Be the reason, someone ‘Smiles’ today

It was a fine day in Mumbai. The leaves in the park were blooming and grasses were scattered like a green velvet. The sky held a soft blue ray. The beautiful petals of the flowers were welcoming the people in the park. Everyone had a jovial face there. Almost all the benches of a park were occupied by the couples. There was one bench where a boy was waiting for his girlfriend with a bunch of flowers. On the other hand, an old beggar sitting in the corner of the park was continuously watching that boy. A boy who never offered him the single penny.

All the passers-by gave money to the beggar. The boy waited for more than an hour but his girlfriend didn’t come. While returning from there, he untied the small tissue cloaked bunch of pink roses and few small white chrysanthemums. The flowers were tight budded and stems were wet. The wind was perfumed by the strong fragrance of the flowers. He took out his white handkerchief, opened it and arranged the flowers elegantly in front of the beggar. He picked the steel bowl that was filled with few coins and notes, from beggar’s hand and kept it near the flowers. He also added fifty rupees note to the bowl. The beggar was muddled. He urged-

“What are you doing boy?”

Boy replied politely- “From today, you will be selling flowers instead of begging”

The fanatical response from the boy made the beggar weepy.

“You opened my eyes today, boy. Thank you for providing me the way to fill my stomach. Thank you”- Beggar exclaimed

Every day, the boy uses to give him a bunch of variety of flowers. From then, beggar started selling flowers in the park. And was earning more than he used to earn while begging. Suddenly, from one day the boy stopped coming to the park. His absence keeps bothering the beggar. Somehow, he managed to earn well.

A Few years later-

The moment boy entered the florist shop, a man hugged him.

“Where were you since these years?”- asked a man

The boy said surprisingly- “Is this your shop? That’s astonishing”

“Yes boy. This is all because of you. Tell me, where were you?”

“I relocated to different city for higher studies”

“Where is your friend?”- man asked

“She is waiting outside. Come and meet her”

The boy’s behavior, his attitude changed a person from a beggar to an owner of a florist shop. His girlfriend was also very much impressed by his mentality, hence she returned to be with him forever. We know life is too short, then why can’t we bring the smile on other’s face? The best feeling of Happiness is when you are happy because you have made somebody else happy. There is a saying-

“The greatest happiness in the world is to make other happy”

Be Happy!! Keep Smiling!!

“Humanity” & “Moral values”- losing the Importance

Yet another RAPE happened in the Capital this month. But, this time, Humanity has thwarted the limits. A 22- year woman was assertedly gang-raped by three men, after throwing her nine-month-old daughter out off the autorickshaw. Unfortunately, this led to the death of the child on the spot. On average, fifty crimes against women are registered every day in Delhi, including around four cases of rape. This is not only the case in this city but in mostly all cities of our country. Are we woman safe in our own country?

– NO!

Murder, extermination, sexual slavery, female infanticide etc, etc has become a need for Indians today and still, we call our country a land of Unity in Diversity, land of cultures, traditions. I do agree with the fact that – Humanity has no nationality, it is universal, but the question lies here is- if for the good work we can appreciate our country then why can’t we blame it for the weird crimes? Undoubtedly, Humanity has reached its lowest point. Females are neither safe inside the womb nor outside.

I had discussed this with my husband as to what can be the main cause of this rapidly increasing trend? One reason he pointed out is PUNISHMENT. For most of the victims, the reactions begin days or weeks after the rape. The amount of time the victim gets justice is a way too long. 6 months to more than years. And justice delayed is justice denied. No terror of police and conviction. Though the law is said to grant justice to the innocent, sadly, it is untrue in the case of Rape victims. Rape laws in India are extremely antiquated.  Seems, our laws in India are still not sufficient to control this crime which is taking place at an alarming speed. As a result, the culprits get another chance for the shameful act.

The next thought we had in our mind was that, is this the case of only India or any other emerging or under developing country? I thought why not google it. To my surprise, that’s not the case in India only. I see US and Russia in the list above India. So, it means it has nothing to do with country’s GDP. While the punishment in some countries is instant death, in other countries, the punishment extends from few years in jail to life imprisonment depending on the extremity of the case. I also think the law in these countries is also strict, then what may be the reason behind this?

