Dasrath Manjhi took twenty-two years to build a road through the mountains in
Bihar. The road is an amazing achievement for a landless farmer and a symbol of
selfless service to mankind. He did it mainly by his own efforts, his drive and
his indomitable determination. He did it for the sake of his fellow men, not
expecting rewards of any sort. He did it using the simplest of tools-a chisel,
rope and a hammer!
Dasrath Manjhi, 31 years old at the time, set out to carve
a 1km-long path through a rocky hillside. He wanted life to be easier for his
fellow villagers. The hill kept the villages in isolation, forcing people to
trek through dangerous ground for hours just to reach the nearest market town.
Children had to walk eight kilometers to reach school, but thanks to Dasrath
Manjhi's handmade road, that distance has been reduced greatly. People from over
60 villages now use it every day.
'This hill has given us trouble and grief for centuries. The people asked the
government many times to make a proper road through the hill, but nobody paid
any attention. So I just decided I would do it all by myself,' Manjhi told the
newspaper in 2007.
However, what empowered a single man to accomplish such an enormous task? For
Dasrath, it was love for his wife. `My wife, Faguni Devi, was seriously injured
while crossing the hill to bring me water. At that time, I worked on a farm
across the hills. That was the day I decided to carve out a proper road through
this hill,' the farmer said. Sadly, his beloved wife didn't get to see the
fruits of his labour, as shortly after the accident she fell ill and died. She
could have been saved if she was taken to the hospital in time. The tragic loss
only made the ambitious man more focused on his task, and fellow villagers
remember seeing him 'hacking at the hill day and night as if he were possessed'.
At the beginning, most people didn't take his project seriously and they
ridiculed him and called him a madman for taking on such a Herculean task. As
time went by, and as the unfazed farmer continued to split the troublesome hill
in half, he started getting some help.
'Though most villagers taunted me at first, there were quite a few who lent
me support later by giving me food and helping me buy my tools,' he remembered.
Now, all the people of the Gaya district have nothing but gratitude for the
'mountain man' who single-handedly made their lives so much easier. He never
received any recognition from the government for his accomplishment. 'What I did
is there for everyone to see. When God is with you, nothing can stop you,'
Dasrath Manjhi once said. 'I am neither afraid of any punishment from any
government department for my work nor am I interested in any honor from the
Dasrath can teach us many valuable lessons through his accomplishment. He
proved by his contribution that patience is the greatest virtue that leads to
success. After all, he took twenty-two years for his project. He proved to us
that one can dream the impossible and yet make it come true. He also proved to
us that it is really one's attitude that decides how we want to live. He didn't
let his personal tragedy or his poverty come in the way of his project. He kept
positive despite everyone's criticism and comments. He didn't lose heart even
though he was called mad or crazy. He dared to be different.
Based on the passage given,
write a summary of :
* why Dasrath decided to
build this mountain road, and
* the invaluable lessons we
learn from his act
Your summary must not be
longer than 130 words, including the 10 words given below
Dasrath decided to build a
proper road through this hill ...