Everyday while going to office, I cross a foot over bridge. There are a few beggars whom I see daily, sitting on the stairs.
When I step on to the staircase, the old man stretches out his hand in front of me. I hand over a coin to him and proceed. The next old woman looks at me with expectations, hands stretched out. I hesitatingly drop another coin. Then on the other set of staircase, the other old man looks at me..this time I pretend not seeing him and walk away faster..
It happens everyday.
It takes me around 4 minutes to walk from that bridge to reach office. That 4 minute interval is the most restless period my day. I try to tell you why..
When I look at the old shriveled bodies of those beggars, something hits me hard inside. In a moment, a heavy gush of thoughts floods my mind. This poor old man must have children, do they know that their father is begging like this on roads..do they care at all.. this man must have had hay days in his life, does he relish his past.. I feel pity for them..and some kind of guilt over takes me..
The other day, I saw the old beggar smoking..and a bundle of cigarettes in his pocket. I was shocked a little. Does this man sit here begging whole day for buying cigarettes! And at this age, so close to the end, he still indulges in pleasure? ( though this thought is biased I know)..
When I see them everyday, some where in my heart, I feel hopeless. Will it ever be possible to uproot poverty from our country....?Can anything concrete ever be done?
Do I do anything good by giving a few coins daily? I don't mind spending hundreds on a meal, but I do mind giving a 10-rupee note to a woman, who might not have had a full meal for days?
I am sorry I am unable to express what exactly goes on in my mind in those 4 minutes.
The moment I enter office, everything vanishes. And I am the same self again.