30-year old Manish Dhameja, a resident of Uttar Pradesh, has managed to enter the Guinness Book of World Records, courtesy his collection of coins. According to Hindustan Times, Dhameja has earned the Guinness Book recognition for amassing over a million coins through the years by sheer hard work and enterprise. Dubbed ‘King of Coins’ by the media, Dhameja has a massive collection of bi-metallic coins which got him into the esteemed book of records. He also happens to have a big collection of single metal coins. Speaking to HT, Dhameja, who is an ardent admirer of former President, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam said that he felt glad to have received such a recognition for his ‘achievement’. He also expressed his astonishment that a hobby of his would bring such honour to him.
According to the report, Dhameja has coins which date back as to the 16th century. Born in UP’s Bahraich, he was brought up in a middle-class family in Lakhimpur Kheri and is an executive in a public sector enterprise. HT further quoted Dhameja saying that he had fallen in love with this hobby in childhood. Speaking about the very beginning of his coin collecting hobby, Dhameja says that when he was just 5 years old, his father had a piggy bank which was full of coins, something that he had received from his great grandfather. He says that it was his great grandfather that had started the habit of collecting coins in the family. Admitting that coins were like a treasure to him, Dhameja says that he had once broken his father’s piggy bank and hidden the coins in the store room.
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Speaking about his story, Dhameja recalls his school days when he had been asked to create something out of waste material and he had presented all the collected coins as his craft and found himself being appreciated by teachers and friends alike. It was at this moment that he started taking proper interest in coins. Dhameja is currently pursuing a PhD in coin and museum management and has plans to set up a coin museum.