Hyderabad: Gattipally Shivpal, 42, has become the first dwarf in the country to obtain a driver’s license. The Hyderabad man, only three feet tall, has beaten all odds to become the first to complete his degree as a handicapped in his district Karimnagar in 2004.
He works at a private firm and is the eldest sibling and the only dwarf in the family.
“People used to tease me because of my height and today I am nominated for The Limca book of records and many others. Many short people are contacting me for driving training,” he told news agency ANI.
He has decided to start a driving school next year for physically handicapped people.
Shivpal came to Hyderabad in 2000 but sustaining himself was not easy. “People were not ready to offer me a job as I was handicapped. Through a friend, I got a job in a private company and now I have been working here for the past 20 years,” he told ANI.
He determined to own a vehicle and drive it after being at the receiving end of jibes by people when he booked cabs or went out with his wife. His rides would be cancelled.
Shivpal found a video uploaded by a man in the US explaining the modifications required in a car to lift the seat and other equipment up to his height.
After getting a car modified. Shivpal even learnt car driving from a friend but getting a license posed a challenge as the transport department had certain guidelines for height.
After appealing to the authorities, he obtained a learner’s license for three months and then received a driver license after giving a proper driving test with an official sitting beside him.
“Everybody has some fault in them, but finding your hidden talents and achieving them is what matters,” he remarked.