How I landed up in Delhi
After leaving PRADAN on 30th June 2004, I went to my parents at Rewa, my home town, to spend some time with my family. It was also a necessary break for me to get a break to relax, rest and recuperate. I spent about 15 days in home, talking to my ailing grandfather, who, in many ways, is my ideal in life. I also discussed future with my parents, who were not very convinced with my leaving PRADAN without having another offer in my hands. May be they were feeling insecure, and to some extent even I was, but one thing was sure in my mind; I could have stayed in PRADAN looking for a job, biding my time, but that would have been a treachery, not just with PRADAN, but more importantly with the community, as healthwise I was no more in shape to do justice to my work in PRADAN. I told my parents that I have got enough savings to sail me through my days of unemployment, and besides, we still have our land of 11.5 acres in the outskirts of Rewa. I told them what I had told one of my colleagues in PRADAN- “Thanks to PRADAN, I know how to cultivate soyabean and wheat. I have some idea of cultivating vegetable as well. So, if I don’t get a job in 2-3 months, I would simply come back and become a farmer in my home.” I knew it was easier said than done, and was also confident about getting a job in Delhi.
With this background, I landed up in Delhi in the third week of July. Madhukar, who was with me in PRADAN and was in fact my room partner there, had reached Delhi a few days earlier after quitting PRADAN to pursue higher studies (read MBA). He had already taken a house in Khirkee Extension (Malviya Nagar) with help of Cchavvi and Haresh (ex-apprentices in PRADAN, Sironj).
A Party Going on?
It is a cultural shock when a guy like me hailing from a small town and having lived in rural areas comes to Delhi. For days all I kept doing was to compare this life with that life. I and Madhukar used to discuss about our days in PRADAN and how things are here in that comparison. Our flat was in one of the dirty alleys in Khirkee and fortunately there was a balcony in which we would stand in the mornings. Here we came to know that by no means is the number of poor less in Delhi, no matter how insensitively we try to push this issue under the carpet.
A Dirty Secret of the National Capital
“About 10% a month”- the guy said coolly.
My jaws dropped. 10% a month is a whopping 120% annual rate of interest!!!
“How do you make sure that your money comes back?” -I asked.
“Ha ha ha! Do you think any of these poor rascals have guts to embezzle MY money?”- said the gentleman, menacingly.
Now you know how money earns more money in a materialistic system like ours!