The day Kaustuv was born, his parents’, Kaushik & Shila Dasgupta, happiness was painfully overwhelmed by a stark shock. That day they came to know that their son was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, also known as the brittle bone disease. A disease that can lead to bones breaking in the fashion of how easily a dry tree branch can be broken.
Reeling from the shock, Kastuv’s parents also attained a flash of clarity. Instead of giving into the shock, they took it eventually as god’s surreal yet blissful blessing and supported Kaustuv in every way they possibly could. They gave up their jobs as well and moved with Kaustuv to Andhra Pradesh for the betterment of his health, encouraging him to live a normal life.
Kaustuv today is an international motivational speaker, a graphical designer, an awarded singer, a renowned author and also a ‘happiness coach’ and the winner of All India Wheelchair Wanderlust Award 2016, Cavincare Ability Mastery Award 2017 and We Awards’17 – being honoured as the Persistent Enthusiast of 2017. But this persistent optimism and enthusiasm came at a great cost.
Kaustuv had his first fracture when he was 3 ½ months old, and has had over 50 fractures at 26 years of age. His fondness for dancing was abruptly disrupted when at the age of 5, doctors told him that dancing wasn’t meant for him. He then began singing, started taking classes from his mother who was a singer. He always sat and watched his friends play outside with joy. He always thought why he was different and realised his path was beyond the playing field.
In 2009, both his legs were fractured and due to some error in plastering he lost his capability to walk which led him to staying indoors for 6 long years. For the first two years he was mostly depressed, but his friend told him about computers and designs and he thought of using design to come out of depression. He did various diploma courses and the light of the world came to him in the form of a computer. It was at this time when spirituality also entered his life and gave him a higher clarity on the art of life, the purpose of his birth, the reason for his suffering and what his duty was for people. He then began motivating people, encouraging them to smile more. It gradually spread and he started getting calls globally to motivate others. “Motivation acts as a medicine. People are just running from morning to night for happiness and peace of mind, but they’re getting neither. They’re searching happiness outside, when it’s present within them”, he says.
“People see you with a disability and they start they an unintended, but sometimes harmful, plethora of pity. I always knew pity would just make me more disabled; instead independence and pride of my current state of living would liberate me”, adds Kaustuv.
Sai Kaustuv is currently doing a research on ‘Accessibility’ and how to improve it for people with disabilities. He wishes to make India a Wheelchair Friendly country and thereby wants to focus on Accessible Travelling so that the problems he faces while travelling can be avoided not only by him but also by other people who are bound to wheelchairs and other contraptions. He has a wish to work with concerned authorities to get a grasp on the scope and exposure available for accessibility. He is conducting more awareness programmes to educate people to come forward.
He needs more support and strength to spread the light of hope to all those people who have confined themselves due to lack of accessibility in their areas. He wants to work towards providing a platform to the those who possess a wealth of talent but are bogged down by their disability and lead them to contribute something they’re skilled in and benefit the society. Our conversation with Kaustuv ends with a hint of his liberating self and soul. “There is nothing impossible in the world. If you really want to achieve something, no one can stop you from achieving it. When a 90% disabled can live his life on his own conditions, so can you.”, he concludes.
As stated in the piece, Kaustuv has a plethora of talent. But, those talents are often under or unutilized. He is currently looking for employment opportunities that can not only provide him with a stable financial foundation but also help him in his cause to achieve accessibility for people with disabilities. You can get in touch with Kaustuv here.
Anshika Maheshwari | TOC[infobox]
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