A Story of a Rickshaw Puller’s Son- Govind Jaiswal

IAS Officer Govind Jaiswal, son of rickshaw puller Source: Rediff
IAS Officer Govind Jaiswal, son of rickshaw puller
Source: Rediff

If there is a will, there is a way. Or so we have been told to believe. Once in a while, you hear of stories which reinstate your faith in this saying.

Govind Jaiswal ranked 48 in the civil services examinations 2006 in his first attempt. Jaiswal, the son of a poor rickshaw puller in Varanasi had cracked what is undoubtedly one of the toughest exams in the country. And Govind’s success was not only a tale of his determination and hard work, but that of a father’s dream and the many sacrifices he made to turn in into reality. Even with his meager income Govind’s father Narayan made it a point to send his children to school.

Childhood of Govind Jaiswal

Govind spent his childhood in a 12X8 sq ft of rented room in a poor neighborhood which he shared with his father, mother, and sisters. He had to study in the same room where the family cooked, washed, bathed and ate. To add to his woes, was the deafening noise of machines and generators in small workshops around their home. He could concentrate on his studies only after stuffing cotton wool into his ears.

While his father always encouraged him to study, his friends and neighbors were no so supportive and made fun of him. “A son of a rickshaw-puller will always be a rickshaw puller” was their common taunt. But Govind was not deterred. If anything, it made him more determined.

Narayan had worked at a government ration shop and when the shop shut he lost his job and bought a rickshaw and rented it out. He added to the number of rickshaws and was doing well. At that point, Narayan made some prudent investments. With daughters to marry off, he bought three small plots of land. But misfortune befell the family soon. Govind’s mother passed away and the family fell into hardship as Narayan’s rickshaw business also suffered.

Govind’s Journey of Becoming an IAS Officer

But Narayan did stop dreaming. Neither did Govind. He knew that IAS was his only chance to make it big in life. He could not get a secure government job as it often meant paying bribes to get one and he could not start a business as he had no money.

His father sold the last plot of land, the one he had left after marrying off his daughters and gave Rs 40,000 to Govind to pursue IAS coaching in Delhi. Govind took maths tuitions to supplement this. Unlike a lot of other aspirants who can appear for the exams more than once, Govind knew that it was for him a do or die situation. The funds would last him a year at the most. This only meant that Govind worked even harder.

In the days before the results were being announced, Narayan could not sleep for 10 days. When the results were announced, the news took the time to sink it. Govind knew that he could now fulfill the dream of his parents. The days of hardship were over.

“I am very sure that all the youngsters who are living in deprivation and facing consistent difficulties can accomplish anything and everything provided they have the will and courage,” Govind said in an interview later. He story will surely inspire a lot many others to do the same.

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