The final of a sort: A day within the lifetime of Krishna Kumar, the typist reverse Lucknow GPO

DO NOT USE Uttar Pradesh India
Written by Maulshree Seth
| Lucknow |

Up to date: September 27, 2015 11:33:49 am





Lucknow typist, Akhilesh yadav, Lucknow typist threat calls, Lucknow typist police protection, Lucknow GPO typist, Lucknow typist Krishna Kumar, Lucknow Police, UP police, Uttar pradesh news, lucknow news, india news, latest news, indian express On the 500-metre footpath, alongside a highway that results in the Governor Home and Chief Minister’s residence, there are 5 others like him, sitting in a row on previous bedsheets, about 2 metres aside, their typewriters positioned on small stools. (Supply: Specific picture by Vishal Srivastav)

Krishna Kumar, typist, GPO ke saamne wale footpath se bol raha hoon. Batayen, kya kaam hai?” Kumar and his typewriter hit social media fame final week when a policeman broke his machine throughout an anti-encroachment drive. Kumar has since returned to the spot the place he has been sitting for 34 years, with Rs 2 lakh support, a Remington typewriter and two safety personnel, deployed since Kumar received a “threatening name”. A police car now brings him to work each day and drops him residence.

READ: After social media outrage, Lucknow cop suspended for breaking aged man’s typewriter

Every thing else, as Kumar’s terse introduction of himself over the cellphone exhibits, stays the identical.

Lucknow typist, Akhilesh yadav, Lucknow typist threat calls, Lucknow typist police protection, Lucknow GPO typist, Lucknow typist Krishna Kumar, Lucknow Police, UP police, Uttar pradesh news, lucknow news, india news, latest news, indian express Typist Krishna Kumar going again residence below police safety after he recieved risk name from unknown caller a day after the incident. (Supply: Specific picture by Vishal Srivastav)

On the 500-metre footpath, alongside a highway that results in the Governor Home and Chief Minister’s residence, there are 5 others like him, sitting in a row on previous bedsheets, about 2 metres aside, their typewriters positioned on small stools. The machines could also be on their final legs however not typists like Kumar, who stay, for a lot of, guiding lights by means of the bureaucratic maze.

Kumar is at his spot, below a tree, from 7 am to five pm, incomes Rs 150-170 each day, the equal of what a pc typist makes on a median. Nonetheless, Kumar, who studied solely as much as Class X, factors out, “Even right now, a pc typist can not write purposes for a poor or illiterate particular person coming to fulfill the CM, officers or the DGP, in a approach we will.” His fellow typists nod in settlement.

Round 11 am, a youth arrives on a scooter, carrying a stack of garments on the pillion. Wanting round to verify there isn’t any visitors policeman current, in order that he can depart his two-wheeler there, he approaches Ram Swaroop Verma, who sits subsequent to Kumar.

Verma, 53, has a bachelor’s diploma in economics. However he has been working as a typist for 25 years. “What’s your drawback?” Verma asks the youth, who identifies himself as Prithvi Kanaujia, 23. Kanaujia irons garments at OCR Constructing, the place ministers and officers keep.

“My brother has grabbed my land and I’ve to offer an software to sahab,” Kanaujia says. He doesn’t know the identify of the “sahab” however shares that he’s a type of officers whose garments he irons, who has promised to assist him.

Kanaujia appears to be like on as Verma loops the paper into his grey-and-black Remington, now greater than 20 years previous. “Right here I’ve to only inform my drawback and so they sort out the appliance and even counsel whom to handle it to. A pc typist will ask you to first write a draft software, or they cost further,” Kanaujia says.

Noting that Verma has began the letter, he interrupts, “Do point out that even native police will not be serving to.” Verma shoots down the concept, “In the end you want the assistance of native policemen. Should you identify them in your criticism, why will they enable you?”

In 4 minutes, Verma is finished, and asks Kanaujia for Rs 20 for 2 copies, additionally telling him the place to put in writing the officer’s identify and the place to signal his personal identify.

In the meantime, two youth have approached Kumar. He had typed out their job purposes earlier, and now they’ve come to him to draft an RTI plea. They need to know whether or not their two-year diploma from Lucknow College carries the identical weight as a three-year programme. Kumar doesn’t want any extra particulars. “I’ve ready affidavits of politicians, bio-data of scholars and professionals, in addition to switch purposes of policemen and PILs of attorneys,” he says.

