JAI JAWAAN

​I expect a lot of flak for posting this but… When a young chooses to be a jawaan; while undergoing training he’s made aware of the obvious: At any unprecedented moment, he would be expected to sacrifice his life for our nation. 


His parents, wife and children are nurtured throughout his life on the same virtues. They might not always agree (or sleep peacefully) in lieu of the risks that run with their son/father/husband on the battlefield but nevertheless, will always respect him for the very same like the entire nation.

In addition to this, there are MANY (trust me) soldiers who lose their lives while protecting us at international borders and even within the domestic territory but pass on to the heavens without any national recognition, only because it isn’t always (though mostly it is) Pakistan which attacks.

Maoists, Nepalese (because many Pakistani terrorists enter into India by taking advantage of porous IndoNepal border) and Chinese borders are threats too. Soldiers who become martyrs while being posted at north eastern frontiers are in no way less than a soldier who is serving at IndoPak border. They’ve families too!

Their families hardly receive any grants from the state (centre is obliged to grant Rs 5 lacs). Moreover, remittances in all glory, are a way to honour the martyr posthumously. In no way, it is the duty of the state to grant sums to the families which have incurred the loss of a son or a husband or a father with amounts compensatory enough such that the bearers of loss can carry a dignified life for forthcoming years.

Be it a widow refusing 5 lacs INR grant from the Nitish government or a mother trying to force it under the state executives’ throat to offer compensation; the demand is completely unjustified (a modest, sensitive plea shall be considered acceptable though) and is a passive attempt to corrode the dignity with which the jawaan laid down his life.

So, for once and for all, (especially for the Army soldiers posted on non IndoPak borders and BSF, CAPF jawaans alike) cut some slack for the executives by not giving into the unsolicited demands of the afflicted families.

Lastly, I would give a last try to make my point through an example. When you go to a temple and offer, say 101 INR to the religious deity; should the idol come to life and disown you? Because you just tried to evaluate majesty’s value as just Rs 101? Or while giving, say Rs 5100, to a newlywed couple; do you do so just because you estimate the couple to be worth 5100 rupees?

Exactly!

The amounts you offer as gifts or grants are never the value predictors of the recipient; they are just a token of love, honour and pride towards the same.

(And the widows/kids in dire need of a source of income have certain reservations in government jobs)

Jai Hind.

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TRYING TO MAKE SENSE FROM NONSENSE

​You plan to meet her for lunch at 2pm. She reaches at 2:06 pm and calls you. You tell her that you’ll be there in 5, while still struggling to find your way out of the bed. She waits and waits, listening to your “just 15 minutes, 10, 5 and so on..” Every time she calls.

Finally, you reach! At 3:07 pm, and:

Case 1: Your terrible lies (because she anyway would’ve learned that you have taken more than 5 minutes which you first assured her) and unpunctuality, infuriate her. She barges at you for the same when you finally arrive.
Case 2: She sits there quietly, sliding the matter from the table and greets you warmly. You apologize (that also depends on the kind of person you’re) and she retorts with a gentle smile, “it’s fine!”
You find her over reactive under case 1 and mock her with “when a girl says I’m fine, she’s not.. Girls are so stupid, they don’t mean what they say.. Hahaha” under case 2 (as if you literally meant when you said “just 5 minutes”).
Moral: Men have mastered the art of making a woman appear dumb no matter what she does.
No, I’m not a male basher.

No, my previous two statements don’t contradict.

(Kudos to the men who couldn’t relate to this shit) 

DEAR MORE THAN A FRIEND

Sliding through the crevasses in my heart, you let all the butterflies in my belly meander to the depths unfathomable… And tsh! You stealthily slip away as the grey fish in silvery waters under the scorching sun. The alarm of reality does so, to me, every time.
And I bite my teeth, fidget hands and tremble, “Will he be more than friends or none at all?”

Sketching across your bare chest’s canvas, the pain that is synonymous to the temple of all human emotions; I faintly withdraw my hands as the curtain of reality falls abruptly. And you, still jovial and still exuberant, remain illusionary in the multi dimensional world. Never diminishing yet never approaching. Like a mirage.

As I try to fix all the digits right while working out the math whether you love me a little more or you just be chivalric; I just can’t terminate my perplexity even after all these years.

