It was sunday. The sun was high up in the sky, probably the village of MACHIPARA did not sleep well yesterday as diwali passed away. Sandya was the one who was up early. Her brother RAMU was still burning from the diabolical touch of fever. MENKA their mother had not yet returned from her "DHANDA".She was very late today probably her cutomers; truck drivers, had taken her too far. She will come, she knew. It was already 5'0'clock when SANDYA started the household chores. There was a knock a the wooden door of their thatched hut, it was her drunken father RAMESH. He drinks all night and comes home in the morning to go out again by the night. He beats both SANDHYA & RAMU, and spends most of her mother's money on toddy and gambling. He brings customers too, but when they are not to be found he drinks.

He asksd in a drunken voice "KUTIYA KAHA MARR GAYI, JO AAJ TU DARWAJAYE PAAR KHARI HAI?"{where did the bitch die  that you are standing at the door}

Sandya shivered and said "WOH ABHI TAK NAHI AAEE HAI".{she had not come till now}

He looked at his sick son & trembling daughter and spat on the floor of clay. He growled & said "AAJAYE TO KAH DAENA INSPECTOR SAAB BULA RAHAYE HAI" [if she comes tell that inspector was inquiring about her}. He went in.

Time passed and sandya had almost ended all her house hold chores and was about to go to the river near her hut, when he saw her mother coming.

She asked SANDYA "DADI KAHAA HAI?" {where is your grandmother?} 

"NAHI JANTI, ABHI BABOOJI AAYE HAI , WOH ANDAR HAI"{i don,t know. father has come. he is in}

"RAMU KAISA HAI?" {is ram well?}

"BUKHAR MEIN TAAP RAHA HAI?"{burning in fever}

"DAWAI KYU NAHI LAYEE SALI, WOH MAAR JAYEGA!!!!!!!"{why did'nt you buy the medicines.he will die} she was about to cry.

"PAISAYE BABOOJI DAROO MEIN BAHAA AAYE!!" [father had spend the money on toody.}

MENKA went inside the house covered in rage & helplessness, no mercy this time she will end it all today.

"PAISAYE KAHHA HAI?"{where is the money} she shouted at her husband who was so drunk that he could barely open his eyes let alone speak.

"UHHH....UH",came abrupt reply.

MENKA claspsed his collar and shook hard, "MAIN POOCHTI HOON PAISAYE KAHHA HAI?" {i'm asking where is the money]


"SAALA SARE UDAA KAAR AAYA HAI"{rascal has spend all the money }

Sandya ran in when she heard the uproar.Menka ordered sandya to immediately take the little boy dying of fever to hakim chacha. As she was about to leave the room she saw RAAM SHANKAR, the constable, waving his baton and coming towards their cottage.MENKA also saw him coming and stood infront of the door.Menka prostrated before him. RAAM SHANKAR was a good man. He had many a times helped them in financial crisis, at times when police was violent, and even helped Sandya and Ramu to get admission in the local village school. RAAM said in sorrow drenched voice"TERE MAA NAHI RAHI MENKA.KAAL RAAT KO EK DUMPER NAE KUCHAL DIYA. INSPECTOR SAAB BULATAE HAI".{ur mother had died . a lorry hit her hard. inspector is calling u}

MENKA did cry, not a drop of it, though her heart was ripped apart. " THIKK HAI RAAM BHAIYA MAIN AA JAUOOGI"{okay i will come}

'TERE KO DUKH NAHI HUAA?"{did you not feel the pain of loss}

A smile came as an answer. She went in. Opening the old canister behind the cupboard of the wooden almirah, gave it to sandhya and said "RAMU KO LAEKAR WAAPAS MAT AANA, KYUKI AAB YAHAN KOI NEHI HAI TUMHARA, SAMAJ LENA MAA MARR GAYEE, KAHI BHI CHALI JAA PAAR YAHAN MAT AANA "{take ramu and go somewhere else, because u have no relative here, assume your mother is dead, go anywhere but not here come back}

MENKA went to the station leaving the constible flabbergasted, & sandya with a canister full of 100 rupees. The inspector did every necessary both legal & ritual with her mother's dead body on the condition of enjoying her white flesh for five nights. The sky was almost dark when SANDYA reached the BUS STOP








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