Class 9 NCERT Solutions English Chapter 10 - The Beggar
The Beggar Exercise 67
Lushkoff has become a beggar by circumstance. He was formerly a singer in a Russian choir but was sent away because of his drunkenness.
The reasons he gives to Sergei for his telling lies was that he formerly sang in a Russian choir but was sent away for drunkenness. However he could not get along without lying as no one would give him anything if he told the truth.
No, Lushkoff is not a willing worker. He agrees to chop wood for Sergei not because he was hungry and wanted work but because of his pride and shame and since he had been trapped by his own words. His strength had been undermined by drinking too much vodka and he was unhealthy and did not feel the slightest inclination to do any work.
The Beggar Exercise 68
Although it is impossible to abolish begging in our country there are various ways adults and we as students can help beggars lead a slightly better life.
Some of the ways are as follows:
- Avoid giving them money.
- Buy them some food instead of giving them money.
- Collect your old clothes and when you do see a beggar who is in dirty shabby clothes offer them a set. Don’t give them a bag full of clothes because remember they don’t have a place to store them.
- If you see little children begging on the streets try and follow them to where an adult might be waiting. Buy the kids some biscuits and advice the parents not to allow the children on to the roads.
- If you see an old man/woman begging you could take him to a road side tea stall and get him a cup of tea and if he is a regular pay the tea stall owner to give him a cup of tea every day for a week or even a month.
- Take a walk out in the evenings especially in winter and offer old bed sheets to beggars sleeping on the road.
- Today many NGO’s have started shelters to care for beggars and street children. Try and convince the children to go there and if you can offer to take them there.
- You might not feel comfortable treating the wounds of some beggars but you could give them some clean water to wash the wound and a bandage and some antiseptic to apply on the wound.
- If you are still interested try and find out the reasons why they need to beg and if possible try and find a solution. This may not be easy but if you work as a group then something may be possible. You can collect food, clothes, funds etc and help them.
Ever since the day Sergei asked Lushkoff to work for him and cut wood he kept coming back to him and doing all kinds of jobs. He would shovel snow, put the wood-shed in order and even beat the dust out of rugs and mattresses. Every time he received from twenty to forty copecks, for his work and once, even a pair of old trousers was sent out to him.
Sergei says that he is happy that his words have taken effect because he sees that the man is now sober and has no objection to doing work. He realizes that his words had been responsible for getting Sergei on to the right path. He had stopped begging and lying and had started earning money by working. Yes, Sergei is right in saying these words.
Lushkoff is earning thirty five roubles a month. He is obliged to Sergei for this because Sergei thought him to earn a living by working and not just by lying and begging. When Sergei moved into another house he gave Lushkoff a letter to his friend requesting him to give him some copying to do. He advised him to work hard and stay sober. Had it not been for Sergei he would still have been lying to people and calling himself a teacher or a student till that day.
During their conversation Lushkoff reveals that Sergei’s cook, Olga, is responsible for the positive change in him. Whenever he went to Sergei’s house to chop wood she used to insult him and call him names like ‘sot’ and miserable creature and inform him that there was nothing for him but ruin. She would sit down opposite him and grow sad, look into his face and weep calling him an unlucky man and telling him that there would be no pleasure for him either in this world or the next. She would call him a drunkard and tell him that he would burn in hell. In this way she would carry on, suffering and shedding tears for his sake. She pitied him yet kept on insulting him as she felt that was the only way to make him change.
Through all this however she used to chop the wood for him. He had not chopped a single stick of wood as she did it all for him. Her kindness and genuine concern inspite of her insults was responsible for saving him and the reason, why he changed and stopped drinking.
Her words and noble deeds were responsible for the change that took place in his heart. She had set him right and he would never forget it. This is how she had saved Lushkoff.