Everyone has the Right to Dignity

On a crisp Sunday morning (the days that I absolutely love), I was sitting in my balcony with a cup of coffee and a book. I was immersed in the book, was living the life of the characters, enough to take me away from my weekday life when I heard some noises from inside. I thought the television had been switched on and ignored it but gradually the volume increased. Intrigued and irritated, I got up from the very comfortable seat I was in and went inside. The scene that unfolded was not something new. My father in law and my house help were having a very heated argument. I looked on waiting for an opportunity to intervene and stop the drama, I was hearing all nasty things that my father in law was telling her, she herself is not a saint but she was replying in a manner which was much more sophisticated than him. He was not abusing her but commanding her to do her job in a very ruthless manner. At least in my world I consider it ruthless.
So one night I was out for dinner, we went to this pick up your sandwich and leave kind of a place, we entered, ordered, and were waiting for our order to given, when this man barged in and started shouting at the top of his lungs that his sandwich had a sauce that he had not ordered. The cashier tried reasoning with him, human errors happen, that he would replace the sandwich and compensate too. But this man was not ready to listen anything, he was shouting and being abusive in between. One of the things he said was that he could get the shops closed and make everyone loose their jobs and bring them on road. I mean it was just an extra sauce in the sandwich.

On one of my market visits I heard a lady busy arguing with a rickshaw puller about the money he was charging, we all do that some time or the other. But suddenly she slapped the guy out of the blue and the poor old man did not know what to do, tears welled his eyes. And the woman was constantly abusing him, his condition and his roots. I mean come on, don’t give that extra rupee if you don’t want to, he is not going to snatch it from you.

There are many such instances at the back of my mind where we dehumanize a fellow human being for the simple reasons of them being poor, or working under or for us, or just because we think we own everything in the world or simply because we don’t respect other’s dignity. I understand that sometimes we need to be strict to make our point and we can’t comply with everything sent our way. But I always believe that being rude and abusive in such matters is not the solution. We can be stern but not necessarily rude. We should be atleast be respectful of other person’s dignity. It is the least we can do!

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The Miracle Man

This is about an amazing man I have come cross lately. He is considerate, kind, hardworking, and reliable. I know too many qualities for a man to have right!! He is a dream come true man, a conversation with him for a while increases his respect manifold times for me. And you must be wondering where did I find such a good catch, Ahhh, he is my new autowallah (Auto= a mode of transport in India, Autowllah=A man who drives the auto). I use the public transport a lot and the kind of city I live in, at times it can be hassle to find a means of transport and then be able to trust that guy (I mean did you just hear a taxi driver was masturbating while escorting a female customer).

So coming back to this amazing guy, I am sure my husband would be super jealous, but lest I care you have to hear about him to appreciate him.

Let the story begin,

So this man drives an auto for a living, he has recently purchased the vehicle and pays 7500 INR per month as emi, he makes between 20 to 25k per month and his wife who is a cook makes around 15k per month, hence a monthly income of around 35 to 40k per month, (OMG I am good with math). Anyway he starts his day at 7 am ends around 11 pm, plans to get rid of the emi as soon as possible so he can buy a cab and then he says he would make better money. He haggles like a pro when we stop for grocery shopping, also keeps recommending better places to shop and keeps giving me tricks and tips. You feel safe when he drives you around the city, yeah you can never be too sure of anyone and I am always on the alert especially when its late but in the past two months I have not felt unsafe, I live in India we learn to be alert.  But we have nice men around too and I think he is a good example of it, atleast till now.

So you say what is so amazing about this man he seems like a regular hardworking man, and I tell you ahead, Patience.

The other day he met my daughter for the first time, and as usual he started talking, he told me that he has a daughter who would turn 4 soon and he is on a lookout for a school for her, he asked where my daughter goes, enquired about the fee structure and dismissively admitted that he can’t afford it. And then he began in his usual baritone lyrical voice that he dreams that his daughter goes to a nice school, studies as much as she wants. He told me he would also start a school cab for her as he does not want her daughter to travel in his auto every day, it would be an additional expense he told me. He went on to explain that he has categorically explained to his parents that he is not planning a second kid, he wants the best for this one, he wants to make sure that his daughter gets the best of everything in the world and he is ready to stretch his limits. He goes on to explain that expenses are too much these days and it’s only sane to have a single child and raise irrespective of gender the child properly.

So there are multiple reasons I love this man (I mean not literally) I mean I love his thought process

  • He is ready to work really hard for the wellbeing of his child that too a girl in India where many are killed in the womb. He is uneducated but he wants the best education for his little girl. The other day he found out that I might be travelling abroad soon and he told me to take money from him and buy nice dresses for his daughter.
  • He does not want a second child, where we live second child is not a choice but a necessity, you have one and you are constantly pressurized for the second. A family of three is never complete that’s what we all believe in, irrespective of the fact whether you can fend their needs or not. In another world one of my known who is well-educated just delivered a fourth child who luckily this time is a boy, she has three daughters earlier. And they wanted a boy, or else who would continue the family name.
  • His thought process is clear he knows where he wants to be in life and is paving the path, whether he reaches where he wants to go is besides the point but his zeal to do the same is charismatic. Come on my husband is 31 and he is still not sure what he wants from life.
  • He loves his wife, he explained that a couple together can achieve so much and that he does not believe in fighting. He said he always says sorry first in the fight. He says that she puts food on the plate for him when he is tired from work and has given him a beautiful daughter. “Madamji, she works too and still makes sure everybody is fed and all clothes ready for next day before she sleeps”, he says. In simple words he appreciates what his wife does for him, a quality very very rare in the Indian XY chromosome.
  • Importantly he is not a pervert, he does not look at you as if you are naked which many men do (not all, before my brother tells me that I being biased), until now I have not felt anything strange or inappropriate about him. He seems like a nice simple guy who wants to make a living and raise his family by providing to them all possible in his might.
  • And lastly he is a Bengali knows and quotes Tagore and sings beautifully, he always hums with the radio playing in his auto.

So lately I have been a fan of him, I hope that god listens to his prayers because he is really working hard to make it happen. I have however decided to help him financially if he needs it, this is the least I can do to help rather than donating money to temples where those pundits who are already full with everything take our money and fill their pockets further.