From rags to riches this commemorative day.
Stretching from the Himalayan peaks all the way to the Indian Ocean coastline, India is a vast South Asian country with a diverse landscape, culture and history dating back five thousand years. As a country of such rich variety it’s only expected that the people of India have seen many laws and governments, and on January 26th India commemorates the day the Government of India Act was replaced with the Constitution of India in 1950. In the spirit of progression and life-changing events, today we’re looking at the incredible story of young Mofijul Rahima Sheikh from West Bengal, India. Let’s begin this ultimate rags to riches tale.
India and the lottery
India’s population roughly sits at 1,347,486,839, making it the second most populated country in the world. With statistics like that, can you imagine the number of adults taking their chances and playing the lottery? With a variety of national lotteries of their own, they have many options to choose from. While India might be one the wealthiest countries in the world, their distribution of wealth is not equal and something as small as a lottery ticket would cost someone their daily wage.
As the saying goes, sometimes the risk is worth the reward, and this is exactly why Indians play the lottery. The allure of playing Powerball or an instant win game is that just about anyone is a potential millionaire.
Where it all started
At the age of 22, Mofijul Rahima Sheikh decided to move from Bardham, West Bengal to Kerala. Knowing that he could earn twice as much in Kerala than his hometown, the potential of a great paying job made moving nearly 2500 kilometres away easier. However he was motivated by more than just the money. Not too long before making the decision to move, Mofijul became a father. Now, not only did he want a better life for himself, but also for his young daughter. Mofijul’s main goal was to work, save enough money and then build a house for his family.
The golden ticket
Once Mofijul settled in Kerala, he managed to secure a job at a construction site. His daily wage was Rs 50, this is about $0.78. Can you imagine earning this and still having the motivation to save for a house? In a moment you’ll be further amazed. Mofijul earned his first wage and on his way home, came across a man selling lottery tickets. While a lottery seller wouldn’t usually make someone stop and stare, this one stunned Mofijul enough to stop him in his tracks. Whether Mofijul saw himself in the lottery ticket seller or simply empathized with him, Mofijul could not pass without buying a ticket. So what shocked Mofijul so much you might ask? This vendor wasn’t selling lottery tickets as a hobby, or in his spare time, but he was selling them to make a living. No ticket sale meant no food on the table that night. So with Rs 50 to his name, Mofijul spent it all on a ticket and went on his way.
3 days later…
Mofijul won the lottery but had no idea. When he finally found out that he won Rs10,000,000, about $150,000, he went straight to a local police station. Extreme move? Not for a new millionaire. Mofijul acted out of the fear that someone would attack him for his ticket. While $150,000 might not seem like the biggest jackpot someone could win, this amount would be life-changing for someone living in India.
Over the next 2 days Mofijul voluntarily stayed within police custody until the banks opened and he was able to cash in his ticket and collect his winnings. What was meant to be a decade-long plan, turned into only a mere five-day experience.
One kind gesture changed Mofijul’s life and you can change yours too. Whether you’re reaching for your dreams through kind gestures or by playing the lottery, keep it up, maybe one day we’ll be telling your story.
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