This councillor doubles up as a carpenter too

For Andrews Kalathilparambil, the councilor of Maradu Municipality, being in power does not mean he should quit his traditional family occupation of carpentry. On days when the councillor gets free time, the carpenter in him takes over and gets to work.

His guiding policy is that politicians should work for a living and not see politics as a source of livelihood.

“I’m paid an honorarium of Rs 2,800- Rs 3,000 per month for being the councillor of Ward — VIII (Maradu municipality). My livelihood, however, is carpentry, which helps me earn around Rs 20, 000 a month,” the 40-year-old Congress councillor said.

Born into a poor family, Andrews spent his childhood at a Christian Orphanage in Vaikom and it was there that he learnt the basics of carpentry. “I had to study in an orphanage following the death of my father six months after I was born. My mother, a daily wage earner, found it too difficult to carry on,” Andrews, who has been a panchayat member since 2005, recalled.

The Congress leader started doing carpentry for a living in 1987 after passing his class 10 exams from St Vincent Balabhavan, Thottakam, Vaikom, and since then there has been no looking back.
Now some of his work includes the new 10, 000 sq ft building at KINFRA and Choice Group Flats in Tripunithura, the tallest in south Asia, among others.

Andrews, however, makes it a point to be “available” to people at all times. “I’m just a phone call away and however busy I may be, I attend to their problems.”
He says his work as a carpenter might be a reason for his popularity among the residents.

He is yet to taste defeat in any elections, whether it's to the board of directors of a co-operative or the panchayat elections.

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