Spelling it all out: Let’s just wince in pain and moan gracefully sans any need to conceal it, act strong or leave it indestructible? Cry me rivers and I’ll prick you thorns. Let’s just feel human?

NUMBERS

​Michael hussey started learning cricket at 23 and made his debut at the age of 30. Pravin Tambe starred in IPL at 42 while Brad Hodge continued till 42. Zaheer Khan had started at 17 in the domestic circuit. 


On the other hand, Misbah ul Haq hit his tenth test ton internationally at 42 at Lord’s.

Age is a number, they say. And we should stop minding numbers, they say. But so are the records which are made and the ones which are broken. The birthdays you celebrate, the bills I pay, the salary you receive, the pounds I shed off are all numbers. The most suicidal of them all, marks: yours and mine is a combination of digits as well. 
So compressively, how far will you go to keep them at bay? The answer to this can be numerical too.

Numbers were brought into civilisation so as to ration goods and compare the poverty levels. They are incessantly used significantly while issuing financial budgets and speed of the fastest automobile and such numbers don’t disturb.

However, if I pinpoint the losses you’ve incurred or the time you’ve wasted, you’re motivated enough to rebound; to smash my face in the spiritual channels of “numbers are mindless”. 

THE SECOND LIFE

​Devoid of patriarchy and matriarchy, masculism and feminism, lies a world which hasn’t been contracted into labyrinths of humongous feasts and fiery rituals. Anecdotal edifices and abominations of lives lost to sacred fires of matrimony. 

Overdress, paint the face, fake a smile and you’re done! Not to forget, those skimpy high heels that won’t spare you from the woes of wiggly toes on your wedding day and myriad days to follow.
With respect to a disturbed mind and the inability of not so grandly awakened and inherent wisdom of mine to deduce the pursuits of happiness, I hereby interrogate.

Till when will we pompously mark the valediction of bride turned effigies from their homes emphasizing on the universality of the ritual? Till when will we escalate them onto the podia mentioning about the sacrifices they make while quitting jobs and looking after homes instead of making the world a better place such that they don’t have to call it quits? Sacrifices they make when they can’t see their parents for days because they’ve to parent someone else? 

What’s worth the chaotic dancing and drooling delicacies in this? Worth the bank notes spent; as if they weren’t earned from the laboriousness of years but by emptying a stranger’s coffers overnight? 

THE LITTLE DIFFERENCE

​Her mother snatched away the dupatta she was veiling her face with. Her innocent voice protesting to play petty household games like other girls passed across the deaf ears.

Her father, compelled her to sweat harder and combat stronger when other girls began steering away from outdoor sports. Her plea to stay occupied in latest fashion gizmos as a delicate and motionless lump was dumped in the trash bins of uselessness.

With bruised knees and battered hopes, she sprinted, when getting up became insurmountable for the ordinary. Smothered the scorching sun with her frosty bite in the sport, wreaked havoc in the opponents’ tents, smiled and moved forth to demolish the next battalion. And voila! Toiling meticulously with stringent zeal and draining methods, she eventually smelled success. And that’s how she built a legacy!

Today, she towers over the shadows she once wanted to stay limited to. Couldn’t thank her parents enough for the gigantic difference.

​A GUIDE TO RELATIONSHIPS

He knows how to cuddle and seek personal pleasures in the name of consolation when you’re crying. He knows how to be doting and sweet in your eyes by asking you to let him carry your feather weight bag. With a timing extremely accurate and words purely apt, he can make you laugh like no one can because he’s experience of luring girls backing him. He’s well acquainted with the impact of “you look like a descendant from the heaven” and “most beautiful girl on the planet inside out” as he’s gotten away with them uncountable number of times. 

Well versed with the fact that like any other person even you’ll be the weakest, down to your last 2 percent after midnight; he makes that call and texts those mushy messages to you.. The ones that invade right from your bare and raw chest into your soul, slowly and too beautifully, giving you ample amount of time to talk to day and night. Promises to drop you after that party where you made out with no pre-plans and he just pretended to show similar tentativeness, payments of bills and purchases of those things you love which etched his irresponsibly uttered “forever together” in your heart were all well charted out. You smelled his wild and exorcist behavioral patterns as chivalry. Gradually, learnt about his wayward ways and fake concerns. Got cheated. Regretted. And cried. Sobbed enough? Time for making the right choice? Maybe, here’s how.

