if I stumbled, she was
there to back me and push me further.” Uttam had grown up listening to stories about the
early days’ struggles encountered by his parents in establishing their business. These stories
were a great learning for him and he matured beyond his age. He also developed a certain
preparedness for facing crises.”
His first work towards social development which gave him lessons as well, was when he
decided to help a 9-year-old orphan girl who was deprived of education because of lack of
resources. Her uncle and aunt forced her to work in the fields as a wage labourer. Uttam felt
an urge to do something for such children. Every weekend Uttam travelled eight kilometres
to her village with a bag full of books, some chalks and a strong sense of purpose. There he
would set up a small tent with blackboard and chairs and begin his class for village children.
Gradually he garnered support in this initiative and many of his friends joined him.This task taught him that just having good intentions was not enough; one had to first
convince the beneficiaries and bring them on the same page. In this case, he had to invest a
lot of energy in convincing the villagers about who he was, what he meant to do and how
important studies were for children. He slowly built rapport and from 2 students in his class,
the strength rose to 30.
Uttam formalised his organization in the year 2015 and named it Kalrav Foundation. Uttam
says, “Kalrav means the joyful chirping of birds in the sky.”
Today, his NGO has over 5000 members and a huge group of volunteers working on
different agendas. And, the USP of this organization is that it has never sought donations. Its
highly committed volunteers have depended on crowd funding and have always been
successful in meeting their objectives. Uttam’s mother proudly says, “Uttam has made our
family proud. His contribution to society is unparalleled. He has discovered extraordinary
love and affection for other people.”
Uttam believes that certain decisions that one makes become game changer in life and are
destined. He recalls joining PGDM-BE as one such decision. A need for professional training
to manage NGOs was always perceived. It was at this time that he got introduced to EDII
and its PG Programme in Business Management. EDII’s Post Graduate Diploma in
Management- Business Entrepreneurship gave him formal training in social
entrepreneurship; He learnt about all aspects of setting up and managing a social
development organization. Throughout Uttam had felt a certain lack of training which was
proving to be a deterrent in moving ahead, and Uttam was on a look out for an avenue that
could prepare him to run a social development organization. EDII, he says, gave him that
He credits EDII with complete support and guidance. Field training, he particularly terms as
enriching. Uttam recalls how every session was full of learning and opened him to a world of
knowledge. Uttam shares that EDII has a great learning environment. It played a key role in
motivating him and boosting his confidence. The learning that he derived at the institute
helped him grow his newly registered NGO at every stage of the journey. Uttam admits that
his own concept of social entrepreneurship got redefined and nurtured at EDII. During his days at EDII, he remembers discussing all his small social feats with mentors who guided him
on giving it a bigger form under the umbrella of his NGO.
For the youngsters, he shares his words of wisdom, “Bhagwaan Ke Bharose Mat Baitho, Kya
Pata Bhagwan Aapke Bharoshe Baithe Ho” (loosely translated as, ‘Don’t sit there, depending on God,
who knows may be God depends on you.) If your passion helps you give back to society by
doing something meaningful, just go ahead with your ideas. Just keep going and follow what
your inner voice tells you to do. Don’t give up. The universe always falls in love with a
stubborn heart.”

Uttam is on the path of writing stories that will inspire many to give back to society. EDII is
proud of you… Keep rising, keep shining !!!