I had been to the Railway reservation counter on Sunday morning, and
on the way was accosted by a frustrated chap, with a small back pack. Looked
about 20ish. I had my earphones stuck deep in my ear, and if he spoke to me I
do not recollect, until he held my arm. I removed one of the pods, and glared
at him… He began in English:
“Brother, I am from Bangalore. I was brought here in search of a job, and
Oh no, not one of those again!
“I am seriously fucked up… I have no money, I have been staying on the bus
stand since the past four days. I don’t even have two bucks to pay for the
“I have spoken to my mother, but she cannot come here because of her legs.”
Right. So now, what do I do? I ask him: “This is all fine, but how do I trust
He pulls out a bus ticket from his pocket and shows me. “This is my bus
ticket. See it shows the bus registration number as BA-xxx-xxxx.”
Hmmm, looks like a genuine case. I decided to help him. Looked in the wallet
for the smallest denomination note greater than 10. Found a fifty. Gave
“No, no, I don’t want that…” he said with tears in his eyes.
“Keep it, you’ll need it. Next time, make good decisions in life.”
That was all I said to him, and left. I did not want to get involved anymore. It just was not necessary. I had no time, and I had helped in the best manner
possible to me at that time, or so I felt.
This is the second time this has happened with me. I don’t know if it’s
written somewhere on my face. How come people pick me for this?
The first was with some chap who had had his wallet stolen. He had been to
Esselworld (yeah!) and had no money to go back home. He wanted 22 bucks for
the bus fare. I gave him those, after he showed me the FIR he had filed. It
did look genuine.
Later dad had asked me to confirm if he genuinely had used my money to buy a
ticket. He even told me to buy the ticket myself next time I meet someone like
him, just so that the person does not dupe ten different people with the same
story and get many multiples of those 22 bucks.
People actually do this kind of philanthropy. I have seen many a times people
buying vada-pavs for urchins on railway platforms who claim they have not
eaten since xx days. It’s much better this way, since they do not actually get
money, which could be fraudanty used for other purposes.
Anyway, back to the chap in question. I happened to meet him today again,
while rushing to college. This time, he was with his mom. He recognised me,
and with great emotional display introduced me to his mom. She had that look
in her eyes, which only moms can have. The guy was pretty devastated as such,
and burst into tears yet again…
I really had no time for this, a test was scheduled and I was running late. I
would have loved to know more about him, and how he landed up in this
scenario, but that is not how it was meant to be. I namasted his mom, shook
hands with him, told him to be careful the next time, and parted.
Maybe if some of my readers know where such people can be redirected, please
leave a comment.
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