In 30 years no one has behaved like this, says man whose typewriter was smashed by cop

"I pleaded with him, told him that this was my only source of income. But he did not listen," says Kumar.
In 30 years no one has behaved like this, says man whose typewriter was smashed by cop
In 30 years no one has behaved like this, says man whose typewriter was smashed by cop
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Sixty-five-year-old Kishan Kumar's phone has been ringing non-stop from the last few days. 

The story of the Lucknow-based man's typewriter being smashed by a cop went viral on social media last week, after pictures of the incident were published on Facebook by a local photographer. 

The impact was such that barely 24 hours after they were uploaded, the UP government sprang into action and suspended the accused officer. Kumar was also gifted a new typewriter personally by the DM and SSP.

The post, which has been shared over 51,000 times at time of writing this copy, has spread far and wide with people from across the world expressing interest in helping Kumar financially.  

But for the Hindi typist, who works outside a post office in Lucknow, the attention and response is simply overwhelming.

"Apart from India, I have received calls from as far as Canada, Australia and Pakistan. I have received Rs 10,000 till now from different people," he says adding that the government too has announced Rs 1 lakh allowance for him, which he is yet to receive.

Narrating the incident with the policeman, Kumar says, "Where I work is a common footpath. Several other people, including other typists and chai-puri walas, also use it to for their business. I don’t know what prompted the policeman to kick and smash everything that day," he says.

He hints that many local cops try to extract money from them, and that he had always refused to shell out any bribe. Although this specific cop, he says, did not ask him to pay any money, the anger could have been a built up reaction to his refusal to pay.

"I folded my hands and pleaded with him. I told him that this was the only source of my income. But he did not listen," he adds. 

Kumar says that the area where he works is frequented by VIPs, and so people from the media are always present. "That is how they were able to take the pictures of the policeman destroying my typewriter," he says.

The sexagenarian has been working as a typist at that very spot outside the General Post Office (GPO) for the last 35 years. He cycles around 12 km from his house every day to work, works from 7 am to 5:30 pm and earns a maximum of Rs 100 on any given day. 

"Educated people get their documents printed on computers these days. Only the rural, uneducated ones come to us," Kumar says. 

Though the media spotlight helped bring Kumar’s plight to focus, it has also in a way disrupted his normal life. He hasn’t gone to work for the last few days and plans to skip work for at least another week. He has plans to move to another spot for work. "I have become old. Cycling every day to and from work is getting difficult for me. I will have to find a place to work somewhere close to my home," says Kumar, who lives with his wife, son, daughter-in-law and grandchildren. 

The impact of the episode, which Kumar describes as “an earthquake which struck my life and then moved on”, will take some time to subside.

"In my over three decades of work here, no one has ever behaved with me like this. We are old, weak and poor. People know about me because the media picked up the issue. But so many other people like me face such incidents daily and we never get to know about it. But I forgive the policeman because he too has a family too look after,” he says.  

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