In all these years, Kumar provides, his typewriter has been seized not less than 4 instances in anti-encroachment drives. It’s his purchasers who helped him get it again, he says.

Nonetheless, what occurred on September 19, when a policeman smashed Kumar’s typewriter for refusing to maneuver, was unprecedented.

The footpath they sit on, reverse the Basic Put up Workplace, is in one of many highest safety zones of the state. Other than the Governor Home and the CM’s residence, ministers’ workplaces, the DGP’s workplace and Secretariat are positioned inside a 5-km radius.

When Inspector Pradeep Kumar (since suspended) broke his machine, it wasn’t simply the lack of earnings that apprehensive Kumar. Like their counterparts internationally, the typists listed here are engaged on the final of the typewriters. It has been 4 years since what was thought-about the world’s solely remaining unit manufacturing “official typewriters (that are heavy and stationary)” shut down in Maharashtra. Only some corporations proceed to fabricate moveable typewriters, and none in India. The GPO typists say it’s unattainable to discover a new typewriter now, and the price of the components is prohibitive.

After the {photograph} of Kumar pleading with the inspector to not break his typewriter surfaced, orders got here from the CM’s workplace to seek out the 65-year-old a brand new one. Lucknow District Justice of the Peace Raj Shekhar says he first contacted Remington on-line, and was instructed to contact their native reseller as they’d stopped manufacturing the machines. The merchants’ union additionally instructed him to do the identical. Given the strain to supply Kumar a typewriter as quickly as potential, the administration, which didn’t know whether or not he typed in Hindi or English, procured each. Later, it returned the English one.

By the way, among the many small companies which have sprung up on the footpath due to the typists is “a roaming mechanic”, who claims to have spare components of previous typewriters. “My father too was a typewriter mechanic,” says Mohd Ishar, who’s in his early 50s.

Because the incident, Kumar claims, he has been getting calls in addition to “donations” into an account whose quantity was put up on the Web by somebody. “I’m ready for Monday to see how a lot cash has come,” he says.

Kumar has had a gradual string of shoppers right now, and will get as much as take a tea break solely round 2.30 pm. Stating that “that is all I do know”, he says that it was in 1981 that his father, a store munim, purchased him a typewriter for Rs 500. On the time, there have been 27 of them on the footpath. “Nonetheless, there was at all times a line of 10-15 individuals earlier than every of us.”

Kumar and the others began out charging 25 paise for 2 copies of a doc. Whereas that has gone as much as Rs 20 now, there was not a lot change in his total earnings, Kumar says, because the variety of prospects has fallen drastically.

The typists say the primary blow got here within the late ’90s when photocopy machines grew to become ubiquitous. As an alternative of in search of a 3rd or fourth copy of their software, individuals would simply get them photocopied.

By 2.45 pm, Kumar is again at his typewriter. A 22-year-old B.Tech scholar approaches the typists. Nonetheless, he solely has a question for Verma: “Janata darbar kis din hota hai?” he asks. Verma tells him it’s on Wednesday. The youth then desires to know if he can meet minister Shivpal Singh Yadav or CM on the darbar. “There is no such thing as a assure, however there will probably be a minister or officer who can take your software,” Verma explains.

“Many in my village haven’t received crop compensation and the pradhan requested me to offer a criticism on the janata darbar,” the youth explains. “I knew you can assist.” Verma is happy, “That is why even in right now’s pc age, individuals come to us.”

Round 5.30 pm, Kumar begins selecting up his issues. He locations a plastic cowl over the typewriter, wraps it with a material and masses it on his bicycle. He’ll depart it for the evening on the home of a pal in close by PWD Colony. Kumar himself lives in an EWS home close to Patrakar Puram, about 7 km away, along with his spouse and son.

As policemen cross by, working alongside to the Secretariat or different authorities workplaces close by, Kumar says, “Why ought to I depart this footpath? At 65, I’m not going to do the rest and I’m pleased with what I do.”

Simply as Kumar is leaving, a younger constable shakes his hand. Kumar permits himself a slight smile, “I had typed some purposes for him.”

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