Wednesday, April 12, 2006

I always wanted to write about this man.....

I always wanted to write about this man, but I was always out of words to describe him and his life. It is just because there was nothing extraordinary about him. He was just an ordinary man- simple, honest, down to earth, very complacent, never aspired for anything in life, he was not a politician, not a bureaucrat, not an intellectual of sort..... He was a good husband, good father, good friend, good neighbour etc. etc.

He came from a remote village. He was the last among 5 children born sometime during thirties. His was not a rich family- had a few acres of dryland and may be considered a marginal farmer's family. None of them went to school except this man who studied up to 10th standard or SSLC and that changed the course of his whole family. He went to school may be because he was lazy to do agricultural activities or may be he liked to study, no one knows.

From his village Mandikal he moved to his brother's house to Arakeri village to study in high school. His brother had married a girl from Arakeri and had moved there. He daily walked 8-10 kms to school. After completing his 10th standard he did not join any college- may be because no asked him to or no one supported him financially. He started to look for jobs here and there. Though unemployed he married an woman from neighbouring village Siddaghatta. Before he could get an employment he had become a father. First baby boy was stillborn. Second also was a baby boy. He desperately wanted an employment, His wife stayed in her parents house. They were quite rich and could afford to keep her as long as she wished.

At last he found a job, but he was asked to deposit Rs.500-00. He was not so rich to afford Rs.500-00 but he couldnot afford to lose this oppurtunity. He literally cried sitting on a pavement. Went to his wife and expressed his helplessness. She consoled him and gave her gold chain and asked him to sell it or pawn it for the money. He pawned the gold chain with his own elder brother who lent him Rs.500-00 which helped him to get the job. (He never got that gold chain back though money was returned is a different matter).

He moved to the town with his family. Another son was born. Since they were in town, now they could afford education to their children. Gradually through years he bought a site and constructed a house. Meanwhile he adopted two more kids (one boy and one girl) and helped them to get education. They stayed with his own children, like his own children. At a point of time there were 3-4 additional students in his house who were children of relatives who stayed in his house as they were from villages and couldnot afford to travel everyday to schools or colleges of the town.

He never knew the term `luxury'. He was happy and contented. He had given his children best education he could afford. Both his sons were well settled with their jobs. Elder son was with them and his younger son at Bangalore. He always resented wastage of any sort. He used to repair his own clothes, used a bicycle to travel to his office. Once he bought a Jawa motorbike but later sold it. During his last days he bought a Luna and later a TVS 50 moped. That was his fleet of vehicles.

He was always restless, looking for something to fiddle. He never kept quiet. After retirement from the job he used to work as an accountant- a part time job. He said, it was not for the money, but it kept him engaged.

He was diabetic, also had hypertension. He used to smoke heavily but had stopped completely when Doctor had warned him strictly.

His children were happily married with their own children. Both owned cars which his father never even dreamed of. They had their own houses. His younger son thought about his father many a times, wondered many a times about the time his father came out of the village in search of a job and landed in town. That is the moment which changed the course of the whole family. If he had never ventured out of village, probably his wife and children too would have ended up staying in the village without education and doing agriculture as their cousins are still doing. Now they view this man and his family with envy.

His children many a times think about their past and their present position. Now they can afford still better education to their children which their cousins at the village cannot even dream of.

One night he woke up with breathlessness. His wife and son also woke when he was moving around in the house. He asked for water and drank it. His wife and son insisted on visiting a hospital. He was reluctant, but later agreed. Sat on his son's bike and both went to Hospital. He was taken to the ward on a wheelchair. BP was taken which was quite high. Doctor wanted to do ECG. His wife was standing beside him. He held her hand and closed his eyes. He was 68.

He was Jurappa who later changed his name to Janardhana and I am his son.


jo said...

Fr the first paragraph itself i knew u r talking abt ur father...and add that u r his youngest son...!!!

jo said...

but Balu...ur sister??

Jacob Matthan said...

Thank you for sharing this. It is not a story but life!

Dr.J.Balakrishna said...

My sister is an adopted child

Ansar said...

"Really a great father who stood on his own without any expectations in life"