Scribbles from a reporter's Note PAD
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The Street 'DIETICIAN' Vendor

“Eat at least two bananas and a glass of milk. You should take it twice, if not possible, once a day is ok”, recommends Vijay, to a person visiting him for consultancy on weight gain.
Self styled road side experts can be spotted across the country. Fortune tellers may be found at most of the places. In addition, jhola-chhap doctors, pseudo-opticians and self-announced orthopedics also seen at different locations.
For the first time, I encountered a Street Dietician. He was sat on an old piece of carpet, on the corner of a railway station’s foot over bridge. The instrument he possessed was only a weighing machine.
Five to four persons in queue. Not just to check their body weight. All to discuss their diet plan. But, none for weight loss, all for weight gain. Weight loss is a hot topic for metros. In T-2, T-3 cities, people work hard. Their physical activities are part of their job. Well, some of them do possess pot belly, but seldom obese.
Earlier, he was working as a trolley puller at a transport depot. About six month ago he met with an accident, when some heavy article fell near him. He received injuries in his left limb and compelled to be bed ridden for two months. As the only bread earner in the family, he had to work any way. He couldn’t join his previous assignment, as he was still unable to walk without support. Someone suggested him to purchase a weighing machine and offer his service to passers by
in the market. First he went to local market. But the very first day he was asked to pay money to local police, if he wanted to continue. The amount exceeded even his expected earning at the moment. He decided not to continue there.
For two days, he was in a state of depression and did nothing. Next day he visited his doctor. The treatment for his injured leg was going on. The doctor suggested that he can try the same near railway station gate. He followed suit.
Day by day, he started attracting more people. In addition to simple weight check, some persons often asked what to eat for weight gain. The number of queries were growing. In the beginning, he used to suggest them to have imbibed gram and milk, empty stomach.
He observed that if he continued suggesting about diet, it would attract more customers. He again visited his doctor and asked about benefits of diet. The doctor replied all his queries. He made a guiding note. He wanted to be a doctor after plus two. But he couldn’t appear for the test. He was in deep crisis. He had to run his family. He tried a lot, but got no jobs. He started working at a transport as trolley puller.
“I don’t charge extra. People pay only for weighing. If I ask them to pay for consultancy, they can do happily. But I won’t do like them, indicating towards a quack, offering medicines on the other side of the road. I couldn’t be a doctor. But, I’m serving people.”
  • by Mriegank Shekhar

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