Look for the one who doesn’t instagram every nude picture in front of that gym mirror. Terribly shy and awkward to talk to you about something random, however, extremely confident while expressing himself otherwise or maybe not so even otherwise. The one who’s afraid of that vague contact of skins even in haphazardness. For he knows that he’ll be called a pervert and a rascal.

He’ll watch you in tears from a mile and offer you solace with his words and his silence rather than physical intimacy.

Yes, even he wants to have sex with you but too petrified to ask that question. Because what if you deny?! Too bad, only thought to have sex with one and didn’t keep alternatives while preparing himself for the worst. Hence, got too much worried with that ‘NO’ he might hear.

Because you see, he doesn’t live in a fairytale. He’s a realist and looks forward to helping you grow with the same attributes. Every time isn’t the time to sweet talk for him nor is every night as vacant as talking to sleep because he hustles and values grinding in life. Doesn’t flatter with euphemisms like “the prettiest girl inside out” because he acknowledges that the world has observed both: Mother Teresa and Kim Kardashian. Didn’t “aww” at your sob story because he believed you should’ve been stronger while facing that situation and believes so even now. Never faking a forever that he might fail to fulfil, he doesn’t say it every time rather makes you feel the worth of his affection and his loyalty to decide for yourself. Feeling no obligation to pay the whole bill or gift you those expensive orchids on Valentine’s, he openly talks about his pocket money constraints and the self respect that’s attached with earning your own money and spending it like a boss. The lover who’s more of a friend and a friend who’s fortunately a lover too.

 

I hope this helps you in wiping the clouds and making rightful choices under a clear sky next time.

MISSING THE PLACE AND THOSE DAYS

​There have been poems, there have been chapters and there have been long long stories elucidating the essence of taking a leap of faith and plunging into the unknown. I call myself an avid reader but nothing taught me the aforementioned like my years in college.
I’ve exams rolling over in a week’s time but I guess, nothing can refrain me from mulling about my sojourn today! 😁

My schooling years were a lot about how a Tuesday submission should mean a Monday but never a Wednesday, how reporting at the reception at 8:00 am means a 7:55 am and never an 8:02 am, how you’re bound to wish your teachers (irrespective of whether they teach you or not) whenever you meet them in the school premises or even outside, and how you can never start your day sans prayers/meditation. 

Life in college has been different, if not better or worse. An 8:00 am got interpreted as an 8:30 lecture and a Tuesday assignment submission meant Wednesday, at earliest; next week’s Wednesday. It’s okay if you don’t recognize your professor in the campus, more often than not, he/she neither. 
Revisiting the downstream lanes compel me to believe that group studies, if at all, are efficacious with a limit tending to zero. One person completing her assignment in the first place is the reason why others are able to do theirs. You can either have your breakfast or your morning lecture, sparsely both. Photocopy and coffee machines are the true saviours. Life these days is difficult without WiFi and smart phones; and so is, learning about cancellation/rescheduling of classes, deadline of every project, syllabus of every internal and most importantly, circulation of one individual’s answer sheet to the entire class at a lightning speed. 
(Almost) every party/sleepover/trip jolts out someone’s true (and unpleasant) character. People who think in their heads that they’re the wittiest and most intelligent have infinitesimal stupidity in their bloods and bones. It’s easy to get lost in the crowd. And, there’s no one as ravishing in his/her untangled mess (and paradoxes) as Maggi noodles. :’)
To my failure, I can’t overemphasize this enough but: Following your passion is all the drug your soul wants in life.

