#BicycleAngels 161st beneficiary. (Wheelchair) “Just as in a war, no one can tell for sure the outcome.”

 

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161st beneficiary. (Wheelchair)

 

 

“Just as in a war, no one can tell for sure the outcome.”

 

 

Meghraj Kumar (7)

 

 

Meghraj has cerebral palsy. His speech and limbs are considerably impaired. Considerably weakened. It compels him to be rested against a wall or chair, as his muscles cannot support his own weight.

 

 

His father, Suresh, works as a mechanic, repairing pressure cookers, ovens. He works and resides at Dharavi.

 

Meghraj attends ADAPT school at Bandra west, where he receives very basic English education. And the necessary physiotherapy that will hopefully make his limbs more able in due course of time. Hopefully.

 

When we feel proud about something that we possess, be it a value or virtue, or a material object or an immovable asset, or even just a great idea, we can hold our head up in pride and keep it up there (until we learn humility.)

Meghraj can’t. Even if someday he is able to hold the smallest pencil between his fingers and write his mother’s name in Hindi or English, he will not be able to hold his head up with well-deserved pride. Most probably not. He cannot hold his neck in place due to the cerebral palsy condition. His head drops forward or sideways, in seconds, like a gentle straw that snaps in a fierce storm, if it is not held in place.

 

If Meghraj shifts his gaze to the floor, his upper body follows his gaze and drops forward in the direction of the floor.

How pain staking it must be for his mother, his family or caretaker, to feed him. Or even make him gulp down a half glass of water, I thought. Caretakers of special children must be the most patient beings.

 

His younger brother, around 3-4, is a great caretaker of Meghraj. If Meghraj’s head drops and his body consequently slops forward towards the floor, his younger brother rushes to pick up his elder brother’s upper body and make him rest against the wall. Since they do not have a wheelchair, they leave him in a corner against the wall, or then lying flat on the floor, most of the time. His elder brother has only just begun to lift him to take him around when he needs to leave the house, so he is becoming a good support for his parents. However, its time they got a wheelchair.

 

Meghraj is happiest in school. He likes to have children around him. If you visit their special school, you will see for yourself that these children smile and laugh as much, or more, than our ‘normal’ and privileged children

 

I asked Meghraj’s father, what his dream is for his son.

He told me, the doctor who attended to him long ago told him that children like his son may not survive beyond their teens. Meghraj is already 7. He feels his son may not be with them for long. Since that day, nothing in this world has mattered to his father more than seeing his son be happy. “I am going to give my son the best life that we possibly can provide him. My life is dedicated to his welfare. Even though no one can say for certain how long anyone will live.”

 

I recollect something my Dad had told me. He has served the Royal Indian Navy for 2 years and the Indian Army for 6 or 7. His commanding officer had told him, “In a war, no one can tell for sure the outcome.” Same for life, I thought.

 

Not just for Meghraj. We all have an unknown amount of limited hours to savour the gift of our senses and nature. So be kind to yourself, before you be kind to your loved ones.

My parents went away too. And only then I realised I should have been a little bit more patient and a bit more empathetic towards them. I learnt my lessons. Well, we all will. At the most able hands of the best teacher and PHD course ever – life.

 

 

Thank you to Sushrut Mankad, and our youngest donor Mann Joshi, 15, my cycling pal too, for donating this wheelchair to Meghraj. Mann saved money from his pocket-money for this. 🙂 When I was his age, I would save to buy toy dinki-cars.

 

Why is it important to help these special children? Many. One of them being, I believe, it is our ability to be able to move with ease from one spot to another which makes us reach our desired and varied destinations in life. That is why we donate bicycles and wheelchairs and walkers. Because one wheel at a time and one step at a time will help us journey more than a thousand miles. 🙂 Thanks to our donors.

 

 

 

Thank you Himanshu Shah for the discount on the wheelchair.

 

 

#RakeshAnandBakshi https://twitter.com/RakBak16

 

 

#BicycleAngels:

FB https://www.facebook.com/groups/309043432570135/

WordPress https://bicycleangels.wordpress.com/

 

 

Beneficiaries of help: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.357090647765413&type=1

 

 

#HumanityOurReligion #Empower #Empowerment #Charity #Donation #Livelihood #Bicycles #Inspiration #RakeshBakshi #ProudIndian #JaiHind #Humanize #Equalize #Spiritualize

 

Post MBA students from University of #Edinburgh Business School get to learn about us.

