We see them but for most they don’t exist. That they are just as filled with emotions as us often does not matter. Forced to grow old even before they can grow up, if there is someone who needs you it is an impoverished child milling around on the street. All of us are familiar with their presence, their approaches and, our reactions. Mostly, like convent educated Samaritans we bring into force our well-mannered tolerance and simply ignore them. And during the times when we, the unfortunate and miserable, are having a bad day that might mean running late for office we are quick to shun away the poor little, probably hungry child who has been forced to spend the hot summer day on the open street under the blinding sun. They sure should understand how busy our life is! Our reaction, if not justifiable, is so commonplace that it appears acceptable. Allow me to interrupt, but is it not happiness that we seek as the ultimate end? And are we not leaving it behind when we drive past a needy child without showing to him that in our own little way we care? No matter how it appears, truth is that we do have the time and it’s not always about the money. It is as simple as talking to the street child who comes thumping your car’s pane like you would to a child in your own family. These children are so deprived of identity and acceptance that if we merely show interest in their ‘being human’, if we ask as little as their names or if they go to school, these little ones get touched in the most beautiful way. And this I do share from my personal experience that I so hope you make yours too. Why not treat a group of street children to Sandwiches every Sunday? Why not give them a little something on our birthdays? Why not give them a fun car jaunt? Not doing these may not make a difference to our blessed lives, but doing just a wee bit will, and that I am sure of. The point is to just be a little more alive to the children scattered on our streets and feel responsible for them- smiling at them warmly or stroking their heads when they come to us and not treat them like intangibles or irritants. For selling balloons or pleading to clean our car’s windscreen instead of enjoying soccer in a school was not really their choice, was it? Friends, can we please give an identity to those nameless faces? And won’t that take us closer to the good life that we seek? Just a belief…and hope.
Anupma Khanna, Senior Feature Writer, Pioneer.