Brit salesman crowned king of Indian village for turning lives around

Last Updated: Sat, Mar 09, 2013 05:40 hrs

A former insurance salesman from Wales has been crowned king of a village in India.

Barry Watson was given the title King Bazza after helping to rescue scores of families from life on a rat-infested rubbish dump.

The Yanadi tribe from Andhra Pradesh have even named their village Barrypuram in his honour, the Daily Express reported.

The 60-year-old father of four forked out 20,000 pounds so they could build huts with light and water and funded a school and a church. He also spent months teaching the villagers to become self-sufficient.

"I wanted to give them a better life without the trappings of Western civilisation, keeping their own culture. On the tip they had nothing. Their life expectancy was only about 40," he said.

Barry was inspired to help after meeting Julie Davies, who runs the Elizabeth-Ann charity in memory of her 16-year-old daughter. He set up a charity of his own, Help The Village, and dedicated his life to raising funds for the community.

He has helped the village women start a sewing business so they can earn money.

Barry, who lives with wife Shirley, 47, in Chepstow, Monmouthshire, now makes regular trips to India to continue his philanthropic work.

His impact has been so profound the community look upon him as their spiritual leader. (ANI)

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