Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Stomach that moulds life!

Rajan was getting ready for school, he was looking forward to it. The day before it had been a hard day for him, masterji had not been very kind....not kind enough to let go of his incorrect sums...maths was always a mystery to him, but he took it up as a challenge, a challenge to do his best to stay in school as long as possible, since his stomach fought a tough battle of patience and longing for the sumptuous mid day meal that was distributed in school everyday.
All his friends, kalu, meera, kabir, junaid, suresh, all of them had joined school for the same reason.
The lessons on the history of the nation did interest them, the various stories of the great warriers came as a boost for their not so easy life...Like brave warriers they too fought with their hunger and celebrated their victory when the mid day meal was served.
The dinners and breakfast at home were a rare sight, their mothers got their meals in the houses they worked for and sometimes saved a little for their kids and spouse and their fathers were labourers working day and night with a cloth tied to their stomach to stop the hunger pangs...they too were lucky to be given something to eat when the owner felt generous enough....life was not a bed of roses for Rajan and his friends, coming from poor families, their happiness rested in the school corridors.
It was late in the afternoon, Rajan had not had anything to eat since day before, he was extremely hungry and was waiting for the midday meals to be served...the wait got longer but there was no sign of the food lorry.
Time passed......The break got over..... masterji came in the class and started a new lesson.....weakened by his hunger, Rajan, with innocent drooping eyes asked his teacher...masterji aren't we getting food today?"
Masterji looked at him, and a shadow of sadness covered his face...no my boy didn't you hear the news.....the cooked meal program has been disrupted due to shortage of food grains, there are some problems going on. Rajan cried out, " what problems masterji!"...his teacher had a worried look , "you won't understand kid, the HRD ministry and the Department of Food and Public Distribution are locked in a payment spat...."
Rajan," no masterji, I understand it well..." those people are unable to understand my hunger!!!!"
With tears in his eyes Rajan started flipping the pages of his notebook....food was the reason why his father had allowed him to study and food would be the reason for him to drop out of school to earn his bread....
After all what would alphabets do if one doesn't have the strength to understand them????????

16 comments:

Darril said...

Its true Sana.. It happens and still exists in most of the places in India.. seeing these things atleast we should realize that we should be thankful to god..

Jayant Post said...

a very heart-rending reality... a truth that seems like fairy tales to us... sana, u really did a good work by covering this story... have no more words to say... really touched and really feel bad for the underprivileged... :(

A New Beginning said...

Yes Darril, there is so much that we should thank God for, we got all that we needed without any worries....its sad to see people who don't ..I hope the govt. doesnt shut the midday meal program...


Jayant I read it somewhere that theres a shortage of wheat grains and therefore they might dicontinue the program...it was very shocking coz I have a govt school right opposite my place and I get to see the happy faces when the midday meal is served...I just hope it continues...kids do need good food...

Whirlwind said...

Very true. Pity that the country is still subjected to such appaling conditions.

Kiran said...

touching sana.

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Sana:)

You are absolutely right.The basic necessity for man is food. What is the point in having everything in life if there is no food to eat.It is even said that LOVE GOES OUT OF THE WINDOW IF THERE IS NO FOOD TO EAT.

The mid day meal program has done a lot of good for poor children.At least they go to school for the sake of food,if not to study.

Actually I met a boy from Tamilnadu working in a way side restaurant.He is sixteen years old.He has studied up to seventh standard but since his parents can't afford to pay his fees, he has started working.This is child labour. It is rampant in India.

There are innumerable children who start working or begging from a very young age because their parents can't feed them.This is a sorry state of affairs. Why should people have children if they can't feed them?Again illiteracy is the root cause of this problem.

As long as illiteracy is prevalent in India, there will be many children who will go without food.They work long hours for a pittance,they contract diseases due to malnutrition,some of them beg,some become robbers and cheats.

Mid day meal program has done a lot of good.But as you pointed out sometimes even this program can go wrong.

Very interesting photos and excellent information.

Have a nice day Sana:)
Joseph

Margaret Cloud said...

This was such a sad story, we should give thanks for our daily bread. Thank you for coming by.

lostworld said...

Where does the whole cycle end is hard to say. I mean, when they pass laws such as 'right to education' it is all very good. But only a healthy body can act as fuel for a healthy mind. I've noticed Karnataka Govt initiate this mid-day meal scheme for all underprivileged kids. A truly noble deed.

A New Beginning said...

Indeed Shwetha!

Its a real life situation Kiran, a large part of our society faces such situations...

Yes Mr. Joseph the program has done a lot, hope it continues....

Margaret, we have a lot to thank for...we are truely blessed!

Yup Lost world its a noble deed, but lately I heard they are having some problem...hope everything gets back to normal!!

Mustaf said...

No words...we should just consider ourselves lucky to have full meals two times a day and a place to sleep at night!! And we complain of so many don't haves!!

Readers Dais said...

Hi!

That was a nice & relevant thoughtful post from you, well written,
ive heard of a myth relating lord shiva & parvathy debating whether hunger or love for children stands first, in which its proved hunger does stand above, hope u know the story...
good post from u :)

Ellen said...

Sometimes these things cannot be just left to the govt to manage. Often they get derailed by too much politicking. Maybe some non-government agencies -- or some private charity organizations -- or some religious community can fill in the gap... until the govt is able to sort out their silliness. Or maybe a few average normal citizens who can find it in their generous hearts to spare a few and pool these together to create a general food resource to feed the children. So much like a Soup Kitchen for the poor. Maybe it's just a temporary solution but still would mean so much to the kids.

I hope somebody out there catches this idea. Bless you!

Good job with this post, Sana, for highlighting the need. May the flame you have just lit spread far and wide.

SindhuBhairavi said...

:(:(:( i have a heavy hearttt :(

Anya said...

So nice to read more about your country,
its for me VERY interesting !!!
This story is very touching
it makes me sad :(
Thanks for sharing Sana ...

A New Beginning said...

Very True Mustaf!

Thanks for telling me about it Readers dais, I love to gain knowledge about things that can be related to our life :)

Very True Ellen, effort should come from different fields...its our world after all...we've got to take it towards betterment!

Don't be sad Sindhu, we need to fight with such situations in our own small way..isnt it:)

Hey Anya, Hope to give you more updates and describe beautiful things about my country aswell...it's beautiful in the true sense of the word with varied cultures..mingled into a unified whole :)

kavita said...

Very touching,a painful reality for many children out there.I am going to tell this story to my kids tonight ...i hope they learn to appreciate what they have - get inspired to be responsible citizen and work for a better India in coming days.

Very nice post.Thanks.