Although we are looking at the monetary growth, what about the moral growth? Are we growing in moral values? One day while returning from office, I saw two kids of around five-six years fighting in my society. One of the kid said- “I will bring a knife from my house and will cut you into pieces”. Though I was amazed to see his fluency in English, but the sentence he spoke was out of my believe. The children these days learns English and are smart in using technology but how about the moral values? Are we focusing on teaching this to our kids? Does our education system focus on teaching these moral values? What one learns in the childhood is what molds him as a better person. Therefore, family values, respect for women, should be taught from the early age to man.

Nevertheless, the reasons perhaps are the overall low status, backward mentality, and lack of respect for women in India. But what about other countries, why the females are still suffering from these crimes? What might me the reason there? All measures to prevent rapes would be useful only if men start thinking high of women and make efforts to protect a women’s self-esteem.

Don’t let your “limits” define you!!

Bandipur National Park- the perfect destination to rejoice the beauty of nature. A place is five hours drive from Bangalore, has a variety of biomes including dry deciduous forest and shrublands. The diversity of mammals, birds, reptiles is the source of tourist attractions there. Around 3.00 pm, I along with my three friends started for Jungle safari (an activity by four-wheeler which takes us closer to the flora and fauna). Our guide- James, exhibited us with numerous wildlife including- tiger, leopards, elephant, lion etc. We were amazed to see his awareness on each creature present there. As the hours passed, we were given an hour break for the refreshment at one of the small restaurants inside the park.

This was the time when I noticed that the young fellow guide with utmost knowledge on wildlife had no legs. Hence, an inquisitiveness in me aroused and unhesitatingly I asked him the reason behind his being lame. He replied smiling-

“It has been more than ten years when I lost my both the legs in an accident.”

We were stunned and a friend of mine questioned- “But, why are you still smiling?”

Again, a calm reply from him- “Sister, I have only lost my legs, not my life.”

Though his sentence had a deep meaning, we were excited to know more about him. We kept heaps of questions and his response was inspiring and pathetic as well. He interpreted calmly- “I applied for many jobs but was being rejected everywhere. One day, I got an opportunity to apply for government job. I qualified every written round but in my final round of interview, I have rejected again because of my disability. Still, I did not give up and requested the interviewers to check my practical skills. I took them for jungle safari and explained them everything that they were expecting from me for this specific role. Therefore, they selected me for the position I am holding today.”

“Thank you for showing us another aspect of life”- I said

He added- “Come here, I will show you an appropriate example.

“We clenched this elephant here with this tree, when he was a baby so that he doesn’t run away. He tried ample of times but failed. As he started growing up, he assumed that his limit is only to this. Hence, he stopped trying further. And, look at the bumblebee, due to their heavy weight, aerodynamically, these shouldn’t be able to fly but the bumblebee doesn’t know that, so it goes on flying anyway. I hope you girls are going to follow the bumblebee rather than an elephant.”

“Life is limitless. Work beyond limits”

Here, Jame’s life is great motivation which encourages us to expand our mindset and work hard to achieve anything irrespective of our limits. We need to be fearless to maximize our opportunities and possibilities.

ससुराल क्या है ?

jiri-wagner-227868जब कोई स्त्री व पुरुष शादी के बंधन में बंध जाता है तो उसके बाद दोनों को एक नया परिवार मिलता है जिसे हम सब ससुराल कहते हैं l एक लड़की अपने ससुराल की बहु कहलाती है तो लड़का दामाद l खैर, ये तो मैंने आपको ससुराल की परिभाषा बताई l आइए जानते है ससुराल का असल मायने एक लड़की  की कलम से जो बेटी, बहु, पत्नी , बहन, भाभी, हर रिश्तो से पुकारी जाती है-

