India is a land which has been associated with myths, legends and magic back through time. Every single corner of the country, it appears, has some mythical saga to account for. However, Indian myths aren’t what we are going to discuss about now. The next few lines are dedicated solely and exclusively to stories which, though very much rooted in real life, could give a fairy take run for its money. These are the real life tales of average Indian citizens who have found themselves, willing or unwillingly in exceptional circumstances.
From rags to riches-The story of Sarvatia Devi
She is a beggar and she chooses as well. So, if you thought being a beggar deprives people of basic amenities, then time to change those opinions. And to find out why exactly we are saying so, visit the Darbhanga Kalibari area in Patna.
Sarvatia Devi, a woman in her early forties, squats near the lane everyday begging for alms. And while a majority of us, driven to tears by the lady’s raggedy clothes deposit some alms into her bag, Sarvatia Devi, let us inform you, has made a fortune out of them. She has two insurance policies for which the lady pays a premium of Rs. 36,000 annually.
After a day’s begging, she even returns home, reportedly to a plush den. Besides getting her daughter married off, she has been on pilgrimages to a number of holy places in India- all that merely by begging. Is that what you would call pure luck, eh?
Scaling new heights- The story of Malli Mastan Babu
From Nellore to the Andes, Malli Mastan Babu has scaled heights all the way. The thirty seven year old is reportedly the only Indian ever to have covered, manned and conquered the tallest peaks of the Andes. Though related to this feat in some way, Babu has actually set record for a different reason- he has gone down the pages of history (and the Guinness book of world records) for having climbed the 7 Andes summits in just 172 days.
The mountaineer, who hails from a farming family in Nellore, has already scaled the Aconcagua in the Argentine side thrice. He has also climbed the Sajama in Bolivia, the Huascaran in Peru, Chimborazo in Ecuador and Ojos Del Salado in Chile. The journey from Nellore to the Andes has, however, been a pretty long one. Babu, an IIT Kharagpur alumni had to learn Spanish and make friends with the local crowd before setting off on the Andes spree.
The old man and the tattoos- The story of Rishi
Forget Angelina Jolie, move over David Beckham, for Rishi, a 70 year old Delhite, now beats them all by having the highest number of flag tattoos on his back. Rishi is covered in 305 national flags, 165 mini flags, 185 maps and 2,985 characters. In case you are wondering has the man got space left on his body for more tattoos, let us inform that he will not “flag” himself again even if there is some. The reason? his long-suffering wife Bimla.
Rishi’s better half, it appeared, had threatened to leave him if he got any more tattooed flags. Apart from the tattoos, the man in question has several other records to his credit. For one, he has created the biggest will in the world (489 pages) and last but not the least, Rishi holds the record for covering the longest route in a Pizza delivery trip. He went all the way to San Francisco from Delhi to get the Pizza delivered. Rishi’s is a family which also appears to have been bitten by the “record” bug. His brother-in-law, we hear, is creating the tallest sugar cube in the world!
Marital bliss- The story of Ziona Chana
Ziona Chana’s family can put Ekta Kapoor to shame and give Kauravas a run for their money. What exactly has he done to draw such accolades? Chana, a native of Mizoram, has apparently married 39 women with whom he has had 94 children, 14 daughters-in-law and 33 grand children!
And now more from Chana’s personal profile- While his oldest wife is 71 now, the youngest is only 31. The household has been arranged in such a way that the wives sleep in dormitories, with the youngest among them sleeping closest to Chana. The man who first entered the wedding aisle at the age of seventeen, had even tied the nuptial knot ten times in a year on one instance.
The household, we hear, is organized with a near military discipline. So, the question is, what makes so many women go gaga over Chana? “He is the most handsome person in the village,” says Rukmini, one of Chana’s wives. All said and done, Chana’s story makes us wonder about the exact geographical reach traversed by the family planning program of our Government.
Wonder kid- The story of K.Vishalini
K. Vishalini has just returned home from an international seminar at the National Institute of Technology, Karnataka. Such invitations are actually quiet routine for her these days. She visits engineering colleges often, delivering smart lectures to crowds of B.Tech and B.E students. While at the outset, this may sound like the profile of a seasoned research scholar or academician, the person we are talking about here is an 11 year old.
Blessed with an exceptional IQ, Vishalini can solve complex IT problems at the drop of a hat. Three hours a day is all she devotes to computers. The rest is spent watching cartoons, or riding bicycles. While the child has already received invitations from prestigious engineering colleges to be a part of their student base, her parents are not prepared to see their girl all grown up yet. Hence, Vishalini, the girl with an IQ around 225, has to wait another three years before entering through the Engineering college gates.