Kanpur: In the midst of a hostile climate of communal fear on various issues, a septuagenarian seller presents an example of the Hindu-Muslim harmony which thrills our hearts indeed. This quality appears in able-bodied shop owner Kaleem Malik on Meston Road here. For the past, about fifty long years, he has been keeping himself devoted with the business of differently shaped decorating items to be used in religious places or homes.
Popularly known as 'Gubbare Wale Chacha' in the crowded area, he revealed that it was the people who gave him this name more akin to his trade. Earlier, he used to sell attractive colourful balloons at his shop. In subsequent days he expanded his dealings in all types of decorative varieties including all those stuff required in decorating Janamashtami tableaux.
“I maintain a good quantity of stock of various items connected with the birthday of Lord Krishna. From stunning crowns added with whitish silver-coloured blobs to attractive costumes, artificial flowers, flickering stars, sparkling spotless frills and brilliant chandeliers are available at the shop” he stated.
Elucidating his method of business he maintained that his main purpose behind selling ornamental accessories of Hindu deities was to win people’s hearts and it was owing to this very reason his customers were increasing year after year. The goodwill he gained was immense.
“I see no reason why the normal courtesies of life should not be observed. It would be pleasant if we were to maintain our relationship on a calmer and more reasonable basis. It makes things so much more pleasant if we start behaving in a more polite way”, he insisted.
"If I care, my Hindu retailers, they in return offer me a great deal of esteem and admiration. This not only cements our bonds but also establish a trust of confidence, he said rather easily attaching that this is what I perceive as my remarkable effective dealing.
"At least, that is how I see it, but I am just not an inexperienced person. I never keep myself aloof from their impatience as I value their importance for the business."
His decorative pieces are not drawing customers in the city areas only but retailers from other places like Unnao, Kasganj, Hardoi, Farrukhabad and etc are also turning up to him. They usually address him in a polite tone. He fails to remember their wry faces slightly amused, slightly condescending expression that most of the people reserve for all those who are never refined.