Give a brief account of the life and activities of the people like Saheb-e-Alam settled in Seemapuri


Answer – 

Anees Jung notes in “Lost Spring” that Saheb-e-Alam’s life and activities are entirely dependent on garbage. That is, in truth, garbage is their daily sustenance, and to them it is no less than gold. The poor rag pickers are generally barefoot, which she says is “an excuse to justify a permanent state of poverty”. They reside in mud structures with tin and tarpaulin roofs, without sewage, drainage, or running water. Whenever they can find food, they set up their tents. They have been residing in Seemapuri for more than 30 years without an identity or permission. They do, however, carry ration cards which enable them to vote.

For the inhabitants of Seemapuri, nothing else matters except survival. They set up their tents wherever there is food. The people of Seemapuri rely on garbage collection and ragpicking to provide for their daily needs and a roof over their heads. Finding money in the trash—whether it be one rupee or ten—can occasionally make someone’s day, especially if they are a child. It gives them hope. Things like torn shoes are a means to fulfil their unfulfilled dreams. Hence the writer’s statement that “garbage to them is gold” is true

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Check out more Questions and Answers from The Lost Spring


Mention the hazards of working in the glass bangle industry

What forces conspire to keep the workers in the bangle industry of Firozabad in poverty? 

What does the writer mean when she says, ‘Saheb is no longer his own master’? 

How was Mukesh’s attitude to his situation different from that of his family? 

“Mukesh is not like the others. His dreams loom like a mirage amidst the dust of streets that fill his town Firozabad”. Justify the statement in the light of contrast in the mindsets of Mukesh and the people of Firozabad. 

Would you agree that promises made to poor children are rarely kept? Why do you think this happens in the incidents narrated in the text?


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