दुनिया बदल रही है, लोग यहाँ तक की चाँद पर घर बनाने पहुँच गए है लेकिन जब बात विवाह की आती है तो हम लोगों के सारे सिद्धांत, संस्कार सब खोखले से नजर आते हैंl आज लड़कियां हर छेत्र में अपना पर्चम लहरा रही है फिर भी पराए घर से अनजान परिवेश में कदम रख रही लड़की के लिए आत्मनिर्भर और विकसित मानसिकता के बावजूद ऐसी कई बेडिय़ां हैं, जो मन से उसे नए रिश्तों को अपनाने नहीं देतीं। जो मन में ज़िन्दगी भर के लिए गाँठ बन के रह जाता हैl एक बेटी के माँ-बाप उसे पढ़ा-लिखाकर, उसे काबिल बना के दुसरे घर भेजते है, लेकिन क्या वही प्यार, वही दुलार की इच्छा उनकी बेटी अपने नए घर में रख सकती है? बिल्कुल नहीं l ये वही घर है जिसे हम सब ससुराल कहतें हैंl चाहे बहु अपना सारा व्यवसाय छोड़ कर या घर से काम करने के बावजूद ससुराल वालो की सेवा ही क्यों न करे फिर भी उसे वो महत्व कभी नहीं मिल सकता जो एक लड़की को मिलना चाहिए l चलिए मै आपको पढ़ाती हूँ बदलते ज़माने के बदलते ससुराल की  परिभाषा-

  • ससुराल वो जगह हैं जहाँ लड़की ने एक बार कदम रख दिया फिर तो अगर वो अपने मायके जाने का सोच भी ले तो घर में मन-मुटाव पैदा होने लगता है l भले ही वो अपने मायके साल में सिर्फ पाँच दिनों के लिए ही जाती हो l
  • वो ससुराल ही है जहाँ लोग हमेशा बहु की तुलना बेटी से करते हैं l जहाँ लोग बेटी से बहु की बुराई और बहु से बेटी की तारीफों की पूल बांधते हैं l भले ही खुद की बेटी में हज़ारों अवगुण हों l
  • अक्सर बहु से पूछा जाता है- “तुम्हारी माँ ने तुम्हे कुछ नहीं सिखाया ?” मै पूछती हूँ  इन ससुराल वालो को किसने अनुमति दी है किसी के माँ-बाप पर आवाज़ उठाने को? क्या बेटे को कभी किसी ने सीखाया है- “अपने ससुराल वालो का भी ध्यान रखा करो, घर के कामो में मदद किया करो …” नहीं सीखाया किसी ने l फिर बहु से भी ढ़ेरों उम्मीद नहीं रखना चाहिए l
  • ससुराल ही है जहाँ बहु अगर बीमार भी हो, हर हफ्ते रिश्तोदारों का स्वागत भी करे इसके बावजूद दस बातें सुनने को ही मिलती हैl
  • दिन भर अपनी बुराई सुनने के बाद अगर बहु चुप रहे तो, बोला जाता है बात ही नहीं करती अगर वही जबाब दे, तो सुनने को मिलता है – आजकल की बहुए की जवान बहुत चलती है l ये सब सिर्फ ससुराल में ही होता हैl
  • जहाँ अच्छे काम करने में प्रशंशा तो नहीं मिलती बल्कि थोड़ा सा कुछ गलत होने पर बात आग की तरह रिश्तेदारों तक फैलती हैl

हमारे पाठको को जान के हैरानी होगी की ससुराल ऐसा भी होता है जहाँ-एक माँ, बहु से अपनी बेटी के ससुराल की बुराई करती है l बस यही है आजकल का ससुरालl l अफ़सोस की बात तो ये है की घर में होते अनबन की वजह कोई और नहीं बल्कि बेटे की खुद की माँ होती है जिसे लगता है की शादी के बाद उनका लाड़ला हाथ से निकल गया l मै तो कहती हूँ ऐसी माओं को अपने बेटे की शादी हीं नहीं करनी चाहिए, अपने पल्लू से बाँध कर ही रखना चाहिए l

मैं उन सभी ससुराल वालो का शुक्रगुजार करती हूँ जिन्होंने एक लड़की को बेटी जैसा रखा हैl जिन्होंने कभी भी ससुराल और मायका में कोई अंतर नहीं किया l आज हम बहुए भी किसी की नन्द हैं, कल किसी की सास बनेंगी लेकिन ये जो आज हो रहा उसे दोहराया कभी नहीं जायेगा l हर इंसान को अपने तरह से जिन्दगी जीने का पूरा अधिकार हैl

A girl with roses!!

