At 8 feet and 1 inch, Dharmendra Pratap Singh looms over people everywhere he goes. In a country like India, where everyone is desperate to get a few inches taller than they already are, this should have been a massive advantage for Singh. Unfortunately, it isn’t.
The 32-year-old has an MA degree in Hindi Literature yet is unable to find a job. He says that his height is a major factor in him not receiving proper job offers.
“After completing my studies, when I could not get a regular job, I got an offer saying that I will be paid 30 pence per day at the amusement park…I charge 10 pence for one picture. Some people pay, some run away without paying. I get hurt when people run away without paying me…Some people would say that I have grown too tall and I have become useless. People would say I have become hopeless. I used to feel bad about these things.”
Apart from working at the amusement park in a cage like structure selling photos to visitors, Singh gets a salary of Rs 10,000/- which helps him survive.
Though others in Singh’s family are of normal height, his maternal grandfather was 7’3” tall, which suggests his height is genetic. Singh was teased as a child with names like “camel” and “giraffe” and has problems making friends as many people throw taunts at him. Even his attempts to find a wife have been unsuccessful so far. He said:
“In terms of marriage, the main problem is my height. It will be very difficult to find someone who is tall enough for me. I think it is impossible…So this is also the reason why I haven’t had a girlfriend. Women are very much interested in me. They talk to me and giggle but I have never met anyone who I could look up to.”