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Last week we asked the readers to go out on a reporting assignment, to interview a person who makes a living on the streets. We judged the entries on the questions asked, in the way the answers were cited and basic writing skills in general. This week, we have a more humorous topic: Hair-loss in Women. Articles written have to be submitted by 12AM Saturday and have to be written within 600 words. Send your entries to ds.risingstars@gmail.com.

Selling for a living: The Long Road Ahead

By Asmita Haq

11 pm, Dhaka at night: While riding in your luxurious car with the air conditioner on and the sound of the loud music resonating around your ears, you pulled down the window to experience the fresh night ai ... You looked out and noticed that on the streets were numerous people who loitered carrying various items even at this time of the night.

In Bangladesh, at night the streets are always buzzing with street sellerstrying to earn their livelihood. Their goal is not to create variety for the city residents,rather to create a place for themselves to survive and earn for their families.

Here is a short interview of one such person whom you might see walking down the streets trying to sell his lemons and earn a living. He wanted to be a government serviceholder, but he valued his siblings' desires more than his; so for their education and financial difficulties in the family, his mother sent him to Dhaka city to help his father and offer a helping hand to the only earning person in the family. Toknow more read below:

What is your name?
Mohammad Nayan

How old are you?
I am 14 years old.

Where is your hometown?

What do you sell?
Varieties of lemons

When did you come to Dhaka?
After the celebration of Eid ul Fitr.

Who are you living with here?
My father

Who are the other members in your family?
My mother, two sisters and two brothers who are presently living
in my village home.

What does your father do?
My father and I together share this work. He is sick so I work mostly.

Are you doing this work by choice or with the pressure of responsibility?
By choice. Because I feel bad for my old father, I want to help him.

So at what time do you start selling?
I begin at 7'o clock in the morning and leave for home around 11 at night.

Why so late at night?
Sometimes “chalan uthena” (to recover the cost of my goods). At such times, I have to wander the whole night to earn the considerable amount.

How much do you earn in a day?
I earn around Tk.150 to Tk.200.

Is the amount enough to run the expenditures of your living?
It is not sufficient but we have learned to manage.

In addition, from this amount, do you send some to your mother?
Yes. Besides, there is an NGO, which helps us remit some money to our families every week.

**NGO lends a particular amount to these workers on a periodic basis, which they later return on their earning**

Have you studied in school?
Yes, till class 3.

Why did you dropout then?
With five children, it was hard for my parents to run the family, so I dropped out to cut down the expenses. Moreover, I came here to help my father.

What was your ambition in life?
I always wanted to work in the government service.

What would you like to do in the future?
I hope someday I can sell these and get a job in the government service ... But till that day I have to find a better way or a solution.

Nayan has to walk the maze of the capital's streets the whole day and sometimes the whole night until the time he earns the amount that is capable of fulfilling his family's daily needs.


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