Howrah station. Arambagh Local at 12:15 p.m. Ramesh is sitting in the seat next to the window of a room at the end. There are five or six people in the room. He saw one of them sitting by the window opposite to him, reading a paper. With a suitcase. And the two boys are sitting in a seat a little farther away from her and sometimes looking at her. This time the train is empty. But today it seems a little too empty. The train has started rolling. A man came running and jumped into the room. The man is gasping. He approached Ramesh and asked, “Is this Arambagh Local?”Ramesh shook his head without saying anything. The man sat face to face in the front seat of Ramesh. The age will be forty-five or fifty. With a sigh of relief, he said, “Oh ! if I was late for a couple of minutes, I would have to sit for another hour and a half. So much traffic jam in Kolkata! The heat has fallen on him again today. You can’t see the clouds in the sky. All in all. “
The man was saying the words to Ramesh. But Ramesh did not listen to all this. What is he thinking absentmindedly. The two boys are talking to each other.
“How far will it go, brother?” The man asked.
Ramesh stared at the man for so long. “Yes, what are you saying?”
“Guys, where do you get off?”
“I’ll get off … I mean … yeah … it’s Arambagh,” Ramesh mumbled.
“O Arambagh! That means from start to finish! ”Said the man with a smile. When Ramesh nodded, the man said again, “I will go down to Haripal.” On the other hand, I went to Tarakeswar. Went to the temple. Are you alone Or is there someone with you? “
“No, no, I’m alone,” Ramesh thought for a few seconds to answer.
“All right. You don’t think I’m talking to you, brother, do you? “
What will Ramesh answer? What is he thinking? Just looking back and forth. Meanwhile, the man with the suitcase is sitting with his head bowed in the newspaper. There is no time to look anywhere.
“No, no. What’s there to mind! ”Ramesh said with a fake smile on his face.
“Hey-hey-hey … that’s pretty, that’s pretty.” The man laughed.
“Brother, where is the house?” In the armchair? “
“No, Chandannagar,” Ramesh replied briefly.
“Home in Chandannagar, but on this train!”
“I’m going to a friend’s house.”
“It’s OK. So, what is your profession? “
“I’m … I mean yeah … export-import business,” Ramesh muttered.
“Huh, good.” The man shook his head. Then he said, “By the way, do you know what happened yesterday?”
“What happened?” Ramesh seemed to fall from the sky.
“Hey, a gentleman at this Howrah station was attacked by some miscreants, stabbed him and ran away with all his money. Hey, he gave it in today’s paper! The injured man has been admitted to Howrah District Hospital. Haven’t you heard? “
Ramesh did not think what to answer. A thought has been swirling in his head ever since. Meanwhile, the train is running. Who knows which station Perlo! I think it will be Belur.
“Yeah, I mean, fly that fly a little bit …”
“Then you can imagine the era we’ve come to?” People will not be able to get out on the streets safely? Fear of having to set foot outside the house? Even if he is not afraid of tigers and lions, people! Shh, shh! “
The man said the last thing in a very excited way by slapping his knee.
Ramesh could not speak for so long. On the contrary, he has been annoyed in his mind for so long. Once I thought I would tell the man over his face –
“Hey, Mister, shut up, you’ve been reading Chandi to your ears ever since.” And then he would leave the room and go to another room. But no, this room will not leave him. Can’t go without. Apart from that, now he is getting some interest in the words of the man.
“Aren’t you scared?” Ramesh asked.
“Fear?” Nah! I got it earlier. But I don’t get it anymore. ”The man replied.
“Why?” Ramesh asked.
“Why!” Said the man, a little bored, “… he who has something to lose is afraid. I have nothing to lose. What was lost was lost twenty years ago. And that was the last time I got that fear. “
Ramesh’s curiosity suddenly increased. He smells a mystery in the man’s words.
“I do not understand. What was that 20 years ago … ”Ramesh said hesitantly.
