Shyam Kishore Prasad
Age: 35

“I did a BA Pass course from Delhi University’s Hindu College in 2005. I scored about 51% in the first two years, which I think is fairly decent. However, the last year of my graduation was not easy. I wasn’t able to fill out the examination forms for a couple of subjects because of financial constraints, so I couldn’t sit for those two exams, and because of that my percentage plummeted.

“I decided to not pursue studies any further. No one wants to study for the sake of knowledge. Education in today’s day and age is perceived as a means to earn. The quality of education in our country is a different story altogether as the courses seem unnecessarily lengthy, and most of the things taught have no application in practical life.

“During my final year, I underwent training to give massages at The Blind Relief Association in Delhi. But because of certain personal reasons, I couldn’t complete the training then. After my graduation, I decided to undergo training again, and now I am a certified masseur.

“Despite the training and certificate, it was challenging to establish myself as a masseur. Nobody was comfortable with me, a blind man, giving massages. My first job was at Bapu Nature Cure Hospital and Yogashram. I worked there for seven months and learnt ayurvedic, naturopathic techniques of massaging. After my stint there, I took up a more than three-year-long course in yoga and naturopathy from the Gandhi National Academy of Naturopathy.

“Now, I work at The Blind Relief Association as an Assistant Massage Trainer. I teach the blind – who want to pursue the course – and learn how to give massages. I’m also working at a gym called Fitness Fusion in Delhi’s Vasant Kunj.”

– As told to Tania Goklany. She met Shyam at The Blind Relief Association in Delhi.

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