When their first child Eesha was born,constable Jayawant Patil and his wife Pratibha had decided to enroll their daughter in an English-medium school that is affiliated with the CBSE Board. But the meagre income that they earned didnt allow them to realise their dream. Patils modest salary was insufficient to pay the donations that the authorities of the CBSE schools in the city had asked for.
It has been over a month and a half since Patil,late Additional Commissioner Ashok Kamtes bodyguard,lost his life during the 26/11 attacks. His wife Prathibha still struggles to adapt to the changes that happened in her family after her husbands death.
He was the one who managed all the expenses,including Eeshas education. He never owned a land or a property when he was alive. Its ironical that his death brought his family a flat,which is a compensation, said Pratibha who plans to shift to Satara and take up a government job there. The future of the children is in my hands now. Though money is a reason for taking up a job,work will keep me engaged and help me forget what happened to us, she said.
Patil grew up living in a house which had two small rooms in Bhandups Utkarsh Nagar locality. The area has zigzag lanes and closely located houses with common walls and dingy doors. Throughout his life,he had seen his parents slog to meet basic household expenses. His father was a taxi driver. Those days,all the household items in Patils house would be coated in flour as his mother used to make papads from home. Though Patil was hailing from a poor family,he was not a person who craved for sympathy. Enrolling in the police force was the proudest moment for him and his dream was that his work would help him splash his photographs across the city. His dream has come true, said Raja More,Patils childhood friend.
At a glance,his house has a 10×12 ft room and a kitchen under a staircase that leads to the top floor. A television set and a refrigerator are kept in the corners of the room. He was too proud to complain and too practical to wish something that is out of his reach. He would want me to be like him, said Prathibha.