August 24, 2007

The Man Who Moved a Mountain

Many of us don't have a clue about a village called Gahlaur. Most of us don't give a damn about a hill in Gaya district, Bihar and we really don't bother about who the hell Dashrath Manjhi was.

Dashrath Manjhi is a important because he spent 22 years of his life and carved a 1.5 km long, 22 feet wide and 30n feet high road through a hill to reduce the 19 km distance between his village Gahlaur and Wazirganj in Bihar. What can one say about a man who with just a hammer and chisel moved a mountain all by himself?

Why did he do that?

Why would anyone do such a crazy thing?

Dashrath's wife slipped and broke her ankle while she was carrying his food as he worked in a field beyond the hill. He knocked on every door that housed government officials to do something about the hill but when nothing came of it he decided to break the mountain alone. He was a common poor farmer but still sold his livestock to buy a hammer and undertook the almost impossible task.

22 years later Dashrath Manjhi had managed to do the impossible. He moved a mountain but nature had other plans. Before he could finish his herculean task he was diagnosed with cancer. The last few months of his life were spent battling cancer in a hospital in Delhi. The government finally woke up; they have decided to make a road and had wanted Dashrath to lay the foundation stone but he passed away. The Bihar CM Nitish Kumar announced a state funeral for Manjhi. They have also decided to set a hospital in his name in his village. The CM believes that Manjhi's story will continue to be the source of inspiration for many in the nation.
What was nice was that the state government bore the cost of treatment of Manjhi.

I don't know about the nation but since I read about him a year ago I have been thinking what would make a person, any person do such a thing...? Why would some one continue to live in abject poverty yet do something as nutty as moving the mountain?

We have it lucky perhaps...for our mountains are mostly in our minds...

0 Responses to “The Man Who Moved a Mountain”

Post a Comment