Every person has a story to share. This column puts the spotlight on the people of Chennai, faces we see but rarely interact with — giving a glimpse into their struggle.
Ranjit Kumar (21), Tea master
Chennai: I am from Bihar but came here when I was 10 years old. I dropped out of school after Class 5 and came to Chennai with my brother who was working at a tea shop then. I started working at a chaat shop after I came here. It was not so difficult for me to grow up in Chennai but I did not have many friends as I did not know the language. However, I learnt to speak and communicate in Tamil after five years. I learnt by talking to customers. I have mother, father and sister in Patna. I stay with my brother in the city and we earn better here than we would earn in our native. There are a lot of youngsters from Bihar who come to Tamil Nadu in search of employment. Chennai is a developed city in comparison to other places and law and order is also strict. I go home once in six months, mostly for festivals and family functions. I have adapted to the lifestyle in south India and I am happy with my job. However, I want to go back to my native and start my own shop as I realise family is also important.