Sunday, 4 August 2013

Gentleman, Do You Know Hindi ?


The job hunting days were quite miserable, yet it was also an exciting learning phase. We tried pretty hard to manage with limited resources and never dared to miss any opportunity for freshers that time. I used to feel extremely delighted whenever I got any interview call and then used to get equally depressed, as well as frustrated after the interview. I was entirely new to Bangalore those days and on one afternoon, I was on my way back home after a disastrous interview. As I walked through a busy street, all of a sudden a family approached me and asked "Bhai Saab, Apko Hindi Malum Hai?" Gentleman, do u know Hindi?

They looked a perfect joint family to me, with 2 elderly couples, 2 young couples stood nearby and the lady held a cute baby on her lap. I also noticed few more people nearby and assumed them to be part of the same family. The elderly couple talked to me and explained their pathetic situation. They said that they came all the way from some part of north India for their pilgrimage to Tirupathi. They didn’t book their return ticket and after their darshaan they came to Bangalore, as there used to have a direct train from Bangalore to their place. But they lost all their luggage and all the money they had with them as well, at the railway platform. They didn’t have any money to book their tickets and so asked some help from me. But my dirty mind started to suspect and with little discomfort I asked them some logical questions. The poor couple tried to convince me and I felt really bad whenever I looked into their miserable and tender eyes. 

I was little disturbed with their situation. Well, it could have happened to any of us and people should have really helped them. With little shyness, I said to them "At present I don’t have a job and I'm sorry, I wouldn’t be able to help you guys much. I've only 50 Rs in my pocket and I would need 10 Rs for my bus ticket to go home. I don’t know how these 40 Rs would be of any help to you guys?"

The elderly man replied "It’s all right, maybe it would take us few more days to collect the money but it's OK, it’s a great help from you"

They said thanks to me, but they didn't look very satisfied and I immediately left from there. On the way, I just wished if I could have helped them with little more money. That incident had a little impact on me and their miserable faces haunted me for quite sometime. Time passed by and after about 3 months later, I saw the same family on another busy street at a different place in Bangalore. It was not very difficult for me to recognize their faces, but I was pretty much sure they didn’t recognize me. That time also they approached me and started their conversation with "Gentleman, do you know Hindi?" 

They started to narrate me a similar kind of story and then I immediately interrupted "Till now you guys couldn’t collect the money for you tickets?" They looked little nervous and tried to ignore me completely. My second encounter with them had a much deeper impact on me and later, I came across few more such kind of gangs families. Well, everyone of them had a similar kind of story with slightly different flavors.

My last rendezvous with such kind of a joint family was a couple of years back. It was around 7:30 PM and I was on my way back home after office hours. I used to stay quite near to my office that time and preferred to stroll in the evening. On the crowded street they almost blocked my way and asked "Gentleman do you know Hindi?" Well, some old memories got refreshed that very moment and I just disappeared from there.

89 comments:

  1. I faced a similar incident few months back in Bangalore. A family of three-mother, father and a physically handicapped kid were asking for help on the streets and feeling sad i gave them some money(Normally I never give money to beggars but I really felt sad looking at the kid). After few days I saw the same trio in another street and the thing is the mother, a middle aged lady was a fat, rotund lady, seeing which I had my doubts if they were really poor.

    They are just part of a beggar's ring running in our city I guess. Now i know better :)

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    1. Haha Prasanna :) nice to know U had similar experience. These people have quite many gangs out here!

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  2. Well written - it only saddens me that people have to go for such and many more similar excuses for earning.

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    1. Thanks a lot. It's easy money for them.Like everything else emotion also sells a lot :)

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  3. Sometimes the genuine losers got no help because of these kind of cheats..well written!

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    1. Very true Murthy sir. Difficult to distinguish among the looters and the genuine losers. These people take advantage of people's emotion !

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  4. Oh I have been looted many a times by such thugs :-(..I met such a family in Majestic and gave them Rs 300 !!..I was such a fool ..same thing happened again near my office in Infantry Road and same guy asked me money ..this time I got hold of him , abused him and threatened to give him to the police..he pushed me aside and cursed me saying God will punish me..it is because of people like these now I hesitate to give even to genuine people..

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    1. Haha Binesh :) U too ! 300 is quite a lot of money :) Haha I liked their curse "God will punish you, if you don't pay us" awesome :)

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  5. Hhahaah..I have faced a lot of such situations...I don't understand how they manage to fool people with the same age-old tricks...
    Aapko ko bhi chuna laga gaya 40rs ka....

