Beyond The Invisible

Amazing, Interesting and Inspiring

Beggars of Mumbai - Worth Giving a Second Thought

Name: Massu or Malana
Age: 60

Massu's Assets: RS 30 lakh in properties alone.

Day's earnings: Rs 1,000 to 1,500

Begs at: Lokhandwala. Mostly outside high-end restaurants visited by TV and film stars.
Working hours: 8 pm to 3 am.

Home : A one BHK at Amboli in Andheri (west). He owns another 1 BHK nearby.

Family: Wife, two sons and a daughter-in-law share the apartment with him.

Assets: Rs 30 lakh in just properties. One son makes and sells brooms, while the other hawks knick-knacks near Andheri station. He has substantial savings, but would not reveal details.

Cool quotient: Massu is dressed in spotless clothes when he takes an auto-rickshaw to Lokhandwala every evening. He changes into his beggar attire near Ad Labs. During his working hours, he has a complete sway over the area. You will never find another beggar in his vicinity. He takes an auto on his way home too. Stops at Yashraj Studios for a change of clothes.

Name: Krishna Kumar Gite
Age: 42
Krishna 's Assets: Rs 5 lakh in properties alone.
Day's earnings: Rs 1500 to 2000
Begs at: CP Tank, Charni Road
Working hours: Early morning to late evening

Home: I BHK apartment at Nallasopara, which he shares with his brother.

Family: Brother, sister-in-law and their children.

His worth: The Nallasopara apartment is worth nearly Rs 5 lakh. Krishna claimed he has substantial savings but would not put a figure to it. "My brother manages everything," he said.

Cool quotient: Claims he can't be bothered with money matters. He retires every evening to his Nallasopara home and hands over the day's earnings to his brother. "My bhabhi and brother know best what to do with the money."

Name: Bharat Jain
Age: 45
Bharat's Assets: Rs 70 lakh in properties alone.
Day's earnings: Rs 2000 to 2500
Begs at: Azad Maidan and Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus.
Working hours: Early morning to late evening.

Home : Two adjacent 1 BHK apartments in Parel, where his family stays. Bharat, however, visits home only once in a week. His family, which deals in school notebooks and other study material, has tried on many occasions to get Bharat to give up begging and join the family business.

Family: Wife, two sons -- one studying in class X and the other in class XII -- father and brother.

His worth: The family apartments are worth close to Rs 60 lakh. The family also has rented out a shop in Bhandup to a juice centre and gets Rs 7,000-a-month in rent. The rent is collected every month by Bharat's wife.

Cool quotient: Bharat speaks impeccable English. He is soft spoken and you will never find him harassing people for alms

Name: Haji
Age : 26
Haji's Assets: Rs 15 lakh
Day's earnings: Rs 1000 to 2000
Begs at: Deonar and Chembur. Usually begs near mosques and temples.
Working hours: Flexi. Picks the best time to be at a temple or a mosque.

Home: A room at Cheetah Camp, where his mother and sister run a zari workshop, employing 15 people.

Family: Mother and sister.

His worth: The Cheetah Camp room worth anything between Rs 3 and 5 lakh. The zari workshop could be worth 10 lakh. The family earns a steady income from the zari business and his mother has tried every trick to get him to give up begging and join the family business.

Cool quotient: He says managing the zari workshop is too much hardwork. "I can't be bothered with all that. I like to be left alone. Also, I make a decent amount every day.


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