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” 50 Rupay “, said the AutoRickshaw Driver,when I inquired for the fare for Bus Stand.
No sooner had I boarded the Auto,than it started drifting along the dusty lanes of the city. It was a cold winter morning. The Early Morning fog had populated the Roads,hence diminishing the visibility to mere few metres.
I tell you,the auto wale Bhaiyya was really good at driving across the foggy pathways,managing every vehicle in a manner similar to the NFS cars along some snow covered mountaneous tracks.
” Gaadi aapki apni hai Bhaiyya “,I inquired to know whether he was the owner, brave enough to perform such stunts.
” Arrrey Nahi Bhaiiiyaa Kahaan se Apnaaa ,Kiraaye pe lewat hainn,
Lekin sochaat hain ki ek Din Apnaa bhi le lewenge”, answered Bhaiyya where he tried to convince me,that He was confident and determined of Realizing his dream of Owning his own vehicle!
” Haan Haan Kyu nahi, Bilkul! Kahaan ke ho Bhaaiiya”, I kept on Asking so as to make the Cold atmosphere a bit warm by thinking about things,other than the cold.
” Bihar se hain”
“Kon Zilaa Baa!!”, I asked in local dialect of Bihar, demonstrating a small amount of emotional quotient.
” Danapur “, he answered with an extra vigour, his voice turning nostalgic.
” Katnaa Kiraayaa Lewat hain Bhaiyya”, I asked about the fixed sum he had to pay to the owner of the AutoRickshaw.
” 300 Rupyaa Lewat hain Bhaiyya, upar se CNG hame hi Bharwaani padat hain”, he added.
He also narrated that once while he was driving at Night,two beggars boarded,and were talking, that they had managed to collect 1000 Rupees. He exclaimed the fact that, in course of Begging at the signals, and Doing Relatively No Work,as compared to his work. Well, his justification was true to some extent. However,cannot be generalised. Sometimes Experiences are enough to teach us a lot more about every happening around us.
300 Bucks a day plus his savings. 16 hrs of Journey on cold and hot days.
Unknown passangers. Unknown Talks.
All these combined together defined his life.
There are lot more things that the Autowallahs experience.
But, the ultimate reality, beyond all this is the Struggle for Life, sustaining themselves in one of most expensive cities.
I say, Its not a cakewalk!
A dream of owning his own AutoRickshaw, and Day and Night Striving to achieve the same. To turn his dream into reality.
At times,conversations with the grass root people help you to project yourself better, towards Life and People.
Afterall,It says much, when you hear it from others!