Bengal: Semi-literate Kolkata cab driver, 70, runs three schools in Sunderbans
Kolkata, Oct 1: He has studied only till Class II. But that hasn't stopped the semi-literate Jalaluddin Ghazi, aged 70, from earning a social prestige in his locality. A taxi driver by profession, Ghazi runs two primary schools and one orphanage-cum-secondary school to provide free education to nearly 500 poor students in Uttar PurboThakuchak village in the Sunderbans. And the man runs these schools primarily from his own income although citizens have come up with donations of late to help Ghazi in his noble endeavor.
At seven, Ghazi, had to give up education because of financial hardships. His condition was so poor that he had to even beg and sleep on the pavements. At 17, he started pulling rickshaw to earn a living and in 1980, at 32, he started driving a taxi in Kolkata and started donating a part of his income for charitable purposes.
Ghazi was convinced that it was illiteracy which was the root of all problems and he wanted to set up a school for poor students to ensure that they did not face the same experience as he did.
Finally, in the late 1990s, Ghazi set up his first primary school and it was just a two-room affair which he started on a small piece of land that he got from his father. He then started another primary school in the mid-2000s and also an orphanage-cum-secondary school. Help started pouring in at this moment but Ghazi kept on sponsoring the school from his own income. Ghazi has a family of six to look after but it never meant that he fell short of funds for his school.
Ghazi, who has now taken a break from driving, eyes another senior secondary school in the village.