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Abraded Emotionality

By Asija, Manohar

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Book Id: WPLBN0002827647
Format Type: PDF (eBook)
File Size: 1.62 mb
Reproduction Date: 3/22/2013

Title: Abraded Emotionality  
Author: Asija, Manohar
Volume:
Language: English
Subject: Fiction, Romance, Relationships
Collection: Authors Community
Subcollection: Romance
Historic
Publication Date:
Publisher: Self Published
Member Page: Manohar Asija

Description
This moderately sized novel opens before the reader, with an episode that took place during the very first halt, by a group of very intimate three unwed oldies, all retired college teachers of Delhi University. They were on a pleasure trip from Delhi to Kosani, a tourist resort situated in the Kumayun Hills a range of the Himalayas in the North of India. After having driven over a hundred kilometers relating to this journey, they had halted for refreshment at a place, where one of them is accosted by the owner of the roadside `Dhaba` (an indigenous restaurant). It triggers the person accosted to recall his boyhood days. Again, at their destination, the other one is accosted by an ex-girlfriend of his, in the distant past. The `trio` who are given to such type of tours, happen to meet two other ladies almost at the same time, while staying in a very beautiful zone of Goa. Here, each of these women have had been connected with either of the two other Professors, who hasn’t yet met any such female pupil of his, during the various other tours, undertaken by them the `trio` till then. These chance meetings brings forth during the next few years, a bond of a purpose for a meaningful solidarity, eventually turning into three live-in-couples.