“Don’t do something just for good karma for next life, or this. Do it because you can!”
I was invited by #SEBI Securities Exchange Board of India’s education institute #NISM to talk to post MBA students from University of #Edinburgh Business School @Uoebusiness #IndiaTrek2016
about #BicycleAngels, #PlantAngels and #WaterTaxi. 🙂 (and our book #DirectorsDiaries)
“Don’t do something just for good karma for next life, or this. Do it because you can!”
Dean #MalcolmKirkup & #MohragDoig #MohragSharp Thank you for the #Quaich
Read more –  https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/directorsdiaries-soon-library-university-edinburgh-anand-bakshi?trk=prof-post

 

Regards

000 Doig Sharp email#RakeshAnandBakshi

Directors’ Diaries at FB: https://www.facebook.com/DirectorsDiaries
Directors’ Diaries at WordPress: https://rakbak16.wordpress.com/

Plant A Life – Plant Angels https://www.facebook.com/PlantAngels/

Bicycle Angels FB https://www.facebook.com/groups/309043432570135/  and

WordPress https://bicycleangels.wordpress.com/

Water Taxi, Water Angels https://www.facebook.com/groups/982882808439289/

 

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160th beneficiary. (Livelihood bicycle) “Corrupt politicians, corrupt administrators, corrupt humans. They make even the other good ten percent look so bad.” ;)

160 Harilal newspaper veg

 

160th beneficiary. (Livelihood bicycle)

 

“Corrupt politicians, corrupt administrators, corrupt humans. They make even the other good ten percent look so bad.” 😉

 

Harilal Yadav (35-40)

 

Newspaper and Vegetables vendor.

 

Harilal is from UP. He delivers newspapers in the morning at Bandra west. His father sells vegetables at Chimbai, and he helps him out at their make shift stall on a non-existent pavement.

 

Harilal has been a newspaper vendor since 20 years. He has two sons and two daughters, all four go to school; that is great, I thought.

 

I interviewed Harilal in Dec 2014. He said he will revert to me soon, and was even willing to contribute half the cost of a new bicycle. But he never turned up.

 

Last month, Harilal came to meet me. He said he did not come earlier, only because he could not save enough to contribute half the cost of a new bicycle. (2500)

But, a few months ago his old bicycle got stolen and he had to borrow a friend’s old bicycle for a few weeks. But now he has to return the borrowed bicycle, this week, and needs our assistance in purchasing a new one. Naturally, we agreed to lend him our little hands.

 

Bicycle theft, very common in Mumbai, I realised this after meeting nearly 140 such vendors.

 

When their bicycles get stolen, few of them call me for help. I also realised, they call me not to seek help, but just to share with me the bad news. I have always felt they are shy to ask for help. Especially because the bike was donated to them. It is we then who have to volunteer to help them. Can’t blame them for their loss. Shit happens! And their bicycle is to them what Michael Schumacher’s Ferrari means to him. After all, both earn their livelihood with the help of a vehicle.

 

Anyone who wants to experience how it feels losing a vehicle of livelihood, may see the 1948 Italian classic, The Bicycle Thief. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0040522/

 

Let me share with you more about the impact of their bicycles getting stolen.

The day they do not ride, they do not earn. They are, after all, daily wages workers. Even though most of them are their own master. And until they buy a new bicycle, they borrow one from a neighbour or friend who has an extra bicycle, for a few days, a few hours, until they can buy an old one or a new one.

 

Many of them, when their bicycle gets stolen, do not go to the cops. Because, they do not have the bill of purchase of their bicycle. And even if they did, they are not always treated with respect at Police Stations. The rules that apply to us, the privileged, do not apply to them, as they are treated mostly badly by those in extreme power.

I think, when some people in power perceive you to have no ‘backing’, they feel they can get away with bullying you. That is why it becomes important for the privileged to stand up for those weak.

 

Some of them do not want to buy a new bike, even if they can afford it. Many of them have refused to accept a new bicycle from us. Yes, Even those who we knew are too poor to contribute anything and we were willing to pay the entire cost of the bike for them. Because, new bicycles get stolen very often. Mostly by drug addicts, they say. So they rather suffer riding old bikes, they admit.

 

Some of them do not want to use new bicycles because of the nature of their profession. If they are tea sellers or coconut vendors, it is illegal to sell tea or coconuts on a bicycle. So the cops and the authorities ‘penalise’ them. If they are riding old used cycles, the penalty demanded is nominal or sometimes forgiven.

If they are riding a new bicycle, the person of authority believes the vendor must be making tons of money, and demands a high ‘penalty’ amount. The receipts issued for penalties paid are, ‘invisible’.

 

Now many of us know what I really mean by ‘penalise’. It often simply translates to, Ghoos. Chai Paani, Kharcha Paani. However, in defence of the law, I must say, if it is illegal to sell tea and coconuts on a bicycle, as they may pose danger to traffic or pedestrians, then yes the vendors must be fined. Officially of course, by producing a visible receipt, not ‘verbal’, for the fine collected. But, do they?

