An 11-year-old boy cycles 600 km to take his injured parents back to their village

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, Tabaarak rode a tricycle cart for nine consecutive days from Uttar Pradesh to Bihar

The nation witnessed numerous images of migrant labourers making the long journey home on foot during the beginning of the pandemic-led lockdown. However, even with transport services slowly opening up across the country phase by phase, there is still a dearth in resources to ferry everyone to their native states.

Taking matters into his own hands, 11-year-old Tabaarak pedalled a tricycle cart for nine consecutive days to transport his parents from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh, to Araria in Bihar.  

Tabaarak, the fifth of the couple’s six children, took up the onus of travelling 600 km to ensure that his mother and father reached the village safe and sound. The family is landless and lives in a hut in Araria’s Jokihat block. His father Israfil met with an accident and fractured his leg, while his mother Sogra had been blinded in an injury while harvesting paddy crops. 

“A stone fell on my foot on the fourth day of work, and the owner of the shop got me medical treatment. My wife and son had visited me just before lockdown. We ran out of food. I have a tricycle cart, so we started the journey thinking that we are dying here (in Varanasi) anyway. But, God, and the people we met on the way, helped us reach home safely,” Israfil, the 55-year-old father of Tabaarak told The Wire.

Tabaarak and his parents (Image: The Wire)

Upon reaching, Tabaarak and Israfil were led to an isolation ward in a government school in Jokihat, while his mother Sogra is quarantining at home since there is no facility to accommodate women at the same isolation ward. 

“Congratulations, friends. I have found the country’s first and youngest self-reliant 11-year-old child Tabaarak,” Madhu Singh, Rashtriya Janata Dal leader, wrote while sharing the video, as reported by Storypick

Earlier, a 15-year-old teenager Jyoti cycled 1,200 km from Delhi to Darbhanga, Bihar, with her injured father on the pillion, for about a week starting May 10, due to the lack of transportation during the lockdown.

While Tabaarak and Jyothi’s story talks at length about their courage and determination, but the ordeals faced by the migrant labourers and daily wage earners ever since the first nationwide lockdown was announced on March 24, cannot be ignored.

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Edited by Suman Singh


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