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    1. Haha.. these things are so common in Bangalore :) Market mai sab chalta hai dude. Same old bollywood shits, emotional saas/bahu TV soaps agar chal sakta hai to why not their old tricks? :)

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  6. Scams in small scale .. woow .. its a new for me !! these tactics will someday grow in scale and people will stop giving the really needy one's ... i am glad you didnt shell out much in the first instance .. you would be regretting it for a while !!

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    1. Aziz Bhai, these things are quite common at least in Bangalore :) Yes, U are correct, for the first instance I was quite disturbed with their situation. If I would have had money that time, I would have definitely given them. Emotion sells quite a lot u see :)

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  7. OMG!! Seriously?? The entire family...such a tall tale...and what a scam!

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    1. Haha Aditi.. There are many such gangs all around the city. Thanks for visiting out here!

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  8. Crooks and thugs are there everywhere so glad that you didn't get fooled, I was cheated by a lady who said her kid needed and operation once and later I got to know that she didn't have any kids and ultimate was this lady who came asking for money and she was pretending to be a eunuch. Still rolling wioth laughter. Jahid sir, awesome.

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    1. Yes Ram, Crooks and thugs are there everywhere. Difficult to trust people these days. Such people just play with our emotions, sad to know that U R also a victim :) Glad that u enjoyed the post. Thanks a lot Ram Sir, for visiting out here!

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  9. I also fell into the same trap once . I went to a ATM and withdraw money to give to them. And saw the same couple at same place 2 months later. I was stunned,angry and felt like a fool. But I realized what an ingenious way to earn money . And hats off to people who pull it off.

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    1. Haha Ashish, good to know that U are also a victim :) U are correct, those people are really genius and a lot to learn from them :)

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  10. Well written Jahid. It is quite disturbing that why do people prefer such a way to earn.

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    1. Thanks Sushmitha. Ya, it quite disturbing but I'really admire their guts and acting talent :)

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  11. See, it's cases like these that make me hesitate when people approach me on the street asking for money. Just can't trust people these days.

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    1. Yes Jammin, it's difficult to trust people these days. Small amount of money is not important but the feeling of being cheated could be really painful :)

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  12. Jahid, this happens in Delhi too. I have faced similar situations, just that instead of whole family, it is generally a woman with a young child telling people that she has been abandoned by her husband. She's a regular at a couple of metro stations here.

    On a lighter note, next time somebody asks if you know Hindi, say - Indi? amko indi nai aata. Aapko english aata..? :P

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    1. In Delhi they need to be very very talented, as I think people are smarter out there :) Aha! poor woman abandoned by her husband. How would she take care of her child? She must be earning hell lot of money, may be from the woman NGO's as well :) Haha.. Ur idea is superb :) Next time I would definitely say "aamko indi nai ata. Aapko english ata kya?" :)

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  13. Yes Jahid, the ploy is so convincing that they never run short of victims. Same with ladies who lose their jewellery. Ahhhh,,,, our Bengaluru !!!

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    1. yes Vimala, they never run short of victims :) I think these things are quite common in all major cities as well. Thanks for visiting out here Vimala !

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  14. I have been in this situation some time ago in Chennai. But the story was different. In my case, a middle aged man claimed he came to Chennai to attend an interview. But he was robbed of his belongings and he does not have money to go back home. An elderly gentleman took pity on him and offered to buy ticket, but he insisted he will buy ticket himself! Fortunately after this, the elderly gentleman woke up to what he was up to.

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    1. Haha Srinivasa :) he insisted to buy ticket himself, what he would have done with the ticket? :) These things are quite common in all major cities and specially near the railway stations. Thanks for visiting out here Srinivasa!

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  15. How do you separate wheat from the chaff! You want to help with wahtever limited resources but genuineness of it stops you!

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    1. Very true, so difficult to separate wheat from the chaff! Small amount of money doesn't matter, as people are there to help with whatever limited resources they got. But the feeling of being cheated could be very painful and people don't want to take that risk. Thanks a lot for visiting out here!

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  16. Very nicely written Jahid Bhai.. Even I'v encountered many such families, the first of them being at Richmond Circle. Just like u, I was also jobless then, and was about to give them 20 rs (that was all the money that i had on me at that point of time). Fortunately,my friend was smarter, he just forced me to ignore them and posed a simple question to me. 'Saale ban than ke Richmond Circle tak pohuch gaye aur bolte hai paisa nahi,majestic me hi kyu nahi maang liye sabse help, bewakuf banate hai sabko'..lol..

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    1. Haha.. :) Your friend was very smart and asked a very logical question. CID guys would have asked like this "Acha Daya! Ye Majestic se Richmond tak aaya kaise?" LOL :) Glad U liked the post and thanks a lot for visiting out here dude!