“Hey-hey-hey,” the man smiled with that sad expression on his face. He said, “You see, you have become very curious, brother! Of course, it should be curious. Who doesn’t like to hear stories? If that story is true again …! ”The man paused for a moment, then said boldly,“ Every time I remember the incident, the inside of my chest burns. I’m alone now to tell people at home. My parents passed away when I was in college. Then he was cutting alone. Then when I get a job, I get married and settle down. Love marriage. Love from college life. Name Angana. That yard was my only recourse in my lonely life. How many dreams did we have before marriage … How much planning, how much will we do after marriage, how will we go to Hatha, how will our house be like? Eventually, the marriage took place. But the dream of building a happy dove-house remained elusive. “
The man paused, then began to speak again. “It simply came to our notice then. Only the place was different and the level of damage was much higher. We’ve only been married for six months now. Anna’s father’s house is in Bandel. Lakshmi puja is performed there every year. The two of us were returning from there that day. The train was fairly empty. The two of us were sitting side by side in a seat like this by the window … Suddenly, four people from among the passengers in the space between Bhadreshwar and Vaidyabati … each with a pistol in his hand, all at gunpoint and started robbing. Money, jewelry … everything he had was taken away. There was some jewelry on the courtyard. Had to pay. This time a passenger in front of us suddenly went to pull the chain. As a result, he started a scuffle with one of them. But everyone is afraid of life. So everyone was just watching the joke. At that moment, a shot was fired from the pistol at the left side of Angana’s chest. It was very close. Survived two hours after being taken to hospital. “
After saying so much, the man stopped. Then he sighed and said, “I’ve been alone ever since. It’s been so many years.
Ramesh was listening to the man’s words with one mind. Said, “Living alone like this, isn’t it a problem?”
“It happened. It took almost a year to recover from the incident. Going to the office, eating, sleeping all became irregular. I used to try to see Rose Angana in my dreams. The body-mind was all broken. At this time I remembered a poem by Ravi Tagore very much -I started reading more and more Ravi Tagore’s poems. I tried to realize his lifelong thoughts. I realized that everything is not over now. Life begins anew, in a new way. I started. I crowded into an NGO. I’m still there. This allows you to keep yourself busy in your leisure time in the office. And besides, I find Angana in such work. He was also addicted to this kind of work. I spend two or three days a week in an orphanage. There is hustle and bustle with the children, singing … Besides, if there is some one’s birthday, his celebration … It is not clear where the time is spent. Now, this is my daily work routine. Office, NGO, Orphanage, and Ravi Kavya at night. “
The man was silent. The paper-reading man on the other side is talking on the phone. Maybe with grandchildren.
“Yes, Grandpa, tell me.” Yes, I remember the toy. But first tell me you will not do mischief! Listen to what mom says … Yes, that’s right… I remember exactly. How are you doing now? … Tata. ”The man laughed and hung up.
Ramesh had been listening to the man for so long. The two boys on the other side are looking at him again. Ramesh seems to be a little distracted and thinking again. After a while, he turned to the man and said, “Why didn’t you remarry?”
‘‘ Hey-hey-hey. What can be done if I say yes? ”The man sighed.
“If you want to put someone in someone else’s place now, you have to remove the person from the past.” Honestly, I still haven’t been able to clear that space! “
“Does that mean you still love your wife?”
The man smiled softly. Said,
“That love is the source. for that’s loudly fought the battle of life for so long. And without that, this love is the religion of life. Love can solve all the problems of society and life. Although I am talking about love, I am talking about all kinds of love. Love for relatives, neighbors, friends, and even animals. In other words, love in life. This is the essence of all religions. Nothing is above man and humanity. But those who are committing robberies and murders on such roads or those who are killing innocent people for no reason with bombs and guns do not understand this simple thing. If all the people in the world loved each other today, there would be no more riots, riots, and murders. The world would be different. “
What is Ramesh thinking? The man’s words are making a wave in him. Love, love, what are these things? Do you eat butter? Can any man really love another man so much? Love your relatives, neighbors, friends … Love in life – what is this? He does not understand any of this! That is what he has learned so far … or he has been taught that in order to survive on earth, one has to stumble and move forward. No one leaves the road here. So be selfish. You have to snatch your debt. Otherwise, you will have to die by being crushed under the feet of others. Where, no one taught him about love! He has never loved anyone! Rather he …!
“Well, brother, there are a lot of stories … I have to get up this time. Malia has arrived. Then Haripal, ”said the man with a smile. “It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. After a long time, I talked so much about the past with someone. The mind feels quite light. Well, come on then. Be careful. ”The man got up and went to the gate.
Ramesh sat alone in silence. Look around once. The man with the suitcase on the other side is now sitting with his paper facing the window. The two boys are still sitting there. Ramesh’s eyes are repeatedly rubbing with theirs. An intriguing mystery vision … as if to say something. Ramesh seems to have a conflict in his mind. A bunch of questions are slowly surrounding him. Can’t find the answer. Eating habudubu. Trying hard to stay afloat. Like the last fight before dying. Darkness all around. He closed his eyes. He let out a sigh and leaned his body back.
