Differently-Abled Artist In Rishikesh: There are times when we feel life is unfair, but we do know that all it takes is a strong desire to get through it. Differently-abled Anjana Malik is a living example of it. She doesn’t have hands but has the desire to conquer her dreams. Once a beggar on the streets of Rishikesh, this 38-year-old ‘handless artist’ gave her life a new direction with her unflinching spirit. While she could be seen as just one in a million artists, she decided to give herself a new identity that she expresses through her paintings.
Who Is Anjana Malik?
Anjana Malik is a 38-year-old differently-abled artist who was born with no hands and a deformed back and legs. Born and brought up in Nainital, a teenage Anjana decided to escape from her house as she felt her life had no meaning. Little did she know that life had other plans for her. She reached Rishikesh with the hope to add meaning to her life. Though initially, begging was her only option to sustain herself, all she could do was to sit roadside and write the name of Lord Rama on a piece of paper and people would donate her money.
One day she was sitting at the corner of the road, holding a pen between her toes, writing the name of Lord Rama when she caught the attention of a foreigner, named Stephanie, who was visiting the ‘place of sagas’ (Rishikesh).
Also read: Body Positivity: 5 Ways To Overcome Body-Shaming And Nurture Self-Love
How Did Anjana’s Life Change?
Stephanie was intrigued and impressed seeing Anjana’s will to do something. It is when Stephanie gave Anjana the idea to paint with her toes and motivated her to start painting.
“I was initially skeptical about taking this step as I wasn’t sure about it. But Stephanie helped me and guided me to learn the art of painting and actually filled colours in my life,” Anjana told Zee News.
She was the first person who believed in me and took my art seriously as she guided me through it. I will always be thankful to her,” Anjana told Zee News.
Where Is Anjana Today?
Anjana soon started painting figures of deities like Lord Shiva, Lord Ganesha, Goddess Durga, and a lot more. She soon started to sell her painting to meet her daily needs. She uses poster colours and A4-size sheets for paintings. “I don’t have to beg anymore and God sends blessings in the form of people who buy my paintings and help me meet my needs,” Anjana told Zee News.
“Once a visitor gave me the idea to put my art out on Instagram. My brother’s son is handling my Instagram account and it has helped my art reach netizens,” Anjana told Zee News. “My paintings help me earn anywhere from Rs 500 to Rs 3,000 in a day and help me take care of my expenses,” Anjana further explained.
Today, she sits near Swarg Ashram in Rishikesh and her art draws the attention of many people, and is recognised as ‘The Special Artist.’ Anjana’s art is a major source of income that helps her run a family of five. She aspires to learn and explore more about paintings in the future.