“Corrupt politicians, corrupt administrators, corrupt humans. They make even the other good ten percent look so bad.”

― Henry Kissinger

 

😉 However, all is not that bad, I assure you, in this world. 🙂 We still have angels amongst us. This bicycle was jointly donated to Harilal by Yogesh Shetty and Shraddha Desai Shah. Thank you. (Harilal Yadav contributed nearly half its cost.)

 

We want to leave you in a happy frame of mind reading this post, because its Earth Day on April 22. Do something good for our Mother Earth on April 22. Maybe, be a #PlantAngel. Plant a Tulsi. It gives us oxygen 24 hours. Give back to our Earth some of the oxygen we will have consumed in our lifetime: https://www.facebook.com/PlantAngels 🙂

 

Thank you to Kohinoor Cycles (http://kohinoorcyclestores.blogspot.com/) Siddharth Vora (https://www.facebook.com/siddharth.vora.58?fref=ts) for the good service.

 

#RakeshAnandBakshi https://twitter.com/RakBak16

 

#BicycleAngels:

FB https://www.facebook.com/groups/309043432570135/

WordPress https://bicycleangels.wordpress.com/

 

Beneficiaries of help: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.357090647765413&type=1

 

#HumanityOurReligion #Empower #Empowerment #Charity #Donation #Livelihood #Bicycles #Inspiration #RakeshBakshi #ProudIndian #JaiHind #Humanize #Equalize #Spiritualize

 

#PlantALife Meet #EvaJain – Our youngest #PlantAngel 😇❤️ 4 months young.

00000000 Mayura Eva

#EvaJain – Our youngest #PlantAngel 😇❤️ 4 months young.

“We have had our Tulsi plant for over a year now. It’s our favorite and most nurtured plant.
We have both emotional and religious sentiments attached to our Tulsi. Our tulsi brings happiness and positivity in our lives 🙂 ”
– #MayuraJain #VivekJain #EvaJain

Mayura Jain Eva Jain Vivek Jain
——————–/——

(Be a #PlantAngel, SEND US YOUR SELFIE. 🙂

By growing a Tulsi (Basil) or the ‘money’ plant at home, (a potted plant, since you may not have access to growing it outdoors) you can give back to our mother, Earth, some of her oxygen that you will have consumed in your life time.

Tulsi, and the ‘money’ plant, are amongst the few plants that give oxygen nearly 24 hours. 🙂

Send us your Selfie with your potted plant or tree to post, and share with us your story too: Who you are, and why is your plant important to you.
Email it to rakbak16@gmail.com
or post it directly on our Page:
Plant A Life – Plant Angels https://www.facebook.com/PlantAngels/
and become #PlantAngels #OxygenAngels 🙂

By sharing with us your selfie and your reason, you may inspire others too to pay their gratitude to our mother, Earth. 🙂

Moreover, nurturing a plant teaches us we too need to strengthen our own roots.

#RakeshAnandBakshi
@ #PlantALife )

 

#PlantALife #PlantAngels Shraddha Desai Shah. We can return some of the oxygen we use in our lifetime, back to our mother, Earth.

Shraddha Shah

Shraddha Desai Shah. ‪#‎PlantAngel‬ ‪#‎OxygenAngel‬

We can return some of the oxygen we use in our lifetime, back to our mother, Earth; if we grow one Tulsi, (Basil) or any other plant (the ‘money’ plant …. ) that releases oxygen twenty four hours.

Be an #OxygenAngel a #PlantAngel. SEND US YOUR SELFIE… Grow a Tulsi (Basil) or the ‘money’ plant at home (a potted plant, since you may not have access to growing it outdoors) and give back to our mother, Earth, some of her oxygen you will have consumed in your life time.

Send us your Selfie with your potted plant to blog and share with us your story too, who you are and why is this important to you. (email – rakbak16@gmail.com)
Or post it on our Page directly: https://www.facebook.com/PlantAngels

‪#‎RakeshAnandBakshi‬ ‪#‎PlantALife‬ #PlantAngel ‪#‎PlantAngels‬ #OxygenAngel‪#‎OxygenAngels‬

 

 

 

 

Live interview today at 2 pm to 3 pm of myself and a few beneficiaries of‪#‎BicycleAngels‬ and a donor, on the mobile app ‪#‎Fame‬.

Live interview today at 2 pm to 3 pm of myself and a few beneficiaries of‪#‎BicycleAngels‬ and a donor, on the mobile app ‪#‎Fame‬.

Download the #Fame app on

your phones if you would like to watch our live chat with the #Fame host Aaditya Vaze

‪#‎RakeshAnandBakshi‬

159th beneficiary. (Wheelchair) – Sometimes a candle wishes the wind blow her away before extinguishing her flame that defines her.