It’s half-past eleven. The lights are on on the second floor of the last house in the lonely, dark Ramanath Mukherjee Lane. Jagannath alias Jaga is sitting in a chair, lifting his legs on the front table, facing the ceiling, smoking a cigarette, and looking at the clock curiously. Four boys are playing carom at a little distance. The dim light and cigarette smoke seemed to make the whole room mysterious. Two boys entered the room. Jagannath was waiting for them. Seeing that, he sat up straight and said, “Hey Montu, you have come … is it done?” The two boys frowned.
“Jagada … I mean … yeah … the thing is …,” the two of them bowed their heads and stood.
There was nothing left to understand about Jagannath.
“It doesn’t mean that!” Jagannath said angrily slapping the table. “A little work is not done by you! Damn so many plans, so many tables … all in a hurry? Do you know how much money was spent on you today? Do you know how much was in the man’s suitcase? You had a pistol, but Eli returned empty-handed? I am dealing with all the useless things. “
The two of them had been listening for so long. Some people who were playing carom are also looking away from the game.
“We were ready, Jagoda. If Ramesh had not been disturbed in the end, everything would have been fine, ”said Montu.
“Ramesh?” Why? What did he do again? “
“The two of us were sitting in a seat …” Montu continued, “… Ramesh was sitting in a seat by the window a short distance from us. And the man was sitting by the window opposite Ramesh. When the train started moving, we signaled to Ramesh. But he never paid attention. Ulto shared the story with a man sitting in front of him. Seeing that he was not getting up, we did not have the courage to do anything. I sat quietly. The man went down to Tarakeswar. The bird slipped in front of his eyes. When I got off the train and asked him, he said he would never do such dirty work again. “
“You mean, like, saltines and their ilk, eh?” What are you talking about! Why not? Where is he? ”Jagannath asked in surprise.
“Because he said nothing,” Montu replied. “Sitting outside.”
At Jagannath’s words, Montu called Ramesh and took him away. As soon as Ramesh entered, Jagannath asked, “What are you listening to in your name … are you …”
“You heard exactly what you heard,” Ramesh said before Jagannath could finish.
“Is that so?” Why, Ray, did you suddenly find any hidden treasure? ”Jagannath said with a sneer and a contemptuous smile.
Ramesh is silent. After a while, he said like a thinker, “Hidden treasure? Yeah Al that sounds pretty crap to me, Looks like BT ain’t for me either.
Jagannath laughed again at Ramesh’s words. “So?” Will you enjoy it all alone? Give us something too! ” He said with a sarcastic smile. Seeing Jagannath, others are also smiling.
“This wealth cannot be shared, Jagada. And can not be enjoyed. Can’t touch … can’t see. Can only be realized in life. It can be felt. “
“Oh my gosh! What theories are you listening to, Mairi! Did you take initiation from someone? Or did you drink alcohol? ”Jagannath said with a smile. “Let’s be gay, whatever has happened, let’s go home now. I’ll tell you tomorrow what to do next. “
“I’m not coming from tomorrow, Jagada.”
“Oh, that means you got it right, didn’t you?” When I’m not doing that anymore, why is Eli here? “
“I came to let you know.”
“alright. That you want to give up all this … Do you think that if you want to give up, I will give up on you? ” Tell me? ”
“I know, I know, I know everything.” Ramesh said calmly without being so scared, “But you can’t stop me by showing these fears. I don’t care about anything else. “
“Is that so?” Well, let it be so. But listen for the last time, I didn’t do well at all. “
“Good or bad, time will tell.”
“Okay, I’ll see how far the race goes.”
“Running in life is all about work,” Ramesh said with a crooked smile, “Some run towards the light and some towards the darkness.” Should I be gay? ”
“Everything is fine,” said Jagannath in a serious tone, “so there is no need to show respect by asking.” Just remember my words. “
Ramesh just came out of the house with a contemptuous crooked smile. It’s dark outside. A street lamp is burning some distance away. The light of the street lamp is like a lonely island in the middle of this darkness. Ramesh grabbed a cigarette. As the smoke cleared, I began to think. Jagannath’s words are still ringing in his ears. Will he forget all this so easily? Is he a potter? Ramesh took a deep breath. Let’s be gay! Whatever happens, he will see. Now he doesn’t care about anyone. The new island of light he has found, the island he will make his new world. He threw down the cigarette and started walking.