Bengaluru: The will to succeed, combined with hard work, can take anyone places. 

29-year-old Niyaz Panakaje is a prime example. His life has been really hard. In fact, in standard 1 itself, he started working in order to make ends meet. 

Today, he is a PhD in commerce for his paper, Role of cooperative banking in socio-economic development of rural Muslim communities — A study in DK district of Karnataka), at the 39th convocation of Mangalore University.   

“I am the youngest and always wanted to become a teacher. I knew poverty would stand in my way, so I was ready to work for a living from childhood itself,” said Niyaz, as quoted by Times of India. 

He has sold fish, been a mason and also an auto driver. 
“In class one, I was a domestic help in a neighbour’s house, then took up work related to building rings for wells,” he recalled. In high school and PU, Niyaz worked in paddy fields and delivered newspapers,” he adds. 

He enrolled for a PhD in 2016. Though he was entitled for a scholarship, he says, he would not get the amount in time. That is when he had to work as a mason. 

“I was entitled to a scholarship of Rs 25,000 but it was never credited on time. Hence, for the first two years of my PhD, I sold fish in Madanthyar and transported to Kerala. I also worked as a mason,” he said.

It is people like him who show the way when times are not favourable. The sheer grit and determination has helped him attain great heights.