159 WC CP Zuber

159th beneficiary. (Wheelchair for CP, Spastics, child.)

“Sometimes a candle wishes the wind blow her away before extinguishing her flame that defines her.”


Zubair Shaikh (18 -21, I think)
Son of Saida Shaikh, Zubair suffers from Cerebral Palsy. Sadia said to me, “Zubair’s father does not work. : ( Many years ago, 1991-92, Zubair’s father began a business, but suffered loses. He never recovered thereafter. Neither financially, nor emotionally. He rarely leaves his house, and prefers the shadows.” Saida went quite.
In a flash I remembered a moment from my recent past. I was interviewing director Farah Khan (I love her!) for our book, Directors’ Diaries – The Road to Their First Film. Farah told me, that her father (a very well to do film producer) suffered a huge loss when his most ambitious production flopped at the box office, sometime in 1970s.
Farah was a child, then. She continued, “….. even our Chevrolet car got sold too. I did not know what becoming ‘kangaal’, bankruptcy, means.’, When my Gramaphone got sold, which I would hear daily and dance to Hindi songs, I found out what even ‘poor’ means. (Pauses) My mother took up a job. (So its my mother from whom I learnt a woman must be financially independent.) My dad did not have income. He rented our living room/hall to his friends for card games. To earn a tiny fee of Rs 5 per player from this service and the space he provided. My father must have earned around Rs 30–40 a day from this activity at home. That is all the money we had to run our home, our lives. (Pauses) People would play cards in our house from almost 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. (Pauses) Since we had no car now, I began to go to school by BEST bus. But, (pauses) Papa refused to travel by BEST bus. He stayed home all the while. (Pauses) Decades later after I became successful, I realized why. What Papa must have gone through, why someone like him did not leave his home thereafter nor want to be seen in public transport.” Then the normally talkative Farah went quite. Very quite.
It was raining when I was interviewing her, seated in her 42nd floor house which was touching the monsoon clouds. In that silent moment, I looked out. I could not hear the rain, even though it was pouring outside. It was as dark outside as it was inside at that gloomy moment in her life.
Saida is bringing up her challenged son Zubair nearly like a single mother. She sells odd things now and then, including artificial jewellery, to make ends meet. She is the sole bread winner. Yet finds the energy and time to look after his every need, including taking him to the toilet. Because she has a challenged son who constant care needs her to remain close at hand, she has been running pillar to post since many years now to get permission from the BMC to set up a small shop outside her house. So that she can earn a regular livelihood yet remain very close to her precious special Zubair. Such love and grit!
This awesome woman, Saida, seated in front of me, I assume she may be hardly 4 to 5 feet. But when she spoke to me every word weighed laden with determination for his wellbeing. Her courage and grit brining up a spastics child without a regular income towered over me. I felt I am seated in front of the mighty Kutub Minar, which stands invincible against unfriendly and potentially-humiliating winds at a great height of 72.5 meters. She sat in front of me as firm as the iron tower, its width of 14.32 meters at its base. Her energy level equated to the popcorn that erupts joyfully out of the bowl when the corn hits the right temperature, in my microwave oven, before we friends settle down sharing them watching a movie at home.
I asked Saida, “What is your ambition for Zubair? What would you wish for, if God, Allah, Bhagwan were to grant you one wish, oneiracle?” Saida said, “It is challenging to bring up Zubair. A child bound to a wheelchair or a walker. My only prayer is (she looked up towards the sky) ‘Please take him away before you take me away. If I die first, there is no one in this world who can look after Zubair, like I do. God, please please please keep me alive till Zubair lives. Or then call him to you only before you call me.”
As I waked away from mother and son, giving them a brand new wheelchair donated by our donor, I thought, ‘Sometimes a candle wishes the wind blow her away before extinguishing her flame that defines her.’
This wheelchair for Zubair has been donated to him in the fond memory of Late Dr Sudhir Raikar of Winston Salem. His beloved wife, Neeta, has since moved to Atlanta close to her daughter, and she was very happy at this tiny opportunity to do something for someone the far less fortunate. Thank you Neeta Raikar, and Girish Thakar for this opportunity you offered Mrs Neeta Raikar through us.#RakeshAnandBakshi https://twitter.com/RakBak16
#BicycleAngels:FB https://www.facebook.com/groups/309043432570135/WordPress https://bicycleangels.wordpress.com/
Beneficiaries of help: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.357090647765413&type=1
#HumanityOurReligion #Empower #Empowerment #Charity #Donation #Livelihood #Bicycles #Inspiration #RakeshBakshi #ProudIndian #JaiHind #Humanize #Equalize #Spiritualize