Do not be surprised if you happen to see a polio-affected person holding up his crutches and directing the traffic at Chinchpokli junction, Mumbai. Polio-affected Vinod Chavan has his happy hours when he helps people.
A resident of Vadala area in Mumbai, Chavan was merely seven months old when he was detected with polio and has always been dependent on crutches.
Presently, he works as a marketing professional to earn a living. As his job demands him to be on the field, he comes across many traffic situations and actively leads the solution. “I always carry a whistle with me. Being disabled, people tend to pave way for my vehicle. When I come across long queued traffic, I move ahead and pull out my whistle to further quicken the flow of traffic. The policemen often say, kyu itni takleef uthate ho (Why are you bothering yourself). But I feel happy doing it,” said Chavan.
Like in the movie ‘3 Idiots’, Chavan frequently leads ambulances or a hearses making way for them amidst the heavy Mumbai traffic.
“I have always felt strongly towards working for society. Initially, I didn’t have a clear path forward and lacked the desired courage. After joining Shree Pratishthan, an NGO, I received clarity and realised the significance of my contribution,” added Chavan.
Not only standing tirelessly and helping at traffic junctions excites him but also sweeping roads. Chavan , 31-years old, keeps himself occupied in a variety of activities like feeding and distributing clothes to poor and tribal people in an around the city.
Apart from socially inclined activities, Chavan inspires us to live and find joy in life against all odds. He regularly plays cricket and enjoys the festival of Navratri by dancing on the beats of Garba. “I have plenty Gujarati friends and easily connect with their culture. I dance on all nine days every year. It feels good to see many people visiting the Garba ground to watch me playing,” said an excited Chavan.
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The CSR Journal Team