Yesterday, this newspaper ran a report about Raju Yadav, a former tea delivery boy who was recently promoted to the post of web developer at a matrimonial portal called The portal has its office at Tardeo. Raju’s chai-to-office chair story is truly inspiring and encapsulates the Mumbai dream.

A boy from Jharkhand leaves his home at 13, after dropping out of school. He has one aim, to alleviate the poverty and suffering of his family back home. He finds a job as a chai delivery boy in SoBo, then gets a break as an administrative assistant in the office. After 10 years, he takes up an offer to become a web developer in the office.

In his story, Yadav says that he never lost sight of the importance of education. He advises parents in small towns to put an emphasis on their children’s education and not yearn for that government job that may prove elusive in the end. Yadav, who completed Std X and XII while working, and has now set his sights on a B Com degree, reinforces the old fashioned values like hard work and a never say die spirit. These are often forgotten or not given enough importance in this get-rich-quick age, where appearances are all, and people often forget that perspiration leads to inspiration.

Even though he failed at his first attempt at the Std X exam, he re-tried and passed, which attests to the quality of resilience the ability to bounce back from setbacks and pursue one’s goal with unwavering determination.

Above all, the chaiwallah’s story is a testimony to the spirit of enterprise of Mumbai city. It reinforces why this city is still the place to go for those who dream of making something of their lives. All its problems, drawbacks and challenges cannot take away from the fact that it is the ultimate immigrant magnet in India. It also proves that in Mumbai what counts is not where you come from or who your family is, but what you make of yourself. Here’s to the many Raju Yadavs we may never hear of or read about.