Many of us get worried or paranoid with basic hurdles of life. We start cursing our luck or believing how life has been unfair only with us. However, some stories are so inspiring when individuals emerge victorious from their challenges, and this is something we must remember and adopt, if we ever get into such difficult situations in life.
Nagesh Kale, 27, an auto-driver from Pune lost both his legs in 2013 in a train accident. Instead of losing hopes, sitting idle and not doing anything with his life, Nagesh was inclined to live his life with same self respect and dignity. Even after seven years to the mishap, the only thing that hasn’t changed in Nagesh’s life is his determination to get back on his feet.
Kale hails from a financially challenged family background and had to drop out from school after Class 8. He also lost the only earning member, and his father in 2011. Things became difficult for the young man since then. He says,
I had to drop out of school after class 8 because of my family’s financial condition. Eventually, I purchased an auto-rickshaw with the help of some relatives and started earning. After my father passed away in 2011, my brothers and I took responsibility for taking care of each other and our mother.
Nagesh and his bother were the only earning members since then. It was a challenging time for him, but he
managed to earn a decent amount. The young man also had plans to get married and settle down. However, life was not as easy, as Nagesh who was 20-years of age, met with a train accident in 2013.
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The accident happened when Nagesh was returning to Pune after visiting a friend in Mumbai. He narrates the incident and says,
It was crowded, and someone pushed me from behind while they were getting off the train, so I fell down, just as the train started moving. I was rushed to the hospital, but there was very little that the doctors could do, and my legs had to be amputated.
Thereafter, life took a different turn and all plans the young man had were shattered. He says,
I was very disheartened and wondered if there was any point in going on.
Nonetheless, Nagesh got tremendous support from his family, which made him regain his physical and mental strength again. He quotes,
My family stood by me, and helped me get better.
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Nagesh’s elder brother, Ankush, who now works as a software engineer said how during this time, they also looked for various sources that could help his younger brother to stand on his feet, literally! With the hope of getting back to normalcy at that time, Ankush approached someone who used to make prosthetic legs in Pune. Quoting to The Better India, Ankush said,
The doctor treating him had referred us to the prosthetic maker, and we managed to get prosthetic legs worth Rs. 2.5 lakh for him. But, since his amputation was above the knee, he said that the prosthetics added extra pressure to his legs.
Ankush also said that Nagesh feels more comfortable with a wooden board fitted with wheels, and even today, he uses the same.
A New Start & New Life
Nagesh indeed has a strong determination, alongwith strong family support behind him. With the assistance of his family, he slowly started re-establishing his life. After only three months of his accident, he started earning again. He says,
I knew I could not use the leg brakes, so I spoke to a local mechanic, and for Rs. 2000 I got the modifications done. The brake wire had to be rewired from the foot to the handlebar.
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Even after lifting himself up, he could still not muster the confidence he needed to get back to life, as the accident has affected his confidence immensely. After this, his friends stepped in to help him regain his conviction again. Nagesh quotes,
We would go on short rides every day. One of them would sit with me or behind and help me get into the auto, and out. In 6 months, I gained the confidence I needed and started driving around by myself. Now, my upper body is extremely strong, and I can lift myself on an off the auto.
Archana, who joined the list of encouraging people in Nagesh’s life, also partnered with him in his life journey. Nagesh found a soulful connection in her and the two went on to wed in 2015.
How Has Pandemic Affected Nagesh?
While COVID has impacted many lives, the same has also affected the auto driver. He says,
Before the lockdown was announced, I would earn approximately Rs. 1000 every day. Now, it has dropped to Rs. 200 per day, and then there are days when I don’t earn a single penny. But, I am hopeful that things will get better.
I have survived a crisis before, and am confident that I will do so again.
According to Nagesh, the times are tough but he’ll still get back. His determination and support from his family and friends had made him pass through some extremely difficult times. And hence, he says he will remain positive until the end. He concludes,
I want to work hard to give my family a comfortable life. I also wish to save up money to open a driving school for the differently-abled someday.
My current situation is horrible, but this does not break my spirit. Most certainly, suicide isn’t an option. We are born only once, and even though the situation is tough, I will not give up.
Such stories are extremely inspiring especially for many men and their families who follow us, and are fighting false cases — whenever you think its the end……remember this story!
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