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Yes! Belly is bigger than degrees

A BA rickshaw puller. A lawyer auto-rickshaw driver. A BSc washer man and an MA taxi driver. Well that?s how educated ones are taking up smaller jobs to eke out their living. They are sweating hard. But, the sweat hasn?t washed away their ambitions.

india Updated: Jun 14, 2006 00:01 IST

A BA rickshaw puller. A lawyer auto-rickshaw driver. A BSc washer man and an MA taxi driver.

Well that’s how educated ones are taking up smaller jobs to eke out their living.

They are sweating hard. But, the sweat hasn’t washed away their ambitions.

And the dream that they would achieve their goal keeps them on a high.

“Sometime people’s gestures discourage us. But, we know we are doing our job.

We have no option, but to brave humiliation and carry on. Well, that’s life,” they say almost with the same zeal.

“When somebody sitting on my rickshaw asks me if I were literate, I feel happy telling him I am not like others who pull it. I am different. I am educated,” says Nand Kishore Chaudhary, a graduate from Gandhi Vishwa Vidyalaya.

Nand Kishore, a resident of Sitapur, completed his graduation in Hindi and Economics. While in college, he dreamt of a handsome job and luxurious life.

Search of job ended nowhere. But his monetary miseries landed him pulling a rickshaw in Hazratganj.

“I will not continue pulling rickshaw. After earning enough, I will set up my own atta chakki,” adds Nand Kishore, determined to educate his children to the best. Ram Gulam, a rickshaw puller tells about Baccha Singh, with pride who continued his studies even while pulling rickshaw and finally got selected in police.

Now come to something more shocking and sensational. But true — a lawyer destined to drive auto-rickshaw! “Mounting debt smashed my life and widespread lawlessness in the field of law crushed my principles. Ultimately I did what my conscience suggested. I gave up law practise and held auto-steering ” says Vinay Verma (name changed), BA, LLB from LU.

Vinay, famous as vakil sa’ab among fellow autowallas, started driving auto to pay back his loans. But, once stepped in, he could never switch back to his old world. “I even took initiatives to form an auto union. But reluctance of drivers, illegal vasulli by police and undue interference of local mafia forced me step back,” says Vinay with dignity and disappointment. Here comes another auto-richshaw driver, Pusp Kumar Gupta— an MA from Kanpur University.

He turned down many Jobs, wishing to flourish his family business. But business failed badly and he ended up the roads of Nishatganj driving an auto. “We have to bear the abuses of drunkards and curses of policemen. Even people look down on us. If I would have been illiterate, probably I had tolerated this. But my literacy urges me to rebel,” says a dejected Gupta.

Here comes a different story that is more heroic than destined: Harish Chandra Kanaujia, a BSc (final year) student at BSNVPG College, Charbagh is planning for an MBA.

But presently he is forced to work as a washer man in spare time for his expenses of fees and books.

“When I saw my family languishing economically, I took up this job without hesitation. Today I not only assists my family but also saves enough for my further studies,” says Harish.

First Published: Jun 14, 2006 00:01 IST