Excerpt
Three chronic bachelors, on their way to Kosani (Kumayun Hills), have just completed their breakfast at a roadside modern `Dhaba` and the cashier for this solid group of three looks towards his companions, as if to seek their consent to signal the `boy` to bring the bill. So, in a broader sense, we used to be treating each other as `neighbour`, during those days. He is younger to me by a couple of years, but his physique and mannerism suggested his equaling me in age. Of course, he always remained conscious of my superiority, because at that point of time, I already had schooling for seven years, whereas he was thoroughly illiterate. …………………. Kundan happened to be the only `writer` available, had a brisk business almost for a fortnight. "I think that it was here that I actually began to earn for months at a run. One day, my earnings went to as high as Five Rupees and 14 Annas, I decided to place it before my mother, instead of handing it over to my father, as usual. …………. "Well, Khanna Ji, how long you had to work with this medico, before resuming your interrupted schooling?" This question was asked by Mr Nepali. "Of course, I spent around 16 months working with Dr Chhabra, as apprentice Dresser cum Dispenser. But I lost only one year of my life, with regard to my passing out from the school after going through the High School Examination, conducted by the Board of Secondary Education, as the rest of the time was condoned by the school authorities, keeping in view our refugee status."Of course, those two incidents that took place during my apprenticeship there played a great role in the formation of that naive boy into a psychologist at a future date. These mutually unrelated occurrences happened months apart, after I had gained some experience of the job during my six months of working under the guidance of my senior, who looked thrice my age. ………… In a couple of minutes, the Sun has assumed its shape and luster, which all of them are used to feel, while looking towards East, in the clear morning hours. As Nepali turns his face to look back at the crowd of tourists, staying in this very hotel, named `Surya Namaskar`, his eyes meet the shining eyes of a lady in tight trousers and top. Before the Professor could place appropriately this familiar face, the lady extends her hand towards him with a simultaneous yell, "Good morning, Sir."It fetches a warm response from him, as he ejaculates, "Oh, Vidya! What a pleasant surprise after ages?" ……….. He had observed Sheelu trying to conceal the money from others, as she was shoving that currency note just picked from the ground, into her undergarment below her shirt. When her brother asked for the reason for concealing the currency note, she denied the very existence of any such note there. ……. Almost at the same time, Pipasha Gulhati, sitting in an arm-chair, at her home, is busy analyzing facts, voluntarily divulged by Shaloo, about her own past, without any rhyme or reason. ……… Mr M.S. Kshetrpal and his wife, Archana, bring their Indo-American daughter-in-law, Daisy, from Canada, alongwith themselves to their native land, when they proceed on a vacation, with a view to afford this young lady to have a close feel of the Indian culture and traditions, in their original form. ………… Five days on, the television channels are still showing the same 'footage, with a little amount of new information that could be hardly treated as `news`. It seems that police are baffled about the motive of the murder. It is reported that some experts suspect a suicide, perhaps abetted by the sister-in-law of the victim, in a planned manner. ………. Three months on, the police, as well as the public have almost relegated the memory of Daisy murder case. But the Kshetrapals, the really affected ones, cannot afford this luxury. …….. Mr Kundan Khanna's cellphone rings to attract his attention. He checks the ID of the caller. He is sure that this number is not registered in the `contact folder of his mobile. So, he speaks in a somber tone, "Hello!" In return, he hears someone asking, "May I speak to Professor Kundan Ji?" "May I know who is there on the other end?" The professor asks in an authoritarian tone. The caller speaks, "I am Baboo Yadav of Gajraula." ……….. Inside the room, Vidya stood before him, almost half-a-ft away, staring into his face, with a cunning smile on her lips. She spoke, in a stern voice, "Babboo Ji, now, you are our prisoner for four hours. Here, you have no choice, but to please us by way of yielding to our demands. In case, you refuse to serve me as well as my friends, you will definitely lose your job. ……… Almost a period of three months has gone, when Mr Nepali feels like searching his own mind, as to how Vidya had reacted during the their luncheon get-together at her residence, to mark the `Year-end Party` last year, when Bhutalia teased him by asking his friend, "Nepali Saheb, do you ever repent for your refusal to let Vidya ji join in life, during your prime youth?" …… After having got aborted the fetus, illicitly conceived by her from Dharam Bir, Hansa took stock of her future life. The exercise brought forth a dismal picture that projected loneliness, financial dependence forever, no leisure, servitude and an infinite spell of boredom for her. At one such occasion, while initiating the conversation about personal views on the mode of finding a lifemate, Pepsy said, "Well, I believe that almost everyone desires to have an intimate experience of love, marriage, sex and reproduction or procreation. Yaar Hansa, are you in favour of maintaining strictly the order of these events to occur in one's life?" "Of course, to my mind, it appears that there is no doubt to prefer love before marriage, but the last two events cannot change