KARAIKUDI:Though differently-abled septuagenarian R Selvaraj finds it difficult to board buses to seek alms for aiding poor students, he claimed it gives him immense satisfaction.
Selvaraj said he couldn’t recollect the number of students he had helped so far. But this year he helped around 26 students buy notebooks, pens, pencils and other stationery, he claimed, and added that all of them lived near his home.
“I come in my two-wheeler to the bus stand and seek alms from 7.30 am to 11.45 am, after which I return and take rest. I again do it from 3 pm up to 6.30 pm. After coming to know about my service to the children, a hotelier declined to accept money from me. But as I refused he began offering me food for half the price.”
“On average, I get Rs 400 a day by seeking alms if I board more buses. Through this I get Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000 per month and from regular benefactors I get at least Rs 2,000 per month. Overall I get Rs 12,000 to Rs 14,000 per month. I spend Rs 7,000-8,000 on children every month.” He added, “As I am a bachelor, I needn’t save money for anybody. So I spend most of the money on the students after my expenses, including food and house rent,” he said. “In the evenings, I offer tuitions to those I have been helping. I teach students from classes I to X,” he said.
“Though I am a BA Economics graduate, I teach all subjects. Sometimes I find it difficult to answer questions. At such times, I reread the text,” he added. One of his students, R Anand, said, “I never knew that he sought alms to help us. When I came to know about it, I was surprised,” he said.