Inspiring is when someone gets up from the darkness of negative vibes and erases it with thundering willpower and adds light of positive vibes to show a way to destined folk. Arun Raj Shetty a versatile dancer and dance teacher, may not be famous in the sense millions of people deems famous, but still live with, battle, and overcome all the odds every single day of his life. He is the real hero of real life.
Some insults pay the high costs and can change an entire life. When he was studying in 6th standard there was a dance programme at school. His mom a single parent and working as a private teacher could not afford the costume for the dance programme. The Angry teacher asked little Arun to step out of the stage which made a wound in the heart of little one. Classmates refused to become friends due to poor clothing. Another painful incident was - there was clay model exhibition at school and he prepared Chitradurga Fort out of clay. When he was doing an exhibition of a model he prepared, his trousers tore. Everyone laughed around. Due to frustration and heartache he left home and went to Bangalore.
He was roaming here and there in Bangalore and one fine day he was watching dance performance near one dance school. Then he thought and decided something.
He came back to Shimoga and joined Rap Beads Dance School. That time the fee was only 50 rupees per month but it was a big amount for him to pay. To pay that dance school fees he started selling Mangoes, Chakkuli, and Kodubale etc without the knowledge of his mom. Two years he studied in that dance school. His dance teacher did not support him in a fear of new school by Arun. He sent him to only one competition .It was in Tumkur where met some unknown person and that person trained Arun for the dance of actor Shankar Nag. The interesting thing is Arun got first place and that person got 2nd place.
He got motivated and started to learn different styles. He is not only good in dance but sports too. He used to attend sports events in different parts of the country. In Poona, he met Late Mr.Robert who taught him how to teach dance, freestyle dance course for 3 months. Because of this, he got attendance shortage and flunked in class.
He finished various dance courses in Thiruvanamalai and Bangalore and made a group open the dance school in Shimoga. It was First Step Dance Institution. But unfortunately, the team broke due to misunderstandings.
In 2007, he met with an accident and became bedridden for 9 months due to a reaction of tablets. His leg was twisted. He used to take 3 doses of 200 mg pain killer daily. It was the same time he got selected for ZEE Kannada reality show, Kuniyona Bara. But due to an accident could not attend and got depression. He thought the dance was over. Twice he attempted suicide and survived.
His life turned by Dr.Ishwar who runs a Sanidhya clinic in Shimoga. Doctor gave hope of walking and even more miraculously, he could walk after 3 months. But his weight was 110 kg and unable to go to dancing school.
Inspiration is getting back after one is fallen. In 2009, he decides to participate in District Level Competition in Ambedkar Nagar Shimoga. It's running an incredible race at a competitive level after not even able to get up out of bed. But again his leg twisted on the stage. Mr.Dorai who was a judge of the show rushed to the stage and admitted him to a hospital. After recovery, he decides to open the dance school in LVS Nagar Shimoga with Channesh Acharya in the memory of his friend Abhi who drowned in water. And names new dance school as First Step. But one of the persons from previous dance group opposed the same name. Hundred people worked on the renaming of the dance school and changed it to Step Holders.
He had physical and mental sufferings of his own. He washed vessels in hotels, done mason work etc. Best thing is he chose to draw lessons from these and reach out to kids with a similar or worse plight. He vows to start Anavarana Summer Camp on the memory of his dear teacher who used to provide school uniform for him when he was in school. Anavarana picks children from slums and provides everything to them from cloth to sandals, teach manners, make them come to school and provide a platform to mingle with children who come from well off family. End of the camp they conduct an event for them. Along with this Anavarana helps kids who can’t afford school fee. The motto of this is to make needy children one among others and help them to stand with dignity.
Arun says Dance given him identity and changed his life. He got a job offer from Audi Company for Marketing Department. Got offer in Poona, Bangalore as a trainer .But rejected everything to build dance school.
“You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life”― Winston S. Churchill. This quote goes well with Arun. He got criticism. Few envied and attacked his class. Some made fun of it. But he started painting his dream out of the mudslinging that people has done to him.
Step Holders got 3 branches in Shimoga and one in Bhadravathi .They got 16 best trainers. Step Holders is recognized by AIDCF, New Delhi and affiliated to KDSA, Bengaluru.
He has done M.Com from Kuvempu University. Apart from working as Business Officer in Fincorp, holds partnership in Arunodaya Events Company.
He was Karnataka State Kabaddi Captain in 2005-06 under 16-category.Played National Level Kabaddi and Handball.
Participated in State Level – Kho-Kho 28 times. Played Leather Cricket till 2nd Division. Completed Junior Exam in Music. Awarded Rashtrapathi Award in NCC and All India Level Best Cadet. Rashtrapathi Award in NSS, Scouts & Guides too.
In Martial Arts has a Black belt in Motatai, Judo, and Taekwondo.
His message to society is, “Help others without selfishness. Don’t judge people by cloth and money. Do not discriminate.”