June 20, 2006

Inspiration for the day

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M.A.Saleem, Salim Builders, Saligram, Chennai

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With an Ambassador car as makeshift office and 6 workers as assistants, M.A.Saleem had ventured into construction field in Chennai 17 years ago.  And one of the first things he did was to buy a plot of land at Saligram and construct a house in the traditional Kerala style for Rs.16000 with the intention to live there with his family. 

Seeing the completed structure, Manoharan, a Tamilian, felt an irresistible urge to own it.  Despite repeated denials, he persisted and finally purchased it from Salim for Rs.75000.

That was the defining moment of Salim's career. Since then he did not have to turn back.  Today, with about 1000 workers and 100 office staff, 'Salim Builders' is an active presence in Saligram.  And during this time, he has constructed over 4000 flats / houses in this area.

Despite persistent suggestion to expand his area of activity outside Saligram, Salim has stuck on to his chosen arena.  “This is my area.  Here I can reach any construction site within 5 minutes.  And my customers can talk to me directly any time,” he says.

Salim considers his father Abdul Majid as the leading light of life.  A school teacher of meager earnings with 3 children, his father never wavered from the path of righteousness and justice.  “He taught me to look at rise and fall with an equal mind,” he says.

He considers the staff and workers as extension of his family.  Every year, he constructs and gifts a house costing about Rs.10 lakhs to one senior employee.  10 temples, a church and a mosque in the locality have been constructed by his firm.

In Salim’s office room one can find atleast 3 statues of Ganapathi.  “I am a Muslim,” he says and adds: “A Muslim who strongly believes in the universal brotherhood of man.”


Courtesy: K.A.Johny, Mathrubhumi, March 27, 2006
Contributed by: Administrator


"Like father, like son."