From a quaint village in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, a team of 6 assembled to construct the majestic wooden structures that make DLRC what it is today. Kishore bhaiya (as we endearing refer to him) and his team have been in the carpentry business for more than 25 years - as their family has been doing this for generations - and in the last 5, they began working with DLRC. Despite the oldest bhaiya being 49 years old, they all work 12 hours (on average); a day in their life starts at 9 am and goes on till 10 pm sometimes too! They begin by cooking their own food for 2 meals, working till late, and then making fresh dinner before continuing their work. Sounds difficult, doesn’t it? But they all love their job for it not only encompasses the physical building of the structures, but also ideating and designing them.
Kishore bhaiya stated that “the initial design for the structures was mine, but I then asked for requirements from the co-founders and asked for my team's opinions because that’s what teams do. We work together.” This perspective was heart-warming to hear as it indicated how, not only DLRC’s faculty and students follow its values, but so do the carpenters.
Have you ever wondered how the wood, glass and all other material is brought in, scrubbed, worked with and polished? Kishore bhaiya explained the process from start to finish, as he narrated his experiences of building the vibrant DLRC campus. First, several containers of wood come from Bombay to Pune. He then goes to Pune city and chooses the type of wood that best meets his requirements - sturdy, has no holes, is not damaged or infested and so on - as no one else knows the specifics of how the wood should be except him. The wood is then treated, cut, sanded, polished and used to make the skeleton of the structure, and later, the whole structure. Glass, on the other hand, requires less work to acquire and use. The measurements are fixed in mms and all he does is go to the city to pick out the glass, bring it back, and then place it in its rightful place. When large deliveries need to be made or material needs to be transported from the city, he sends someone to handle it. All in all, each structure takes about 2 months from start to finish, as is evident by the intricate, amazing and meticulous work that the team of carpenters do.
When asked what Kishore bhaiya enjoyed most about his job, his instant response was 1 word: “lakdi” (wood in Hindi). When he elaborated, the love for his job was clearly visible and so touching; “I love my job. But what I love most is the wood. The minute I touch it, I know I just want to work with it. I love getting it, touching it, cutting it, smoothening it, joining it, measuring and marking it, and polishing it. From start to finish, I just love the aspect of wood. And of course, everything else is also there” laughed Kishore bhaiya.
Without Kishore bhaiya and his team, DLRC’s USP (its campus) would be impossible. So next time you look up at the roof, or the structures or the stairways, be sure to mutter a “thank you.” I know I do :)
Writer: Avishi Dalmia