27
Apr
19

The Colour of my Blood is Hindustani!

“Translation is not original creation – that is what one must remember. In translation, some loss is inevitable.” – Joseph Brodsky

I invariably receive some sort of a gentle grumpy communication from my non-Hindi speaking/reading subscribers about my Hindi posts. I understand and acknowledge their irritation but Hindi is my mother-tongue and every now and then, my thoughts and words flow better for me in my own language. I can’t always give a translation in English. It would become tedious. However, this is an exception and here is a translated version of my last post.

Incidentally, why don’t the ‘gentle grumpies’ ever use the comments option?

*

Today

I find all my colleagues

to be blind

but

when I am alone

innumerable, bodiless eyes

continue to stare at me.

In such predatory times –

whom should I hand over

my capital of beliefs?

 – ‘Vishwas’ page 103, from the poetry collection ‘Shana Ghunghroo’ by late Prof. Ramesh Kumar Sharma

My father and my eldest maternal uncle were very close friends and their principles, high intellect, and personalities have had a tremendous influence in my life.

My uncle played an active role in the Freedom Movement as a soldier and was just 15 years old when he was arrested and incarcerated for 59 days in the Agra Kotwali (main police station). He endured harsh physical torture – continuously laid naked on ice blocks; hung upside down; needles being pierced into his nails; punched and beaten with a stick.

Even after severe injuries to both his wrist bones, the left hip joint and ankles, he refused to become a government witness and approver.

Talking about this time, Gandhiji wrote an article in the ‘Harijan’ stating that he could not call to mind this type of torture being inflicted on any child of this age.

*

A few days ago, I met some ‘impotent nationalists’ or should I say, that drunk on the poisonous chalice of Hindutva, these double-crossing mercenaries who have never breathed the pure air of diligence towards their Nation and whose lives have never been touched by sound education, right direction, correct thinking – had come to enquire.

*

Threatening enquiries!

Enquiry as to why, despite being a Hindu, I did not have a saffron flag on the main gate?

Enquiry as to why I was purchasing vegetable from a Muslim?

Enquiry as to why I wore pathani suits?

Enquiry as to why I kept in touch with Naseemben who had lost her family and house in the post-Godhra genocide?

Enquiry as to why I made no donations for the religious public feasts?

Enquiry as to why I was not a devotee of Modi?

*

And, giving me information too!

Information about my family and kin.

Information about the likelihood of my being beaten-up again.

Information about how I would not be able to get a job anywhere.

Information about other ‘traitors’ like me who were also being watched.

Etc……………

*

I asked them about Section 19(1) (a) of the Indian Constitution, but received no response. The fools did not even realize that their information about ‘there were others’ like me, gave my soul an unbounded sensation of peace and satisfaction. And, that is why something must have reflected in my eyes because of which these gutter-snipes got distracted and left.

*

It is unbelievable the way these arrogant saffronized lumpen elements are being nurtured. How long will they be nursed?

Who all are being watched by whom?

Why are we so spineless?

Will we have to now, even look at our shadows with suspicion?

*

I remain cautious; nonetheless being in a constant state of alertness is also tiring. But, I am not scared and will not bow to these worms till my last breath.

The blood of my ancestors flowing in my veins keeps my doctrines alive and I am not afraid of death. My nature does not support fear and blackmail. However, it is a fact that my mind does get rattled and I worry about my kin. It is not a nice feeling if some other person were to suffer because of my ideologies. Many a times, I have endured by numbing myself to reach the extent of the limit of limits. Not to forget the circumstances that have made me undergo excessive mental distress.

My heart shrieks out and I am over-whelmed with melancholy and the manifestation of bad dreams unveils itself. From time-to-time, the violent storms within these nightmares becomes too much, especially when the hidden past of my personal life cannot be easily controlled.

And, because my blood is flowing in somebody else’s veins or the legacy of my thinking is flourishing in other minds, I am ready to pass the torch.


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