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  17. such con families or people really exists and they take advantage of kind Indian nature,it's good that you don't fall into there trap

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    1. Yes very true. Such people take advantage of our soft heart. But the market is so huge that they would usually find their victim :)

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  18. When a man with an honest intention and comapsssion is cheated, that is not the end of the world but it takes time to recover from its damaging effect to be his self with his intrinsic sense of goodness. A good compostion on the kind of experiences we have to face in our day to day life.

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    1. Thanks Mr Kajal, glad u liked the post. Yes, it takes time to recover from the mental shock after being cheated by such people.

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  19. One becomes hardened by such thugs,but the first timers do fill their pockets.
    I am quite heartless that way.

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    1. Yes Indu Ji, One really becomes hardened by such thugs and the first time becomes a sweet memory :)

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  20. Well what a experience jahid. This type of people r every where in society we learn to recognize them...... Keep Blogging

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    1. Correct Shilpa Ji, these types of people r every where in society and difficult to recognize them. Glad U liked the post!

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  21. this happened to us in Tirupati. And we had almost believed them, when a police officer came there in time and took them away for questioning.

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    1. I've also heard about lot of such incidents at Tirupathi. Nice that police officer came at time :)

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  22. This is the common sorry situation we have to face with the beggars ring in full operation.................


    You may also find Kenfolios interesting......

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    1. Yes Debopam, all the major cities are full of such looters :)

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  23. People are innovative when it comes to earning money. I too have come across such people.

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    1. Yes Tomichan Sir :) they really come with innovative ideas. We could see many such ideas in TV channels as well, after midnight.

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  24. i have faced this situation so many times.. and once even, i did help them too.. but then the concern becomes as to how can one differentiate the thug form the needy.. thanks to these gangs.. a person in real need would die without any help/

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    1. Yes Aersh, very difficult to differentiate the thug form the needy. The pain of being cheated could be little bit painful :) Really sad situation if needy people couldn't get any help. Thanks a lot for visiting out here dude!

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  25. Wow!!....this happened to you too, Jahid!!....I encountered such "families-in-distress" a couple of times in Bangalore with their same approach "bhai saab, aapko hindi malum hai kya!!?", but I have learned to see through their ploy and fortunately escaped without becoming a bakra!!.....However, earlier I used to really get sympathetic of individuals who used to approach me with their stories of distress and I would give away 20-30 Rs, especially in some occasions in my Hometown Guwahati and Delhi.....But these "family" gangs in Bangalore really takes the cake in terms of ingenuity!!...

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    1. Haha.. Kaushik, U too :) Now days, I simple run away from the spot as soon as I hear "bhai saab, aapko hindi malum hai kya!!?" :) Yes, they are really intelligent people and they come up with new and innovative ideas!

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  26. Good post...I think because of such looters, genuine people are getting affected. Don't know how to believe people ?

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    1. Thanks Ranjana :) Glad U liked the post. Yes, very difficult to believe people because of those looters! Thanks for visiting out here Ranjana!

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  27. Unfortunately what they stole from you is not money but trust. They have robbed some genuine helpless person who might really need the money badly.

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    1. Yes, they really stole our trust and rob some genuine needy people. Thanks a lot for visiting out here!

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  28. i have never fallen prey to such gangs by god's grace. But yeah these incidents when narrated make me learn to be careful and bit more heartless.

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    1. Good that U didn't fall prey to such gangs yet. these sort of incidents makes us more heartless. But only the genuine needy people suffers more. Sometimes it's even difficult to trust NGO's as well. Thanks a lot for visiting out here!

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  29. Replies
    1. Thanks Mukhtiar Bhai. Glad U liked it!

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  30. I have experienced 2-3 such instances too. That is so bad. The people in real in need will loose credibility because of these lot.

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    1. Ya Janika, these sort of incidents are quite common and it's really bad. It's difficult to trust people now days, not even the NGO's also. Thanks a lot for visiting out here Janika!

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  31. True story, happened to me in Delhi where a overly pregnant lady asked for money on India gate red light crossing. I gave her 100 rs, and saw her in the same situation 3-4 months later. You cant trust anyone these days :(

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    1. Haha.. pregnant lady concept is really very innovative one and people with almost ZERO level of emotion would also contribute :) Yes, U R correct, very difficult to trust people these days!

