Mangaluru: There are very few people who enjoy what they do because after sometime, professions turns to be monotonous. While many seek an escapade from their mundane of life, meet Shantappa Babu, a traffic cop, who knits humorous poetic and short story delights for his readers. What is his muse? Well, his duty on road gives him enough food for thought to script his feelings that too encapsulated as funny rib ticklers.Shanthappa had struck a symphonic balance between his work and his passion. The testimony for this is his book named 'Mast Maja Traffic' that was released in 2015 bringing to reading humorous doses of his real life experiences as a traffic cop.
All of 37, literature and writing is an integral part of Shantappa's life. The traffic jams, congestion, violators, noisy horns.... the components that drive people crazy have become inspiration for Shanthappa.
Speaking to Newskarnataka.com, this 'Mast Maja' traffic cop says that doing what one loves is very important.
Born to Babu and Yamuna, in Sajipa Padu village in Bantwal taluk, Shanthappa discovered his love for reading at a very tender age.
“I finished my early education in Sajipa government school and then SSLC and PUC in Sajipa government college. Due to unavoidable circumstances, I had to discontinue my studies. I joined the police department in 2002 after finishing ITI and a computer course. My first posting was at Kadri Traffic East station and I worked there for nine years. Then I was transferred to Traffic West station, Bunder. After 5 years, I was promoted and transferred to the newly-inaugurated Traffic South station," says Shanthappa donning a smile.
Recalling his days reading kids' magazines like 'Bala Mangala' and 'Chandamama', Shanthappa says that these books first inspired him to write as a child. As a shy kid, Shanthappa had scribbled his poetries and short stories, but never dared to read it to anyone.
But renowned writer and humorist Bhuvaneshwari Hegde gave that first push to Shanthappa to write more and publish his work because they were excellent. "I had shown Buvaneshwari Hegde my writings. She was the one who gave him the much required motivation to write more and show what I write to the world," says Shanthappa.
Since then, there has been no looking back. Shanthappa documents the world through his comical lenses and words. With the help of Dakshina Kannada Sahithya Parishat, Shanthappa got his first book published in 2015 in Kateel.
However, Shanthappa says that the police department too stood by him and supported him in his passion.
“Former ACP(Traffic) Uday Naik encouraged me a lot to continue writing. Even the present ACP is very much supportive. Former police commissioner S Murugan too helped me. He was one of the persons who bought my book to show his support,"says Shanthappa adding that he has never made compromises between his duty and passion.
"When I don this cap of traffic cop, I am a cop. But, once I return home after my duty, I let the poet inside me free to write what I document in my mind throughout the day," he says adding that he always wanted to pursue his education that he had discontinued long ago.
"I completed my graduation through distance education and also attempted KAS examination twice. Presently, I am pursuing MA in Kannada through distance education in Mangaluru University," he says.
Shanthappa, before signing off wanted to use Newskarnataka.com as medium to convey an important message to the general public. He says that a civilised society must follow rules and regulations.
"A person wearing good dress, owning an expensive car and a big house is great but he has to have them legally. So follow rules set in the society. Follow traffic norms. Wear helmets and don’t drink and drive. Don’t park vehicles in ‘No Parking’ area. Don’t risk your life by over speeding or any other reason. Think of your parents and people depending on you," he says.
He had a word of advice to his colleagues too and that is: "There are police officers in our department who are good at singing, acting etc. We need to keep these interests alive within us and not allow our hectic schedule kill it."
ACP(Traffic) Tilak Chandra speaking to Newskarnataka.com about Shanthappa did not just laud the young cop, but also opined that he was one of the best writers. "When we are stressed out and busy with our work, these hobbies help us and we are always in support of these talent cops," he said.
Kudos Shantappa Babu - the traffic cop and the humorist who spills laughter pearls just like that!!!
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