Learnings from Chickpet

When I see a well educated politician, talking like an illiterate, I think of Chickpet. When I see an educated young man of complaining about the non-availabilty of employment, I think of Chickpet.

Chickpet in Bengaluru is known as the business hub of the City with more than 1000 shops. It always remains crowded with people, who throng this place to buy clothes, furniture, toys etc at a wholesale price.

A research to understand how the shop keepers do their business here has thrown startling facts. Most of them belong to Rajasthan and are in their teenage and are school dropouts with no proper qualifications.

But all of them are fluent in Kannada. They have not learnt it in any school, but simply by talking to customers. Some of them can speak Hindi, English, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam too, and again by talking to customers. They have learnt the art of calculating values and discounts without using calculators.

Their monthly turnover is around Rs 8 to 9 lakhs per month, and during festivals it shoots up to Rs 15 lakhs with profit upto Rs. 4 lakh per month.

Interestingly none of them wants to complete their education, as they consider it a sheer wastage of time and money. They invest both time and money in business.

Then what is the moral of the story? The moral is that without higher education, one may-

1. not remain jobless.
2. earn in lakhs
3. have no fear of getting fired
4. master good communication skills.

I have come across a number of tea and samosa vendors who earn Re 1 for one samosa or a cup of tea, ending up with a daily income of Rs 4000 plus. They have purchased land and houses, and all other things of luxury.

But, but.. I don’t want to belittle the importance of education. Who knows if equipped with higher qualifications, they might have done far better. Recognising its importance, a vada pao vendor in Mumbai has sent his both kids abroad for higher education. So is the case with most of the successful businessmen in India, who themselves had no professional degrees, but their kids have been educated and trained abroad.

The fact, however, remains that a qualification is not more than a piece of paper, if the education is not utilised properly. Even the so-called uneducated rural people can give you a few pearls of wisdom that highly educated intellectuals may not give.

–Kaushal Kishore

image: pixabay


  1. Your poignant today’s post, Kaushal, reminded me of the story written by the famous writer,
    William Somerset Maugham, called “The Verger”. It is a story of a simple man doing a good job at the vicarage, who is fired by the new vicar when he discovers that the verge is illiterate. After losing his lowly paid job, the verger becomes a shopkeeper and becomes very rich. While he has no formal education, he has plenty of worldly wisdom obtained through intelligent observation.
    When his banker wants him to sign for a better deal, he tells him that he cannot write, The banker
    exclaims: “Where would you be, if you could write?”. The man’s answer: “I would be still a poor verger!”
    I love every word of your post, Kaushal!


    Liked by 3 people

    1. So firing by the new vicar proved to be a blessing in disguise for the verger. An inspirational story indeed. It’s so apt here. Thank you, Joanna for sharing it. You have stories ready for every occasion. Really great! Thanks for appreciating the post.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The unorganised business sector is minting billions. Entire Supply chains are being managed without any formal degrees. But then the education is not limited to books. There are people who learn on the job and Excel. So education is a must , how you get educated is not relevant. One may go to the best B school and still remain illiterate and there aee many who have succeeded learning from the streets.
    Very relevant subject you have touched .

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Very well said. I completely agree with you. You have beautifully elaborated the point. Education is not only institutional. Thank you so much for sharing your valuable feedback.😊🙏


  3. Wow…. a lovely post….! I love the first paragraph very much and why such a situation make you think of Chickpet 🙂👏
    It is so true that education is important but it is not the ultimate thing. What we do with that is matters the most.
    It is one’s willpower to do what is needed to make their living better or (others living in the case of politicians🙂)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well said, Ganga. I concur with you that institutional education is not all in one. There are so many things including willpower that are necessary to make that education useful. A struggle for the very existence gives a lot of learnings for further paving the way. Thank you for reading and sharing your beautiful thoughts 😊💐

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this story, KK! ❤ Learning should be a lifelong pursuit, no matter what our education. My grandmother had only a second-grade education, but she had learned to read and was self-educated. She taught herself many valuable skills and was an amazing woman, admired and respected in her town.

    I have believed for many years that everyone I meet knows something I don't. I am willing to learn from anyone. I also value formal education and paid a lot of dues to earn my degrees and become a teacher.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m really grateful to you for posting this comment, Cheryl. My mother, like your grandmother, was not even middle pass, but she taught me all subjects till I passed eighth standard by dint of her own efforts.

      I also appreciate your will to learn from anyone and everyone. All have something unique. That’s why people now talk of collective wisdom. Thank you.😊💖

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I agree, there are so many people who have learnt nuances of success from the Life University. Experience makes the education perfect. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.


  5. You’re right. My people use to say that: “passing six is not passing sense”. In other words it means that education is far much different from real intelligent. So, with qualifications or not, who wants to be successful will surely be. Although, education is good, but it’s not a guarantee that you’ll be wealthy with your qualifications. Wealth lies in destiny. Nevertheless, your post is awesome!


    1. Thank you for your appreciation. I fully resonate with your views that education doesn’t guarantee one’s success. I’m glad you shared your beautiful reflections.

      Liked by 1 person

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