Rokeya need not pull rickshaws anymore
It is in compassion that we find our true worth. Despite all hardships and social injustice that one must be resilient enough to survive, whether we can remain compassionate towards those not as privileged as us is our true test of humanity. After all, a small gesture of compassion and generousity is all it takes to transform lives.
by Azibor Rahman
Rokeya working in her tea stall
Rokeya used to be a rickshaw-puller on the Kaliganj-Kotchandpur highway, who faced tremendous hardship given that she was the sole provider for her family. On top of that, very few people in the Bangladesh society would accept women as rickshaw pullers - which made her work even tougher.
Rokeya was a rickshaw puller
After reading her story published in Issue 22, Volume 4, of Star Insight Magazine, titled 'The Spirit of a Woman Rickshaw Puller', two very generous individuals had come forward and donated money so that a tea-stall could be put up by the roadside. The stall was completed and given to Rokeya, so that she could provide a better life to herself and her family.
The two generous individuals have requested anonymity. They had visited Rokeya at her stall to have a chat with her over cups of tea and biscuits. Rokeya says, “I am very grateful to them and the gift they have bestowed upon me. They have taken away my misery. I will remember them always.” A small gesture goes a long way. Individual efforts of those who are conscious of the sufferings of millions of poor Bangladeshis can make a difference. We hope such acts of generousity inspire others to follow suit, and change our society for the better.
(R) thedailystar.net 2011