Today I wanted to write about something, but did not have enough examples to substantiate my opinion so I decided to drop the topic. The itch to write was still there, so I started thinking about things that I could write about. Environment was a pretty good contender but I had missed the opportunity by almost a week, the Environment Day was on 5th of june and half of the world was busy writing something or the other about environmental protection that day. Moreover I felt ashamed of the fact that I had not planted even a single tree myself,whats the point in motivating others. I dropped the idea. It was Birsa Munda’s 115th death anniversary a few days ago,so I started writing about him. To my dismay I could not write more than a hundred words about him. Most the information that I could share was already in the news or wikipedia. As I could not pay him proper respects I decided to abandon this topic too. It would have been pointless to hover about the theme saying he was a ‘Santhal Rebel’ and a ‘martyr’. Everyone knows about it. Almost everyone. I am pretty sure. The way an idea gives birth another is really interesting. While I was pondering about Birsa Munda, his statue flashed in my memory, I had seen that statue several times on my way to school. It was a established to commemorate his sarifice for the nation. Suddenly I realised I could write about the great things that are available in my home town, Giridih. I started recollecting the names of all great men who were associated with Giridih. It was an enriching experience. It was like looking out for my own roots, almost Like BOURNE ULTIMATUM. The Harappans used to buy zinc from this region to convert copper into brass. 20 out of 24 Jain Tirthankaras have attained Moksha in Parasnath hills of Giridih. Later day great personalities have also lived here. Rabindranath tagore wrote his “Shivaji Utsav” while residing in Giridih, his house “Dawasika Bhawan” is still there. Sir J.C.Bose spent his last days in giridih while on the contrary Satyajit Ray spent his childhood in Giridih. His hangover of this small town was so strong that one of his characters in his science fiction novels was made a resident of this town. His name was professor “Shonku” I hope I am not mistaken. I decided to leave this topic because of reasons that I have not discussed yet. The kind of image the reader would have conceptualized would have been far from true in the absence of proper photographs. The house of Rabindranath Tagore is ruined, school named after J.C.Bose is in tatters, there is not trace of Satyajit Ray in any form whether in culture or in writings,one of the oldest municipalities of India now has tons of muck infront of it. The apathy clearly visible. The sacred Parasnath Hills are infested with ‘Maoists’. Non-Violence is least expected there. It was not proper to make a flowery image of a far away land. Nor was it correct to say ill about something without any proof. the bottomline, I left this topic. Finally in lack of any option I decided to try my hands at creative writing. I thought of writing an essay with every sentence having only five words. Every sentence with five words. It was really very difficult. But I tried real hard. I was a bit successful. But repetition made it boring. The readers would have quit. Much before finishing the paragraph. I wanted them to read it. To make it interesting I couldn’t find any better way than to use longer sentences,with a few commas; a semi colon and finally a full stop. This was not strong enough to hold the readers so I decided to use words like bumfoozle,bamboozle and bimbo, they all have different tones and they strike a chord with the funny bones. I felt quite successful in my endeavour but on reading other’s blogs, I decided not to write again. The world is full of creative,intelligent and funny people,painfully some are a combination of all these in one. I am not good enough to write and so I won’t write. It was a difficult decision but before I could notice I had finished writing almost 700 words.
I am from Giridih which is a small town in Jharkhand. It was once known for its coal mines,that now lie abandoned. The practically possible amount that could be pulled out of the earth has already been extracted. What lies inside,are pillars of coal which are necessary for providing support to the land above. Some poor localites in the absence of any other opportunity, enter these mines risking their lives to scrap off coal from the walls and pillars, for a livelihood. Many a times they are lucky, at times they are not! The land collapses if the pillars become too thin, saving the poor from the burial expenses.
The life of such miners is full of hardships and everyone around the town knows about it. The coal that they collect from the mines is packed in sacks,loaded on a cycle and pushed for several kilometers before it reaches the city. Here they get a relatively higher price, at least a difference of a hundred rupees per quintal. Generally, thats the weight they carry on their cycles. Its common to see people helping these “koyla wallahs”,if they are pushing it uphill. I also used to do that. Its a bloody good exercise, 5 minutes are enough to exhaust you out!
Once while I was coming back from school, I saw an old “koyla wala” struggling with his load. I went closer and started pushing his cycle, he turned around and asked me not to do so. I insisted,for I really wanted to help him. He was old and frail. Stiil he refused to take my help. When I continued with my effort, he appealed to me disgustingly, ” please don’t touch this thing, its a CURSE!”
I didn’t know how to react,then,and I don’t know how to react now. Was it a kind of slavery, Where the master is unknown? However hard you try you can’t set yourself free. Why would anyone call something that provided him with livelihood throughout the life, a curse? I hope you people know why!!