places, as procreation itself is dependent upon sex. ……… Shaloo is busy mulling the suggestion, expressed repeatedly, by her husband, regarding his keen desire to plan one more child, in the near future. But, she is unable to overcome her apprehension of conceiving a thalasemic major, this time. Vikas insists on taking a chance, as he feels no problem, with the idea of getting the fetus aborted, if on examination, it is found that the child to be born would be a thalasemic major. ……. "Well, Prem Bhai, your curiosity about my already having acquaintance with the manager of this hotel, will soon be satiated. I am sure; you already know the delicacy of my professional requirements. Now, that this matter is over a decade old, and also has since been disposed off, by not only the trial court, but also by the first court of appeal, I feel no problem in referring to that incident, when I had my official residence for over a week, in the hotel, where this gentleman was working as manager. ……….. Having felt very intelligently, her husband's feelings, Mandakini comes out with a rather authoritative statement, as she says, "I don't mind declaring that law is blind, but I am sure that our courts are fully awake to separate truth from the bundle of lies. Someone might say that `justice delayed, is justice denied`. But, I always believe, `justice hurried, is justice burried`. ……. No doubt, her proposal finds favour with all her companions. She looks around to see if some waiter is available in the vicinity. These efforts of hers have a glimpse of one known person sitting at a table, just a couple of meters away. A spontaneous move takes her to that point, where that oldie is present in the company of two others of his age. With her both hands clasped and a genuine beam of smile on her face, Mandakini speaks, "Namaskar, Professor Khanna." Marking the presence of one of his ex-students, Mr Kundan rises up from his chair to reciprocate the cordiality. He speaks, "What a pleasant surprise to see you here! I am sure; a period of over four decades must have elapsed since you passed out of our college. …….. "Balram Ji, I am Kalpana, daughter of Madhusudan Dheeman, your neighbour, in Khyber Pass area, almost 45 years ago," the lady spoke in a gentle tone. Having been taken by surprise, Balram almost touches her folded hands, while reciprocating her gesture of cordiality, with the like response. Then, he offers her the seat, just vacated by Mandakini, next to his own. While she takes her seat, Sushmita tells Mr Singhal, "Uncle, now, you enjoy the company of my `Nani Ji` (maternal grandma), I beg leave of you to attend to some other uncle or auntie," as she leaves them with a short giggle. Having exchanged the essential courtesies, both remain silent for a few minutes, perhaps, to take care, that nothing is spoken, that might take the lid off their past life, whether singly or jointly. …………… "What nomenclature should be given to my relationship with that sweet girl of sixteen, while I was just 19 or at the most in the proximity of 20? Was it an extra-marital relationship? No, Not at all. Neither of us was a married person at that point of time. Was it a rape committed by me on an innocent woman? Definitely it wasn’t. It all happened with the consent of the both. And above all, there was no whimper or whine. ……….. Something was very much disturbing me and Pravez, too, as we could gauge, by way of furtive glances into each other's face. We were under the unbearable pressure of forced silence, particularly when our contact with the lone female companion, we had during this train journey, I mean my mother, had been snapped. ………. At the moment, when Balram is back home after having a chance meeting with Kalpana and has mentally recalled all that had he had `done` in complicity with her, when she was just 16 or 17, and the recent nightmare and the consequent noting by him in his personal diary, with a view to author his autobiography, he feels like weighing the desirability of giving some space to the sweet moments spent with Kalpana. In the absence of a firm decision to this effect, he is unable to pen down with conviction, at least some points for reference at the time of actual writing at some later date. ……. Having heard these words, spoken in a light vein by Mr Singhal, Vidya produces a short giggle before demanding elucidation, "Jija Ji, how long you had to provide a shelter to my sister, before she allowed you to take her charming face into your fondling possession?" Balram merrily raises a protest, as he says, "I haven't used the words you have chosen to attribute to my overt action. ……….. I am afraid that this very question asked by me to my father might have dealt a swear blow to him, as he could not have survived the shocking blow to his psyche. Maybe, our psychologist friend has some plausible answer to this paradigm, to weed out the rancor from the chain of my thoughts. But the bare facts of those days, hitherto kept hidden from all the men folk, excepting the one, whom I had lured into submission to my passionate desire for copulation, ………,” Vidya Gupta, daughter of Late Dr Sugandhi Lal Gupta and Sheetal Gupta tells self. …….. On the express request of his erstwhile pupil later turned girlfriend’s, Mr Bhutalia had arranged a one-to-one confidential meeting with her, immediately after their return from the Goa tour,, during which period they had come across each other, though the lady Padma Kapoor could not muster confidence enough to accost him. Of course, Mr Bhutalia also kept himself under restraint to take the initiative for accosting her, when the other lady in Padma's group, Mandakini Singhal, while in her husband's company had walked up to Professor Khanna, her teacher during her studies at the