SriKanth Bolla: The Real Life Daredevil!

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Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.

-Srikanth Bolla

Have you ever heard of the Daredevil? A famous superhero who in spite of being blind, overcomes every obstacle and risea as a man of extreme caliber?

Such is a story of Srikanth Bolla!

This 24-year-old blind young man believes that one should always focus on his strengths and rise. Those who criticize are best treated with self-victory and recognition.

Srikant was born in a small village in Andhra Pradesh to a family of farmers. As the village orthodoxy goes, they were cursed many fellow villagers for giving birth to a blind boy.

The villagers used to say:

He cannot see. Let him die. He is a curse for the eyes of many.

But everytime anyone uttered this nonsense, his grandmother would become a rebel and stand by her unfortunate grandchild.

To her,  Srikanth was a dear kid who needs care and love. He was special because he had only her yes to realize what is really around him.
But problems for Srikanth were yet to deepen and in school, most of his fellow classmates used to stay away from him.

Srikanth had a childhood full of solitude and sadness because he always felt alienated from other children.

I was a child wanting to go out on the field and play with other children but they won’t treat me like I even do exist.

After realizing his misery, his uncle suggested his parents send him to a blind school in Hyderabad.

So Srikanth was sent 400 km away from his home in a totally new environment where he became severely homesick.

Unable to adjust to the new environment he even tried to run away from the school ignoring his safety.

Upon finding out his uncle asked him softly:

Alright, lets just run away from here. But what then? What kind of life will you have at home?

And it was that moment when everything changed for him. He promised himself that he will get excellent in everything that comes his way.

I just worked hard, and never looked back.

He topped the 10th board exams in his school. and did his 12th in arts. But that was not his voluntary choice as well- Indian education protocols don’t allow visually-impaired to study science.

But then again- he had not forgotten his promise.

I could see no obstacle. I had no eyes, right? So I moved on pretty easily.

He later filed a petition and fought until the law changed for all Indian students. He scored 98% in his 12th board exams.
It was probably Srikanth’s fortune that nothing came as easy to him.

He wanted to pursue engineering from the top institute of the country but was rejected by the IITs for his blindness.

I Knew it WAS coming. Wasn’t really new for me!

So he applied to Massachusetts Institute of Technology and became the first ever international blind student to study in the MIT.

After finishing his studies he deliberately overlooked offers from the corporate sector and returned India.

He founded Samanvai, a non-profit organization in Hyderabad, to provide individualized, need-based and goal-oriented support services to students with multiple disabilities.

By now Srikanth had proved the world that confidence and willpower are all that person needs to sail through every darkness.

Later he decided to take on the issue of the high ratio of unemployment of the disabled.

In 2012, Srikanth started Bollant Industries Pvt. Ltd. to provide livelihood to the physically challenged and handicapped.

The company manufactures eco-friendly products such as areca leaf plates, cups, trays, and dinnerware, betel plates, and disposable plates, spoons, and cups.

Later it also added adhesives and printing inks/printing products to their portfolio.

Then an angel investor Ravi Mantha related his opportunities with Srikanth’s business model and vision. Not only he invested in the company but also guided Srikanth to make his company even bigger and more profitable.

Ravi taught me several corporate business modules and generic rules to beat the corporate heat.

Today, Bollant employs over 150 disabled individuals and has five manufacturing units. Its annual sales have already crossed Rs 70 million.

After this humongous successSrikanth also got funded by Ratan Tata and received the best entrepreneur award for 2016.

The real-life daredevil now says:

There was a time when the whole world mocked me and told me I can never do anything. My achievements are the answer to all of them.

Yes indeed!