"Where there is a will, there is a way” goes a popular saying. True to this adage, there is an opportunity waiting for you, even if one in a million. Here is a fine example of how things turn out in your favour if you are sincere to your mission.
If you pass through the bridge of Yamuna Bank Metro station, you will hear a feeble but rhymic sound of recitation by children, sometimes the sound gets louder and clearer, especially when there is calm in the surroundings, of tinytots chanting alphabet.
You might think the source of the sound is a nearby school... any kind of school. But it is not... neither a government school not a private one. It's, in fact, an open school run by a shopkeeper, Rajkumar Sharma, since 2006 for the children belonging to the underprivileged sections of the society.
We chanced upon speaking to the Good Samaritan on Friday evening when the Oil and Natural gas corporation (ONGC) distributed warm clothes, books and stationery among the children under its CSR activity. He is known as “Education Man”, a sobriquet he earned through the selfless service he has rendered to the cause of education.
Recounting about his journey, Rajkumar said, "I started the open school with just three children. Now, the strength has crossed the 200 mark. I'm happy with the growth of the school.”
As regards his students, he says most of his students are children of migrant labourers. Their parents work at various on-going construction sites of the Metro.
As for the teachers, apart from him, there are a few youngsters who have volunteered to teach the children.
On being asked about the remuneration for his service and those who are associated with him in his mission, he said, “It's a labour of love. Neither I nor my associates are doing it for any personal gain, but giving the society its due.”
“We don't need money to educate the children,” he asserted adding, everyone can come here and share his/her knowledge and expertise with the deprived children.
Rajkumar Sharma's lonely crusade is bearing fruits. Support for his school is pouring in from all quarters slowly but steadily. Locals are coming forward to help him in his mission with books, copies, pencil, rubber and other stationery.