college level. …….. Therefore, she looks around and commences her plea very confidently, "Sir, how can an impotent male insert his penis into the female's sexual organ, I wonder at this ridiculous situation." Her manly posture and justifiably frank poser attracts a prolonged giggle from the audience, comprising of advocates, journalists and some litigants in the other cases. The judge waits for some time to let the audience's reaction subside and then asks Advocate Miss Gupta to resume. …….. As Hansa is sitting close by Nancy, she has noticed that the 'case' moving from right to left contained wads of currency notes, whereas the 'case' moving from left to right contained a few bundles of pocket diaries, duly wrapped in a piece of transparent polythene sheet. In a short while, both these Europeans stand up simultaneously, each holding firmly the brief case, in one hand and offering, turn by turn, their "thanks" to madam Pepsy with a simultaneous gesture of extending the his free hand to her for a handshake. ……… Even today, Kalpana is the great admirer of her adolescence hero, who had been teaching indirectly about the bold way of doing the things, while being confronted with newer situations around, every now and then. "Balram ji had once said that `life is like a river`. You cannot stop it from flowing. However, you may divert its flow, and that too only after a strenuous planning on your part that may need some sacrifice from you," Kalpana reminds herself of this philosophy, she had been practising in her life, during the past 45 years. ………… She too informs him that Kanika had met her in her chamber to tell her about the embarrassment Shaloo had to face at the last `bahu`-specific meet of our kitty, at the hands of our Hansa, who had learnt somehow that Padma Kapoor is her `mami` (maternal aunt). The moment Hansa pronounced her Maternal uncle's name as `Onkar Prasad Ji`, Shaloo rose up from her seat to move towards `loo`. ………….. The moment, a few persons supporting a dead body, followed by a few wailing women, including Mandakini are seen emerging out , many people rise on their feet as a mark of respect to the person, whose final exit from his home is taking place. The body that served this greatest democracy on Earth, for more than 3 decades as an honest internal security officer of the government, by way of splendid planning and execution of various projects, has now been laid on a somewhat raised platform, so that the visiting mourners can pay their homage to their departed friend, colleague, neighbour, relative or just an acquaintance, known to them as Mr Balram Singhal, a retired Inspector General of Police. ……… Muneesh smiles, "Sir, my second elder sister's last child is to be married next Sunday. My eldest sister, who had been your patient in the college laboratory on my special request and quite earlier at some doctor's clinic in Sadar Bazaar a few months after her marriage, has now, desired me to persuade you to participate in the wedding celebrations." ……….. Of course, when Muneesh had marked from a distance the presence of Mandakini Singhal in the company of a young woman in the guest house of the `Samaj`, it was with a great difficulty that he could desist from appearing before his `favourite` classmate during their youthful period of life. Nevertheless, when Mandakini was noticed by him once again with the same lady, besides one more woman, whom he had seen after over a decade, yet once again, when he was sitting beside his erstwhile teacher at the dining table, during the festivities to celebrate Ranjana's daughter's wedding over a week ago. …….. Thus, Muneesh felt that Mr Singhal might have been misled by this confession, sought to be made urgently, in case the details relating to the problem irrupting out of Hansa episode had been withheld from him till then. He was confounded over the result of his usual act of spying over the activities around his predecessor, since his having been declared `a terminal case` by the trusted doctors. The arrangement for keeping vigil on all the visitors entering or leaving his room was being recorded by the hidden close circuit tele-video camera supported by the hidden high-powered super microphones at various points. ……. The stupid oldie having been duly rewarded for outraging a woman’s modesty with a stunning slap was certainly overdoing his foolishness to attribute his act of cupping my breast to the fact of being under effect of liqueur consumed last evening.” ………….. “Keeping in view the initiative coming from the female those days, I should not have shirked to let her know directly from my mouth that I needed a period of at least two years, to complete my M.Phil I know it well that I had never thought of remaining unwed for my entire life. What have I gained out of this `modesty`?" This 77-year-old bachelor Mr Kundan Khanna is now engaged in ruminating over the `balance-sheet` of his attainments, at the fag-end of life. As per Dayal Uncle's wish it is their joint asset. Mandakini thinks it to be a coincidence that though brought separately by each from Dayal's house, both of them have immediately placed these valuables voluntarily on the jointly purchased platter, meant to be a memento for them. But the unduly long silence between these two chirping oldies has begun to cast its `killing` effect on the sincere, reasonably close friend of Professor Kundan Khanna, who is reeling under the impact of many an imminent repercussion of this joint venture of theirs. ……. Of course, he would have accepted her as his wife, had there been between him and her, at least appearing to bear something that could mean a semblance of a marriage. He keeps on helplessly staring into her face.

 

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