Warangal Urban: He fractured both his legs in an accident, spent three and half months on a hospital bed and locked himself in his hut for nearly two years thereafter.
Gunde Ramulu is a 65-year-old cobbler from Gudur in Palakurthy mandal of Jangaon district. His story goes back 20 years from now when a jeep ran over him while he was mending footwear under a tree. Still traumatised, Ramulu darns shoes under same tree near the DIG office at Subedari in Hanamkonda.
“Since there was no work in my village for me to make a living, I left with my wife Indira, who is from Waddepally. Its 40 years since I am sitting under. I learnt to stitch shoes from my father Chandraiah,” Ramulu told Telangana Today.
Ramulu, who has three sons and one daughter, managed to get his children married. They all live separately and, Ramulu and Indira live in their hut behind the forest office near Bandam Cheruvu in Hanamkonda.
“I want to work till my last breath since I know nothing other than mending shoes,” the frail old man said as his hands shivered while piercing a needle into a chappal.
He is thankful to his wife, who is a domestic help. “She stood by me through thick and thin,” he said.
When asked if he asked for help from his sons, Ramulu said: “How can I ask them for help? They have their families to take care of”.
What adds to Ramulu’s troubles is that he has a ration card but does not get pension. “I ran from pillar to post at the Tehsildar office with a request to sanction my pension, but I have not received it yet,” he said. But he seems undeterred by the vagaries of life.