Bollywood flick Lage Raho Munnabhai seems to have inspired many people to adopt flower power and ‘Gandhigiri’ as a means of protest. Carpenter Naresh Sharma even managed to get timely payment from a client who had reportedly refused to pay him his dues. Sharma sat on a day-long dharna with Mahatma Gandhi’s poster in front of his client’s shop, on Friday. With this, Sharma not only earned media attention, his embarrassed client promptly paid him through cheque on Saturday morning.
Sharma (22), hailing from Rajasthan, has been working with his team of four-five carpenters in Vadodara ever since he was in his early teens. Sharma had made furniture for Sanjay Shah, a stationery store owner who did not pay up. ‘‘The bill was around Rs 13,400 but Sanjaybhai said he would pay me only Rs 4,000 and thereafter even dilly-dallied on that,’’ said Sharma. ‘‘I did not want to resort to violence, or turn to the police. I just thought of some peaceful manner in which I could get my money back,’’ admits Sharma.
And so, the Sanjay Dutt-starrer came in handy. After putting up a Gandhi poster on a wall, Sharma and a few of his friends sat on a dharna opposite the stationery shop. The move not only attracted the attention of passers-by, but also that of the police and the local media. On Saturday morning, Sharma was a happy man. He said that the shopkeeper handed him a cheque of Rs 9,000. ‘‘This is not the entire amount, but at least I got something substantial, which is what I wanted for my work,’’ said Sharma.