With economic independence, much confidence and assertiveness is seen in today’s women.

Some time back, while on my evening walk, I encountered an old, handicapped beggar.

“Babu ji, I have not eaten anything since morning. Can you buy some food for me?” the old man pleaded.

“Baba, what would you like to have?” I asked the septuagenarian.

“Samosas” he replied childishly.

Grinning at his innocence, I bought two samosas, a cup of tea for him, from a nearby confectionery shop.

Seeing me giving food to the beggar, a young man of about 40 years alighted from his SUV and gave unsolicited advice, “Sir, by giving food to these parasites, you are only encouraging begging in the society. Don’t you know that begging is a crime?”

“But this man’s one hand is amputated. Also he is too old, weak to do any strenuous work.” said I.

Before I could say further, his wife got down from the vehicle and said to his husband, “What about you Mr. Munish?”

“What do you mean?” asked the young man shockingly.

“You live off the ill gotten wealth, hefty pension of your bureaucrat father. Although it is your responsibility to do household expenses, it is always me who buy groceries, vegetables, pay utility bills out of my salary. At the time of marriage, as per your demand, my father gave you this Tata Safari in dowry. Mr. Munish, this old person is a beggar by compulsion, but you are a beggar by choice. The fact is that you are the biggest of all the beggars!” she said, looking pointedly at her husband who was standing silently with his neck down.

“Kindly teach him to be atleast courteous to those who are not born with silver spoons in their mouths” said I.

“Uncle ji, that will be my homework” she said smilingly.

I smiled back, patted her back and resumed my walk.

~ Sanjay Gargish ~

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Sanjeev Gargish

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