Man Who Cut a Mountain For 22 Years
Dashrath Manjhi also known as Mountain Man was a poor laborer in the village of Gehlaur, near Gaya, Bihar state, India. After 22 years of sculpting, Manjhi shortened the journey between the Atri block and Wazirganj, Gaya district, from 55 km to 15 km.
But how could an old man like Manjhi have the strength to do such a tough job? It turns out that his wife made him do this.
“My wife was badly injured while crossing the hill to carry water. That was the day I decided to make this road.”
In 1959, Manjhi’s wife, Falguni Devi was badly injured because she fell from the mountain and the nearest town with a doctor was 55 km away. Some reports say she was injured while walking along a narrow path across the rocky ridge to bring water or lunch to Manjhi, who had to work away from the village at a location south of the ridge.
But unfortunately, his wife who he loved finally died in 1959 because he did not receive medical treatment on time after a fatal accident. This is because the distance from the city and where he lives is very far from the hospital. When he went to the hospital he had to pass through small gaps in a mountain some 55 kilometers away. But unfortunately, the wife died because the distance traveled was too far.
His wife died because she could not be taken to the hospital on time. This tragic loss was the source of Manjhi’s strength.
From the incident of his wife, he did not want other people to experience the same thing. With a strong determination starting from day and night Manjhi never stopped carving mountains.
Like the stories of other meritorious people, when Manjhi first started, many laughed at him and called him crazy. But as time went by, some people started to help him. Both in the form of tools, food, and energy.
Manjhi carved a road 110 m long, 7.6 m deep, and 9.1 m wide. He finished his work after 22 years, from 1960 to 1982. This road reduced the distance between the Atri block and Wazirganj, Gaya district, from 55 km to 15 km.
Manjhi died on 17 August 2007, at the age of 73.
Manjhi’s story has inspired a Bollywood film production house, where his story has been adapted into a film entitled “Manjhi-The Mountain Man.”