This Diwali, Add Divinity To Your Wealth!


Marzee Kerawala is a Certified Financial Planner with expertise in Income Tax and Investment products. Managing assets worth over Rs. 4 Billion, his firm ‘NiveshIndia’, designs Tailored Investment Strategy through Customised Financial Planning for individuals and NRIs, and also handles Treasury Management for corporates and SMEs. You can contact him at +91 9987567667 or Email: marzeek@niveshindia.co.in [Website is www.niveshindia.in]


It’s Diwali time, and I was wondering what topic would be most relevant and beneficial to our readers on personal finance. We all do Laxmi Puja, it is a form of worshipping the Goddess of Wealth. But I wonder if that brings divinity to our Wealth? When one uses his wealth to help the right people, for right reasons – that, according to me, brings divinity. 

Us Parsis are known for our philanthropic nature; I have grown up hearing this phrase, ‘Parsi, thy name is Charity’. When I sit to discuss with my clients their succession and estate planning, most times, their reply is, we have made a will and we have given away most of our money to charities. Many single senior citizen clients, for whom we plan, donate, in their wills, large contributions to institutions and organisations like Doongerwadi, Parsi General Hospital, Fire Temples and other community institutions. 

The one common thing about this is that all fear and doubt if the money will reach the right hands. Some worry that even if it reaches the right organisation, will it be utilized appropriately? If you do not care too much about the tax concessions U/s 80G and like to share with the less privileged that you have accumulated, there are simpler ways to reach out. Sharing with the right intention and mind-set can bring about a lot of divinity to one’s wealth. 

Here are a few things you could consider:

When a daily wage earner meets with an accident or falls ill, he won’t have Mediclaim to fall back on. The family is severely impacted when an earning member falls ill. It affects their income and many families do not recover from the setback created by the illness. You can chip in to meet some portion of medicines, pre or post hospitalisation expenses, if any. In case of private hospitalisation, many end up with their years of savings wiped off.

Many people work hard to fund their children’s education fees, but their earnings are insufficient to provide for higher education costs. By volunteering to help them, you can make a huge difference in their lives. Just don’t be a lazy donor who signs a cheque, it would be best if you can spend some time and energy and get involved. You can start with your maids, drivers, security guards and other service providers. If you have the right intentions, you will meet sincere children with dreams for making it big. You can be a coach or mentor in their lives. Gather your resources and help them in whatever way you can – it could be as simple as guiding them to the Trust you know of, or helping them with documentation. 

It is not always money, even if your income does not permit you to give away large sums of money due to the ongoing pay cuts or other reasons, you can extend your help by pooling in used laptops, mobile phones, bicycles, books, clothes etc. for children who are in genuine need, to attend their online classes. You will find it immensely fulfilling.

Donations and involvements of this kind foster strong connections and are very impactful. Even the small amounts create a huge positive change in the lives of people around you. It empowers them with courage and confidence. It’s not always about cutting big, fat cheques as donations to organisations and institutions. Nor is it about bequeathing all your wealth in your will to charities. You may not know how your money is utilised and you will not be there to see the fruits it has borne.  

There are many ways you can make sure the money that is surplus for you reaches those who need it the most. Give a Diwali bonus to your maid even if she has not seen you for the last eight months. Tip that Uber driver or the Swiggy delivery boy with a smile. Buy goods from street children who come to your car windows and display their wares, waiting for you in the scorching heat, at traffic signals. Though we may not appreciate the quality of their wares, simply buy it from them to gift it to the kids on the next signal. When you go out buying fruits and vegetables, do not ask for that loose change. The least you can do is not bargain with them. 

When you step up and use the services of people around you, you are supporting their economic activity, you are making a difference. Don’t always assume you will be taken for a ride. Nurture the genuine intent to help – that is what ultimately counts. There is one way of donating, which is the easy and lazy act of signing a cheque. The idea to do service and sacrifice, is as prominent as big amounts of donations. Those who make the effort to engage, do it directly. The interactions, experiences and the understanding you gain, are priceless. Thereafter, even if you miss your Laxmi Poojan on Dhanteras day, believe me, Goddess Laxmi’s divinity will shower you with loads of wealth, along with peace and happiness. Just try it!  

Marzee Kerawalla

About Marzee Kerawalla

Marzee Kerawala is a Certified Financial Planner with expertise in Income Tax and Investment products. Managing assets worth over Rs. 4 Billion, his firm ‘NiveshIndia’, designs Tailored Investment Strategy through Customised Financial Planning for individuals and NRIs, and also handles Treasury Management for corporates and SMEs. You can contact him at +91 9987567667 or Email: marzeek@niveshindia.co.in [Website is www.niveshindia.in]

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