Staff Reporter

Physically challenged Mani makes a living selling crafts

CHENNAI: Inanimate cows and elephants in wood are his lifeline. Physically challenged A. Mani makes a living selling crafts, and his is a story of a man who has taken up the gauntlet in the face of mounting odds.

Neither the crippling disability of this 40-year-old, indigent status nor limited education could snuff out his spirit to make a living independently.

Hailing from Nagercoil, Mani ekes out a living making and selling art pieces carved from wood. He has made elephants, horses, camels, cows and lions.

Now, Nandini Voice for the Deprived, a non-governmental organisation in Chennai, has come to his aid by helping him market his work.

Mani began his career as an artisan after the photo framing shop where he was employed was shut. With a wife and two daughters to support, the man decided to make use of the skills he had picked up while working at the shop. It was when he was told to choose between paying a raised rent for the house he was living in with his family or find a new dwelling that he approached the NGO for assistance.

Mani's products have been displayed at an exhibition put up at Nandini Voice for the Deprived, M-60/1, IV Cross Street, Besant Nagar, Chennai 90 (Phone: 24916037).

The craftsman lives at 119/AB, Melakkalingadi, S. Thangammal Compound, CBH Road, Nagercoil, Kanyakumari district.