“Courage and strength is not the absence of fear – it’s refusing to assume the role of a victim” – Anne Wafula Strike
Doing anything is rightly related to the hands and if someone has lost his hands, can he be expected to do anything? Obviously not, meet Mr. Purn Pasdesi of Bajwada village in Hosharpur (Punjab). He retired from Vishveshwanand Vedic Research Institute, Hoshiarpur in 2005. Thereafter he continued to work on contract basis as a proof reader. In 1976 he received the National award from the then President Fakruddin Ali Ahmed.
Pardesi’s father was employed as gang men in Shakoor Basti Railway Station, Delhi. Tragedy struck him, when he was going to school as a student of class four. He fell down while alighting from the train and both his hands got crushed under the wheels. Even after losing both his hands when Purn Chand insisted on continuing his studies, his father sent him to Jawaharlal Nehru Rehabilitation Institute in Delhi.
He managed to study with full zeal and dedication and passed matriculation examination in second division, thereafter he shifted to Hoshiarpur with his elder brother.When he was looking out for job in 1970, late Amar Nath Shastri offered him the job of a proof reader in Sadhu Ashram Press. His dedication for the job endeared him to all the staff and they appreciated his efforts against all odds.
Purn Chand retired in 2005, but he did not stop his work which was so dear to him. He still continues to do proof reading. No wonder he has the unique distinction of immaculately proof reading lakhs of book in English Hindi & Punjabi which is a record of sorts. He does the proof reading with such concentration and attention that not even a single mistake can pass unnoticed.
True to his name Purn Chand is a complete and fully contented man. He says “life has given me enough why should I have any grudge against God”. The message of his life is loud and clear “if you have a burning desire to do something and your determination to succeed is strong enough, then no obstacle can come in your way. He has shown to the world that disability is not a barrier in the path of progress.
Purn Chand did not get married because in his words “I don’t want to become a burden on anyone or be at the mercy of some one. His brothers and their families give him all the love, respect and support,
Even after losing both his hands Purn Chand has done such remarkable work, which even able bodied people would not do. He sums up his philosophy of life in these words “disability cannot be an excuse for not doing something.”