Inspirational Short Story of a Beggar
We all work for our family or future and we get stuck in our work profiles, due to our own choices and circumstances.
I reside in New Delhi, a very well know Capital city. However, I work in a secluded area, which is about 75 km away from New Delhi. When I was offered the job, I happily accepted it. I thought it will be a wonderful experience to work in tranquility, away from the crowded home city. This place is a small city in Rajasthan, the state of desert in India. My love and imagination has given the city an artistic name called ‘Harmony’. The original name of the city is different but for my inner satisfaction, I call it as ‘Harmony’.
Really, in my soul and the body, it gives me immense satisfaction, to live there. Years back, Harmony was a village but later got changed into an Industrial hub. However, magnificence of the place has remained.
What I like most about the job is my journey to Harmony. I feel intensely touched, when I see people and their lives, on my way to office.
It’s marvelous to wake up early and drive. Nice breezy wind and novelty of the air just adds to my peace. The best element of my journey begins when I am just 5 km away from the destination.
It’s an undersized road, surrounded by vegetation of wheat, with the view of mountains. But there is something unusual in this element. It is scrutiny of a person who is unsighted and is begging on the highway.
This person raises questions in my mind; why does he risk his life for begging? Why begging is so important for him and that too on the highway? There are trucks, buses and cars but this person is standing, pleading the people to pay him.
One day, I decided to know the answers of my questions. I stopped around, pulled this person off the road and sat with him. He was very nice and humble. I asked him why you beg like this, he smiled and started telling me about his life.
God gave me superior life, with my wife Lakshmi and two sons. I couldn’t have asked more, as I have got the best family. I was considered a wealthy man in my village. This is because the village norms make a person rich, if he owns agriculture land and a home.
--I interrupted him and asked what’s your name, he replied smiling, ‘Radhey Saini’.
Then he went on further with his story…
I always believed that my wife was a best wife in the world and I believed firmly that my life will remain wonderful forever. But I committed one mistake in life. This mistake was unforgiving.
To increase my agriculture harvest, I took a loan more than my array and thought that I will invest and do healthy in the next harvest. However, the things didn’t go my way. Crops had not completely matured when the weather went dreadful and it rained heavily. All my harvest got ruined and everything was finished. I lost everything that I earned.
I was completely discouraged but my wife Lakshmi stood by me and encouraged me to revive and work hard again. Lakshmi even asked me if she can work and help me, but I told her that if she will support me, I will fight all the ills of the world.
Before I could take control of the circumstances, my agriculture land was sold to pay the partial debts and my house was sold to take care of my daily needs. But I didn’t give up and kept trying.
One day, I left home to travel to Harmony, to try some options. Two people on a motorbike came and stopped near me. They asked ‘Are you Radhey’? I said, yes, can I help you. They said ‘Where the hell are you running?’ I asked ‘Who are you”
They said, ‘we are hired by your debtor, who lent you money for the crops’. He has sent us to find you and we believe you are running? I told them, I am not running and just going to Harmony for some work. They asked me to give them all the money that I had. I told them, I don’t have much money and requested them to let me go. But they hit me on my head, with a brick and left me bleeding, on the road. They took my money.
Few hours later, when I was conscious again, it was all dark and I was unable to see anything! Yes, I was made blind for few thousand Rupees.
Since then, I have offered my wife many times, to leave me and get married to someone else. But she has never agreed and always stopped talking to me for my suggestion. She always says that she will live and die with me.
She held my hand and encouraged me saying, ‘I have full confidence and trust on you. You can still work hard and feed me and my children’.
I was lifeless from within but thanks to God who has given me Lakshmi, my power and soul. She made me stand again to fight the world. I decided to learn everything that was needed for a blind man, to live without eyes.
I learnt all the blind skills to work. It was really tough but I managed to learn all of them. I wanted to work hard and earn for my family.
I requested some work from the cattle feeders and was given a job of feeding the cows. But my fate did not help me. One day, when I started feeding the cows, in-spite of feeding green bushes, I fed the cow with rotten bushes. This was due to my blindness, as I picked wrong bushes in miscalculation. Even though I tried to be perfect with the blind skills, I couldn’t get perfect. Possessor of the cows slapped me and said ‘you stupid blind man, you can’t do anything right. Just get out of here, as you are good for nothing. Go and become a beggar. Don’t show me your face again.
Imagine, how one feels when he is beaten for his blindness.
I then tried working in a factory as peon, where I served water to the guests and the company owner. One day the company owner -my boss removed his shoes at the door and asked for water. My boss never used to remove shoes at the door but I don’t know why he did it on that day. While bringing water through the door, my foot bumped into his shoes and I was down on the floor. The glass broke and water spilt. My boss called the security and told them, ‘Throw- the blind man away’. I cried, I apologized, but he didn’t listen and I was out.
Imagine how one feels when he is thrown on the road for his blindness.
After that I tried many other options like truck cleaning, home cleaning, shoe polish, tobacco selling etc but no one supported me. I was rather beaten up for my blindness and was always suggested to become a beggar.
Few days later, my children were not allowed to enter the school due to non payment of fees. At that time I was hardly earning one time food for my family and this one time food was earned after taking several beatings everyday.
I have only one friend in the world, Lakshmi. One day, I shared my grief with her that I am beaten everyday. I told her that the beatings are for not being perfect due to my blindness and everyone suggests me to become a beggar. That day Lakshmi cried a lot and said that she would go out for work. I told her that I can suffer beatings but can’t suffer any mishap or beating to my wife. I told her clearly that I will die but not let her work.
I then decided, I will beg. I will beg for my family. I will beg for my livelihood. I was made to believe that begging is the profession defined for the blind man and no one will beat me for choosing this profession. I asked Lakshmi ‘Are you with me?’ Lakshmi cried and said I am with you always.
From next day, I started a business that the world designated me, ‘The begging’ business. I tried begging on the streets, at the doors, in the buses. But no way, I was able to feed my family completely. Therefore, I decided to do something different and earn more from the begging business. Today I beg artistically on the highway and I earn good amount. Now, I am able to feed my wife and my children completely. I am also able to make my children study in a charitable school.
(he stopped speaking and went back to the highway)
Today, Radhey stands on the highway to ‘Harmony’, where I work. He stands bowing his head and hands stretched. People stop their vehicles, to pay him money. I also encouraged him by paying some money and I don’t regret it. I will not call it begging, but I will call it a forced business that we ‘the world’ have forced him into. I think ‘Radhey Saini’ should be proud of his business.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2012 Parampreet Singh Arora aka Param Arora