Thiruvalla: While conquering greater heights in football, PR Vishnuraj is bogged down by the struggles of his family.
As a striker spearheading the attack for FC Kerala in I-League 2nd Division, Vishnuraj is formidable. But it is the hard realities of life that makes him vulnerable to life’s vagaries and vicissitudes.
Ironically, the motorcycle he won as a prize for being the best state player could not be taken to his home because there is no road to his house.
Vishnuraj's house is located behind Paliekkara Santhikavadam on a five-cent plot they had bought some 10 years ago. Since there is only a footpath towards his house, he has to leave his bike on the road.
The house has been built using the Rs 2 lakh granted by the municipality. But work on the house is not over yet and there is no electricity connection either.
The house has not even been included in the government's 'power for all' scheme. Though the district collector had directed authorities concerned to provide necessary lamp posts to supply power to their house, nothing has been done on that count.
He hasn't got any benefits that are due as a Dalit. Six lamp posts are need to supply power to his house. The work didn't take off because of objections from his neighbors.
Vishnuraj's father was an autrorickshaw driver. But he is unable to work ever since he was detected with heart disease. Though doctors have advised a surgery, but the family can’t afford one.
Vishnuraj's mother Krishnakumari runs the household working as a domestic help. He couldn't even afford to buy a boot. Whenever he is not playing he works in a catering unit. He bought his first pair of boots with the savings from his job.
Vishnuraj has been playing football for the past 10 years and was chosen as the best player of Kannur University while he was doing his graduation at Payyanur college. After college, he was playing for Cochin Port Trust when Indian team coach Narayana Menon spotted the player in him and invited him to FC.
He is now honing his skills at Thrissur training camp. Even when he is dribbling the ball to penetrate the defense to create a scoring opportunity, there are many goals that seems far off for him -- father's treatment, a proper road to his house, electricity connection and better playing gear. Not one to be cowed down by the difficulties of life, Vishnuraj is waiting for better days. Ph: 8848768494