A FIFA-accredited referee drives an autorickshaw to make ends meet.

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Hard to believe, but this can happen in India.
M B Santhosh Kumar, a native of Kottayam district in Kerala, has the distinction of being one of four FIFA accredited referees in India.


Santhosh Kumar has refereed over 100 national matches, even ones featuring football stars like Lionel Messi, Thomas Mueller and Bhaichug Bhutia. He is the only referee from Kerala with FIFA accreditation.

Today, the 37-year-old Santhosh Kumar’s ambition of refereeing a World Cup match, a dream nurtured by every International referee, is fading away fast, as he struggles to make a living, doing double shifts as a caretaker and an autorickshaw driver, to look after his four-member family.

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