DEAR DAUGHTER

​When you were born, just like any other mother in the world, when I held you- a tiny swathed lump, in my hands and fed you for the first time, I’d promised to myself that I would defend you from all the woes and mishaps till the very end of my life and beyond. Laying wishes upon the shooting stars and never letting a leaf turn brown in my sapling, I smelled triumph when you were five.
But God’s been wise. He taught me about beginner’s luck and victor’s terrible struggle in this motherhood journey through personal experience.
Barely did I cognize on the maternity bed that laboring for your end goals and ambitions in life by yourself is so obvious and so definite that no one can substitute it. I’m sorry darling but failing to my promise- I could only motivate you, counsel you, support you -and that too only some times but not battle out life on your behalf. 
I surely, won’t claim that I successfully protected you from the evils of the world, as I’d wished or never wept because of the troubles you gave me, which I’d never expected. Sometimes I failed miserably in being the ideal mother- not caressing you when you’d no clue of how to convert your tremendous speed into velocity by saying “It’s okay darling” when you were 15 and not letting you go out because of my fears and my insecurities. And, other times you failed me. Because I wasn’t like Sally’s mother.
You know, when I stroke puberty, my mother gave me a cloth napkin as an undercover for my bleeding uterus in secrecy- never letting me touch the pickle that would go stale nor letting me enter temples that would become impure during “those” days. She consoled me that I’ll be fine but I didn’t know I was hurt or sick or not fine. When you went through the same stage, I sat next to you and explained the intricacies of what’s going on behind the curtains. Hunting down for words which didn’t sound pervert, I meandered through curvy lanes thereby, leaving you in sparse darkness. Today, I wonder how you’ll surpass this phase as a mother. Drawing those diagrams, explaining her social norms and steps to break them; I wish you do it all which I always wanted to but never could.
Today, as I look at you nourishing the sapling in your womb, I’m bound to reminisce about the good old days. Your tiny fingers, your generous smiles and troublesome cries! But what is to remember beyond this phase is glorious!   Dear daughter, thank you for being so strong that instead of making me crib about failing to lay a bed of roses for you, you – a warrior princess and a pilot girl, taught me to rejoice in it. 
When I was fifteen, my mother taught me the nuances of sewing, stitching, cooking and basic art and craft. She always mentioned the profoundness that came with it; thereby making you self dependent and economical. You see, your nani always wanted me to earn my own bread. But I was a vibrant and an enthusiastic soul- raring to be a pilot, a warrior, a policymaker and an entrepreneur. She protested, explaining to me how these professions are all noble but not manageable, because at least for once my uterus would deliver a baby who would need nourishment for another 20 years.
You may call it the generation gap or progressive thinking but with all due respect to her divine soul, I didn’t and won’t forward my mother’s legacy onto you unedited.
My love, being a mother is its own kind of beautiful but that’s not your only job, because in you – I smell guns blazing to reach Mt Everest. Irrespective of the galaxy or constellation you choose to shine in, you’ll always be my star. Agreed, sometimes you’ll barely sleep as a mother and will still have to report on desk the next day on time. During those years just recall how you partied late all night and still gave exams and went to job on time the following day without cribbing about the intricacies of being a woman, craving for sympathies and a special status in the society. Don’t let anyone befool you that age has its own limitations and life at 20 can’t be rewound at 40. 
Because in this misled era, the best way to be a feminist is by being just a civilian. Don’t overdo it by being a male or a female. It gets complicated.

​THE ORPHAN

There’s an adult in the orphanage with two sets of potential parents. Both are willing to go to any extent for procuring the young adult who has suffered all her life but is still resplendently beautiful.
The administrators of the orphanage give the orphan the choice to self select one couple as parents from now on.

Both couples lure the child by promising her nutrition, protection and opportunities to grow and learn in their respective homes.
But the child is adamantly reluctant as she chooses freedom over subjugation of either couple.
So both parents bribe the administrator, seek underworld’s help and use force to assert ownership on the dazzling beauty against her will.
Yes, living under the fortification all through her life, she now craves for the atmosphere where she can make her own mistakes and convert some of them into triumphs.
Unfair as life is, she fights battles against the systems in place, bleeding every now and then. All because the two claimants don’t even care about what she wants rather choose to settle the matter over never-ending fights amongst themselves.
Trenched warfares follow guerilla wars and arrays of bullets.  Add to this, danger at the terrestrial borders, discomfort at the naval bases and threats looming in the aerial drones. 
The young girl is terrified, always floating in terror of further turbulence with her nose just above water.
She’s wounded by pellet guns and raped  by the so-called protectors from either side perennially but still searching.
Searching for the deafening alarm bell that rings in the ears of both India and Pakistan. And shouts out loud and clear, to put an end to their intents to subjugate a territory by forcefully acting as parental bodies. 
May Kashmir (the orphan) hail one day!