The Treasure Within

Chapter Summary

The Treasure Within is a good story written by Nissim Ezekiel. This story is mainly based on a conversation that happens between Ms Bela Raja and Hafeez Contractor. Here Ms Bela Raja is referred to as the editor of Sparsh and is a newsletter. On the other hand, Hafeez Contractor was one of the greatest architects in the place of India.

Mr Hafeez Contractor was inferior in studies and he had an inclination towards sports. The quality of his study makes him punished by the teachers and the reason for this is that he was the gang leader in each fight at school. The advice of the principal helps him in making scores in the exams of SSC. After that, he gets admission to Jai Hind College and his meeting with an architect influenced him greatly. This person finds him talented in the field of architecture and suggested joining Architecture College and thus he became one of the most successful architects in the country.

What did Hafeez Contractor have nightmares about?

Hafeez Contractor has great fears in the study of Mathematics. That is the reason he4 often get nightmares about this subject. One day he had a nightmare that he had presented in the examination of Mathematics and every question is unknown to him and he is not able in answering any of the questions.

This comment also proves that he was afraid of mathematics. A nightmare is considered to be a haunting fear as well as a bad dream. The great architect here in his school days has various nightmares about the topic of Maths.

What did the Principal say to him, which influenced him deeply?

The words of the principal influenced Hafeez Contractor greatly in his further life. The principal told him the story of his mother and her sufferings. He expressed that after the death of his father his mother brings him up with great toil. The mother told the principal that he is a grown-up boy and that is the reason he should take care of himself.

The words of the mother influence the present principal and he gives suggestions to the little boy Hafeez Contractor to focus on his study in lieu of sports. These valuable words of the principal influence the little boy greatly and he pays attention to his studies as well as marks well.

‘... that year I did not step out onto the field.’ - What was he busy doing that year?

This story presents that Hafeez Contractor was very good at sports but there comes a year when he did not participate in the sport. Past reports say that he actively participates in each sport and he has not much interest in studies. One day the motivating speeches of the principal shake him from inside and he started to focus on his studies.

This is the time when he decided to score well in the exams and in that year he did not step out onto the field. Therefore, it can be said that he was busy studying that year and he just went for papers and ate.

In the architect’s office, Hafeez Contractor was advised to drop everything and join architecture

A famous architect from his relatives suggested Hafeez Contractor to join the college of architecture. One day in the office of the architect someone was making a technical drawing and it’s related to a window. Hafeez finds some gaps in the picture and suggested the person correct their gap. They get convinced by the words of Hafeez and offer him to make a drawing of a home.

Hafeez made the work very successful and then the architects offer him to join architecture. They suggested Hafeez in joining this field by seeing his natural talent.

How did he help fellow students who had lost a button?

The fellow students who lost their buttons quickly come to Hafeez. He then used to create a button by sculpting chalks. This button looks like a real button and thus the fellow students get past dinner with a neat and clean uniform. The reason for this matter is that the boarding school is consisting of a strict dress code that has to follow for dinner as well as lunch. He thus helps the students to attend their lunch instead of losing their button.

Which rules did he break as a school boy?

Hafeez Contractor breaks many rules during the time of his schooling. He tries to copy in the hall of examination as well as plays pranks and jobs on other students. Ha had various strategies as well as planning in the school and he was involved in gang fights.

It is seen that life at the boarding school is not easy and life helps the students in developing their lives as more independent children. Hafeez here tries to break the strict rules as well as disciplines in the school.

Is it likely that someone who is original and intelligent does not do very well at school? Should such a learner be called a failure? If not, why not?

It is seen that someone who is original as well as intelligent does not do very well at school. Those learners cannot be called failures and the reason is that each student, as well as person, has their own strengths as well as weaknesses in life. The students who are brilliant in the field of academics are good at fields like this.

Hafeez Contractor was not a good student but he was good at sports as well as architecture. These parts prove that each has its own strengths and all of them cannot be expressed in the academic field. Students need to be encouraged to express their talents and they should not be called failures.


Q1. What is the significance of the title The Treasure Within?

Ans. The title of the story The Treasure Within has great significance. The title itself refers to the hidden talent within the students. It also presents that each student has their area of internet and way of learning.

Q2. What was the role of Mrs. Gupta?

Ans. Mrs. Gupta plays important role in the life of Hafeez Contractor. She was greatly impressed by the sketches of Hafeez that he used to make during his childhood. She finds that Hafeez is good at the works of sketching and she advised him to become an architect.