In a world caught up with promotion of self there are some for whom instead of me the operative word is us. This is was what Manzil, a non-profit organisation does. It provides a community and resources for local youth from low-income background to learn, teach, be creative and see the world in new ways. Ravi Gulati, who spearheads Manzil observes that education is important to earn a livelihood but that is just a small part of life. “Manzil enables learning, fulfilment and responsibility not just for self but beyond that is –– family, neighbourhood, village, country and the world.”
NEW DELHI — As we weave through early-morning Delhi traffic on his motorbike, Ravi Gulati gets into a riff about status symbols in India, how from Armani jeans to Audis they are almost all Western, and how his car, a cheap and practical Maruti van that seats eight but won’t win any beauty contests, is a source of derision every time he pulls up at a five-star hotel for some lavish weeklong wedding (although he tries to avoid these occasions) that has cost more than is imaginable to a poor Indian.
Ravi Gulati left a corporate job and took to teaching children of drivers, barbers and maids near his home in New Delhi’s Khan Market. Today, in his unusual classroom every student is a teacher and every teacher a student. “I don’t expect the kids to pay me back but pay it forward,” says the man who has turned his home into a learning centre for the poor. A Ganesh Nadar continues our series on Extraordinary Indians.