Stories of tear and triumph keep pouring in throughout the narrations of Oman based social worker, P M Jabir.Jabir has been actively involved in selfless social service in the Sultanate of Oman for almost three decades now. His life today revolves around his service to the society and the deep sense of satisfaction he derives from it.
Housemaids to laborers to those who find themselves in absolute solitude in these deserts seek help from him. He has been handling innumerous cases across various nationalities, since 1980, that many names and incidents have been lost in memory. When stranded helpless in the dark, Jabir has been the little ray of hope for more than 1000s and 1000s of people.
“The shine I see in their eyes is the most satisfying,” Jabir says. “The feeling that some hope still exists twinkles in their eyes.
I don’t expect gratitude from any of those who I help. I’ve sent over 4000 bodies of the deceased. Can I expect that any will come back to life and tell me a thank you? No! I do it because it is the most satisfying feeling to ponder upon at the end of the day,”
When asked what is the first such case you have been involved with, he replies,” In 1992,I was involved in the cremation of a body that was lying unclaimed in the mortuary for over six months then. The local bodies that wanted to dispose off the body contacted the Indian embassy asking if they wanted to claim the body. The embassy in turn contacted me and I went to the mortuary to collect the body, which was already decomposed quite a bit by then. What came to me by shock was that the body was of a man who would regularly get drunk and call me and my organization names for many years then. Nevertheless, the cremation was done with all due respect.
On being asked about the incident that touched him the most, among many such, he narrated the story of a man named Unnithan who had been stranded in Oman for years without help, money and the necessary papers to get back home. After quite a struggle when every paper he would require was ready, the man passed away a day before the day of travel.” I still see his face in my eyes,” Jabir added.
“Another gesture that filled my eyes came from an eight year old boy. There was a case of a patient who needed to be airlifted and also required financial help for his treatment and travel requirements. In order to collect the money I had an article written in a magazine. In response, I got a call from a tuition teacher saying that one of her students had collected money. When I went there what I experienced was deeply moving. An eight-year-old boy had collected 46RO(Dhs 450) from the residents of the building. He had a plastic bag stuck with the paper cutting of the magazine article and went to each house in the building to collect money. He was the son of the watchman of the building. The small amount of money I received from this little boy was perhaps the largest in terms of his humongous gesture.”
Among the many anecdotes is another very touching one of an elderly man from Hyderabad who needed to get back home to be with his mother who was not keeping well. As far as Jabir was concerned he says that it wasn’t very difficult to get his papers ready but to this man that was all that mattered at that point of his life. With deep emotions Jabir notes, “When he was just ready to leave at the airport, he touched my feet. I was stuck to have an elderly man do something like this. This incident has deeply stirred me.”
“Whenever I see an exploited housemaid who comes to me for help, I wonder, what if she were my mother or sister,” Jabir had tears in his eyes. “For years I have been campaigning to put an end to the exploitation faced by housemaids in the Gulf.”
Who is your support through all your efforts? Without taking a second, he replies in a tone filled with pride,” My wife. Without her understanding, none of this would have been possible”.
Here, we have a man, most stranded meet at that place they think of as the end of the road, and he’ s always there to help them take a diversion, a new road ahead. Those who have nowhere to go and think of themselves as most unfortunate have for years found a relief, vent and bundles of hope in the form of Jabir.
And I have forever found in him the ‘Best Father’ anyone could ever ask for.Thank you pa for being the finest example of leading the most treasure -filled life.