Sunday, July 22, 2012


Last night, I was on bed at 23:23 hours. It was a strange number when I saw my watch but not stranger then the day I had. In twenty minutes preceding that I had eaten Kadhai Paneer and Butter Naan sitting on white marble floor of my apartment.

I had left Ummeed at 10:30 PM last night. I have usually been coming at that time throughout this week and sleeping without dinner. When on one side, Delhi Government is making law against solo travel of women at night time, I am effortlessly breaking them on my black Activa. This week I have been at Ummeed in the morning at 5:45 AM and traveling back and forth to home whenever I could, just to take few power naps. Sitting on white marble floor of my apartment is then a rare delight.

Yesterday, a small child at Ummeed stole wallet from my handbag when I was playing carrom with three students of mine early afternoon. He took away 800 bucks and spent them somewhere. It was after tea that I realized my wallet was missing. My initial guess was that I had left it at a stationery shop in the morning and before doubting kids I checked there only to figure out the worse.So, I called for all meeting to announce that take the money just give my wallet with driving license and pan card back.As soon as the meeting was over, younger kids ran to help their Didi to find the wallet. Within no time, a child brought back my empty wallet from toilet. I was delighted and yet was sad that it was actually a child within my students who has done such thing.

I didnt want to react so I continued taking my classes. In middle of that class, S (let's call him that here) came over and gave me 120 bucks telling me that he had got it from pockets of the child who had given me empty wallet back He had doubted him when he so quickly had found out the wallet.

The managers and my co-fellow Chetan was managing the identified child while I patiently kept on teaching. Later Chetan told me that S has given a good treatment to make the child accept.

We might consider the case that S is a good kid who is morally and ethically right. I cannot disclose here what S all indulges in but this is certainly not the case.

S is not going to school since April after our repeated requests while all his friends have been going. He creates horrifying nuisances for which he has been punished several time. He does not want to talk about his parents. He says he started taking drugs after seeing his father indulging in them. He just cant hear his mother's name. He only stated that his mother has given the body injuries so clearly seen even today. He is around 16, so I asked him if ever he liked a girl. He said that he used to like one girl but he killed it inside him because he does not think someone can love a "Chichora" like him. He said once he is 18 and he has lived for two more years, he will commit suicide. I saw tears covering all his face.

What made this child deny himself of everything? Why he is not giving chance to education, love, and goodness? Why is he creating nuisance instead? Why then he cared to identify and disclose the child who stole my wallet?

 I told him in our meetings before that I never even considered him a chichora. He respects, never answer back and all other numerous things that I noticed. I told him of a vision that I saw for him a while ago that he is wearing a business suit driving a car to work while a lovely girl is there waiting back home, And I have a plan to meet them that evening at their home.

For every negative word he said about himself and people around him, I picked up all possible positivity inside me to turn around and give a little practical outlook. At the end, I told him that for next 15 days just do one good thing your heart always wanted to do.He said that was easy. I wanted it to be easy for him. For next two days, he cleaned his wardrobe and got up on time, took a bath and had breakfast. This was new because before that he never got up before lunch and didn't change clothes for 3 days.

All this bring us back to the question I had, why S gave a befitting treatment to the child who stole my wallet. What made him return back my 120 bucks when it was known that he also steals property of Ummeed.

I can't tell you how crazy Ummeed is and teaching these boys who practically have no authority figure, no parents surroundng them, lots of free resources with absolutely no responsibility. There are daily crises which makes me work more like a disciplinarian than a benevolent teacher. But I never had elicit such a response through my discipline than through a simple care and affection in that meeting with S.

I am guessing that S wanted her Didi's money back. He understood her pain and had felt connected. People have expected him of a bad behavior so he gave them that. I showed a little love and he valued it and guarded it.

How powerful love is! How powerful is to show care and actually mean it. I cared a little but he responded with so much more that it is inspiring.

I am daring to see the vision of a feast at my students' "own homes" with a lovely girl which God has sent for them.

Life is beautiful.