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  32. I had a similar experience in Paris! We were in line for the tickets for a museum and I strolled away a little making my sister stay in the line. I was clicking pictures when this little girl came to me and asked if I knew English. I said yes, and she handed me a slip of paper that said a similar story as this'family' told you. I didn't have any money so I apologised to her and she walked away. It made me feel guilty that I couldn't help a little girl. later that day when we reached Eiffel Tower, I saw 5 such little girls handing out slips of paper to any Asian looking person asking for money. So it's really an international thing!

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    1. Wow! they are in Europe also :) But I think, out here such people are much more creative and come up with new innovative ideas. U are very correct it's an international business and in India the market is extremely huge. Thanks for visiting out here Urshita and sharing Ur views !!

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  33. I could really connect. I faced a similar situation and to add on the guy who was asking for help, his mouth was stinking as if he just had a smoke. Then also he had an audacity to ask for the money.

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    1. Yes Anand, such incidents are very common. It's easy money and they usually work as a team. Thanks a lot for visiting out here !!

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  34. in mumbai you will see mother child gangs,the child sometimes newborns,they keep on crying ,and mothers would keep on begging.I really dont know whether they are real mothers or not .But in mumbai beware of these beggars gang,i instead give them food

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    1. Yes, many such gangs work as a perfect family. Giving them food is a nice idea, but I don't think many of them would be interested in that, I mean the gang members :) They usually operate in crowded areas, specially near the stations. Thanks a lot for visiting out here Farah !!

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  35. It's so rampant nowadays .. Now whenever I see a guy with a family approaching you, I directly say that though you have lost all your money, I won't be able to help you .. And they, somehow, always manage to get lost near a mall ..

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    1. Yes, it's difficult to trust such people now days and we even ignore the one who really needs help. Such people are very intelligent and are creative enough to come up with something new to win our sentiments. Thanks for dropping by dude !!

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  36. I met such a" joint family" in Mumbai once, they too told me a similar story of having lost their ticket, money and i innocently donated all i had to meet them again a few months later at another spot in the same city!
    By the way how can i earn a Top post on Indiblogger badge?

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    1. Hehe Nima, these people are very talented and can make a bakra out of any one. I think in Mumbai there would be plenty of them :) Thanks a lot for dropping by. Oh yes, whenever my post comes at the front page of Indiblogger I use to receive the batch, which I include in my blog !!

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    2. which is the front page of Indiblogger?Sorry for pestering you like this

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  37. Wow... thugs now operate in families! Interesting... did come across an old lady who was collecting money for her son's funeral. Saw her everyday for a couple of months.

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    1. Haha.. she must be having many sons :) Thanks a lot for visiting out here, Nikita!!

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  38. This has become a normal story in India i suppose. While going to college I see same person who can't speak and hear getting in the bus and asking for money every single day.

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    1. Yes, these things are pretty common, part of everyday life. Thanks for visiting out hre, Yamini!!

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  39. This is the classic con... they will even offer to mail back the money and give you their fake address and so on. The good thing is you'll never fall for it again! I just feel sorry for the genuine case who might need help.

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    1. Yes, some genuine people who might need help, would suffer because of such frauds. Thanks for dropping by, blogger :)

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  40. well written...sorry to hear that these days people are using such cheap ways to earn money ..and involving the family for this is really saddening ...

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    1. Glad you liked the post :) Yes, there are many families operating like that. Could also be a tem acting like a family :) Thanks for dropping by, Joseph!!

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  41. This is so spot on! It's sickening to think that able-bodied people resort to such methods to make a quick buck. Another popular scamming method in Bangaluru : Scruffy looking man in his late twenties would first get your attention by asking for directions and then spin a tall about how he got attacked by robbers on his way to Bangalore from some outback village whose name we probably never heard of and that he needed money. Next time anyone encounters a guy like this just redirect him to the nearest police station. :P

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    1. Yes Divya, there are lot of such people on the street to make quick money. We need to be little careful. Thanks a lot for dropping by and sharing your experience!!

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    1. Hehe.. Sridevi ma'am :) Thanks for dropping by!!

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  43. Hey Nice post. Hilarious. I faced the same thing but in Mumbai. Well the only difference was the size of the family and the story too. The story I got was that they had come for searching daily wages job and lost all their belongings and wanted some money to go back home and eat. I gave them some 50 bucks. One month later I saw the family again. That's when I understood what the entire thing was about. hahaha..Nowadays, there are
    many new ways of collecting money..people just want free money without having to do anything...weird..but true. :D

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    1. Glad you enjoyed the post Dipanwita :) Nice to read your story as well. %0 bucks is too much :) Thanks a lot for dropping by!!

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  44. wooaaa I never realised this was a new kind of scam. I think I was once approached but since I am wary of strangers I just walked off.

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