A joint family of fifty members, with only twenty five beegha of land being the source of livelihood, and into it a son was born to parents who were not much educated. Little did they know that this very boy, Jagdeo, some day through hard labor would make his mark in society and make them feel proud.
Mr. Jagdeo Verma, CM, Rural, RBO, Indore, went through a life of struggle from his childhood, cycling his way to school more than ten km away from home, without the money to repair the puncture of his cycle, at which he had to walk all the way back home. He realised the importance of education at an early age as he watched the village boys wasting their life, facing a bleak future. He secured a first class in his intermediate college studies, got an ICAR scholarship which was a mere Rs. 100/- per month and with that money, went ahead to complete his graduation in Agriculture.
Facing casteism in college, he was greatly aggrieved on not being given admission to a college of his choice. As a protest he gave up the desire to complete his post graduation.
He was offered a job with RRB, but due to the corruption that prevailed then, he refused to take up the job and be a part of it. Later he joined SBI as Agriculture Assistant but was a witness to corruption at remote centres. This was a terrible jolt to him and the image he had of rural India was seriously shaken.
He would do his field visit on a cycle everyday, with total dedication. Unable to do much to prevent others being corrupt he developed a strong dislike for perpetrators of corruption. There were a number of instances where dealers attempted to offer bribes to Mr. Verma to get their cases sanctioned, but he dealt with all of them with an iron hand, refusing to sanction any case pertaining to them, if they dared to repeat the shameful act.
He was the first Agriculture Assistant to become a Trainee Officer in Bhopal Circle then.
At twenty six, married and with two children and a salary of only Rs. 700/- and by obtaining loans from the bank, he managed to educate five daughters of his brothers and arranged for their marriage also, while looking after his own family and attending to the financial and other needs of sick parents, aunts, uncles, sisters in law, brothers and others. Extending financial and other help to others continues till date. He recollects how he saved his sister in law’s only son from imminent death by rushing him to the hospital, miles away, when others gave up. He spent more than rupees one lac on his brother’s heart surgery to clear a blockage. He believes in doing good and forgetting the rest.
The more he gave the more he received from God, so he believes. His daughter is well settled in USA and his other children are doing well in their respective fields. His wife also does not demand anything from him and is aware of the need to maintain the joint family together and happy.
He lives a care free life, without much desire, maintains a smile on his face and wears a look of contentment. He has never been found cribbing about life or speaking ill of others. He is a man whom anyone can confide in.
His life has taught him that money is not required to be happy. Whatever resources we have, that only needs to be managed effectively to be happy. He never claimed that he alone did the job, but always passed on the credit to his team.
While he was posted at State Bank Learning Centre, Indore as a Faculty, he labored day and night to beautify the campus, whether it was raining or not, summer or winter, toiling hard to make the soil spring colorful blooms and lush lawns for all those who visit the place. He would be found watering the plants early in the morning, or even late at nights. He used his expertise in the field, to create beauty on barren grounds. His labor has borne fruits and the campus appears lovely- a mini paradise for every soul to breathe in fresh air and cool the mind as Nature’s beauty unfolds enveloping all into a state of deep peace.
A life of labor, underlined with love for human beings and the guiding principle that charity begins at home, Mr. Verma has proved himself to be the strong pillar that holds his huge joint family together, healthy and happy. It is said that the hands that labor are divine. And laboring with love, Mr. Verma has his own charm as even Mother Earth makes available her bounties for all who are fortunate to relate to him and spend some moments of life in the beautiful campus of SBLC, Indore . His tough labor welcomes one and all with love giving the sense of belongingness without any bias that is characteristic of Mother Nature.
CONTRIBUTED BY Ms. HARINA, SBLC INDORE