PETALING JAYA, June 21 — Shahrul Aziz does not have a job, home or money.
But the man from Kedah who moved to Shah Alam and lives in his beat-up Proton Saga uses some of the money he gets from passers-by to buy food for his friend.
A stray cat that he has named Puteri.
“I’ve had four or five cats with me in my hometown in Kedah and I love spending time with them,” he told Malay Mail.
“Here in Shah Alam, I try to keep aside a portion of donation money that I receive from passers-by to get cat food and sometimes, random people would feed Puteri,” he said.
Puteri has been with Shahrul since he found her at a Shah Alam rest and service area last month.
Shahrul, 53, who moved from his hometown in Kedah to Shah Alam last November to search for better pastures but was unlucky after getting rejected for two driver jobs.
Speaking to Malay Mail, he said that no matter his circumstances and age, he is persistent in wanting a driver’s job as he is willing to work and pour in the hours.
“I used to work as a lorry driver back in Kedah but I was paid based on the trips I went and it wasn’t enough for me, so I headed to Shah Alam after being called for an interview.
“But I was rejected for a few driver job applications when I came here and there are days where I don’t have enough to eat and would even starve for the night.
“Sometimes, I would head to food stalls and get a simple meal and would owe the stall owners later,” he said.
His story became viral on Twitter yesterday after a Shah Alam man Mohamad Faris Mohamad Fuard, who wanted to grab a drink in McDonalds saw him walking on the streets.
Happy Father’s Day.— komeng (@mohamadfarisss) June 20, 2021
Today’s the last day of Mcd’s RM2 for selected drinks so I went out to buy. As I reached a traffic light I saw a man walking towards the cars asking for donation but I didn’t get close to him as the light turned green- pic.twitter.com/pu37cYEj5M
Mohamad Faris, 24, also a cat lover, stopped his car after he noticed Puteri in the cage and became curious about the homeless man and his cat.
Speaking to Malay Mail, he said that it was Puteri that caught his attention and made him stop his car to talk to the man.
“I have a soft spot for cats and would sometimes bring cat food and feed strays whenever I see them.
“But after having a 20-minute conversation with Shahrul, I felt so sad for him and decided to buy some bread for him, and a one-kilogramme packet of cat food.
“I decided to write about him on Twitter because I just wanted to express how grateful I am to have a roof over my head and to be thankful for the little things I have,” he added.
But the 24-year-old didn’t expect that many would be touched by what he wrote and would even think of donating cash to the man.
Since yesterday, a total of RM2,000 has been collected so far which he would channel to Shahrul.
Kota Anggerik assemblyman Mohd Najwan Halim also reached out to the 24-year-old saying that he would help the homeless man.
Many Twitter users flooded Mohamad Faris’s Twitter account and thanked him for his good deed and generosity.