From Rags to Riches

I look around myself, only to find an innumerable number of examples of people who haven’t let their adverse conditions come in the way of their dreams, of people who have converted their hardships into their strengths. It takes an extraordinary courage, sincerity and dedication to make it from rags to riches. No one, perhaps, is born with such potential and vigor in them, it’s life that teaches one to stand firm.

To elucidate this, here are a few examples. Mr. Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani alias Dhirubhai Ambani stands testimony to every word I said above. Born into a modest family in a small town of Gujarat, he had to sell bhajiyas on the weekends, work as a clerk and a gas station attendant in the early years of his life. It was much later that he set up a textile industry with a meager capital of Rs.50, 000. He is said to have rewritten the history of corporate India. Joining him on the list is Mr. Narayana Murthy, the tycoon who co-founded Infosys in a small room with a few rupees, with 6 other like minded people. His vision and his dream have brought the whole country a great deal of pride and honour. It was simply his dedication towards his dream that has brought him this far. To quote a friend ‘his life is what dreams are made of’.

Apart from these business tycoons a whole lot of people have proved themselves despite their difficult situations. One such man is Sarathbabu. Not very famous, but has a very inspiring story. He spent his childhood in a slum of Chennai. In a family with four other siblings, his mother was the sole bread winner of the family. Topper of his school, he had to work during his vacations to earn money for his higher education. He did his graduation from BITS Pilani and hs post graduation from IIM –A. He pulled through with the help of scholarships and made a start towards his dream of being an entrepreneur. He took inspiration from his mother, Dhirubhai Ambani and Narayana Murthy. He wanted to employ as many people as possible and no amount of luxuries and big pay packages on offer lured him away from his dream. With all his values intact and keeping himself grounded, he only wanted a home and a car for his mother and no such pleasures for himself. Such are the people of honour.

The former US president, Mr. Bill Clinton also didn’t have an easy past, but who would believe it, looking at the accolades he has achieved. Scottish actor Sean Connery, who portrayed the secret agent, James Bond, spent much of his youth doing menial jobs for money. He left his school at an early age to take up a full time work. Those were however, no indication of what was lined up for him. After three years of Navy Service, he worked as a coffin polisher, a bricklayer and other such things that you wouldn’t expect from James Bond. Oprah Winfrey didn’t have it easy either, but she has made a place for herself that a lot of people envy. None of the above successes happened over-night. It took years of struggle, sacrifice and conviction to stand tall in the crowd of millions.

Having said all that, I get the feeling that a lot of times; it is the people with humble beginnings who make big in life. And by making big, I don’t refer to those who have achieved name and fame, but to those who have hit the bull’s eye. Is it because the people who live a comfortable life start taking things for granted and lose seriousness, while those who spend a turbulent life are more on their toes as they don’t have anything to fall back on? Well, by that I am not suggesting that only those people do well for themselves. It could just be that such stories come to notice while others don’t.

Chandni Narang

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