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Meet India's own Spiderman

Last updated on: July 31, 2009 

Meet India's own Spiderman

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Vicky Nanjappa in Bengaluru

You could call him India's Spiderman, but he prefers calling himself Kothi Manusha or Monkey Man.

Jyoti Raju, who originally hails from Tamil Nadu, attempted to end his life by jumping off the Chitradurga fort, 230 km from Bengaluru. It was then that he realised what he was capable of.

Twenty-three year old Raju's entry into the small town of Chitradurga is interesting.


Image: Jyoti Raju climbs the Chitradurga fort
Photographs: Vicky Nanjappa
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"I am from Tamil Nadu. I used to dream of the Chitradurga fort as a child. At the age of 18, I left Chennai and came in search of this fort. I landed in Chitradurga by chance and realised that the fort at this place is the same one I used to dream about as a child. I worked as a construction labourer for a while here."

"However, I was not happy with what I was doing and went into depression, which prompted me to end my life. This was the turning point for me."

"I went atop the fort and decided to jump to death. However, when I did that I tried saving myself, and it worked. With just the help of my hands I managed to cling on to the fort wall. That day I realised that there was something special. "


Image: Carefree climb to the top

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"Over the next few years, I watched monkeys very closely and learnt the art of climbing up walls without the support of any external device; with my hands."

Raju is a treat to watch. He climbs walls like a monkey and ensures that everyone has their heart in their mouth when he does a somersault in the middle of his climb up a steep wall.

Today, he is more of an entertainer at the fort in Chithradurga.


Image: People watch as Raju goes about his show

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"My aim is to do something for my country before I die. At present I climb up the fort's walls, do my tricks and entertain people,"

"You can see for yourself that I climb up these walls with no equipment or any protection. I face a lot of financial problems and all I survive on is the tip given by my admirers. I hope the future has something better for me in store," says the Monkey Man.

Image: Jyoti Raju aka Desi Spiderman aka Monkey Man

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