“Sister, please buy this flower”- a perky little girl of around five years requested.

Every day I used to meet this cutest creature of God on my way to home from school. A young fair complexioned chick with a ray of sadness on her face used to sell roses at the traffic signals each day. That was none other than the sign of poverty and the struggling phase of her life. Many of times, her simplicity, innocent face, delightfulness was something I used to recall in class. Often, I thought of talking to her but could not gain the courage to proceed. Sometimes, I used to ignore her when I was busy in my studies, extra classes, sports.

One day, I noticed that she was not at the signal, hence, I waited for another ten minutes. But, could not found her presence anywhere. The whole day I was distracted, thinking about her. Even I could not sleep the same night. I thought of bunking class the next day and going to the police station to file a report. Mercifully, I saw her the other day with roses in her hand near my house. With utmost curiosity, I went near her and questioned about her absence on the past days. She replied prettily-

“I was at my home to take care of my younger sister”.

The way she responded, touched my heart and soul deep inside. I felt an angel standing in front of me with blood red roses and a milky face. I wanted to talk more with her.

“Tell me about yourself dear”- I said serenely

She was just blooming with her innocence and replied-

“Sister, my name is Rosa. I live a kilometer far from here and usually come here to sell these flowers”.

I added- “and who lives with you, Rosa?”

An instant reply from her- “My mother and two younger sisters”.

And our conversation continued for more than an hour where I came to know about her family and the cause of the poverty they were suffering from. Rosa and her mother- who was a maid, were the source of income. She didn’t tell me anything about her father. I was still excited to find an unanswered question. We became good friends and I asked her to take me to her home.

Against the dark evening sky, I went to a place which was an unsafe habitat. The crumbling walls were the indication of a scarcity of food and water there. It was none other than Rosa’s house. I saw her twin sisters lying on a bed who were not more than a year. She introduced me to her mother who was a thin, laborious lady struggling to provide with all the need to her children. I came to know that her husband died due to excessive alcohol consumption a year ago. I was stunned to know that her twin daughters were just seven months older in her womb at the time of their father’s death. With the heavy heart, I left her home and promised her mother that I will meet her soon.

I discussed the whole incidence with my brother and we decided to give our every month’s pocket money to Rosa’s mother. Rosa started studying in a school and left her job of selling roses. Somehow, her mother managed to provide education to all her daughters.

“The beauty of life does not depend on how happy you are, but how happy others can be because of you”

 Twenty years down the line today-

A tall and gorgeous lady came running and touched my feet when I was at the bank to deposit money. I was stumped and could hardly recognize her. The crowd of the surrounding kept staring at us. She said with a pretty smile- “Sister, rose?”

I was astounded and hugged her tightly. We were flooded with the happily rolling tears.

I reacted- “Oh my God! Rosa, is this you? You look like a model”.

She smiles and said- “I saw you from my cabin’s glass window. Where were you since so many years?”

She took me to her cabin which had a name plate with “Rosa- Assistant Manager” inscribed on it. She made me familiar with the incidents she faced in the past years when I lost contact with her due to pursuing my further studies in the different city. Being studious in studies, she was sent to the renowned college to complete her graduation. And was luckily placed in a reputed bank. Her sisters are pursuing graduation and her mother is leading women welfare organization. She thanked me infinite times for everything. I just hugged her again.

This is something called “Life” which comes with many ups and downs. Our genuineness and hard work matters always. We are only responsible for our own success and failure. We are blessed with every perk in life, still, we could not utilize it correctly. Thought of quoting here-

“Every story has an end but in life, every ending is just a new beginning”

A man who taught me the definition of LIFE!!

The incidence goes few years back. I was traveling to my home town, it was a typical Friday night and since it was a long weekend many of us were rushing towards either railway station or bus station to catch the respective transport for our desired destination. It was raining heavily and the roads were jammed with traffic. Somehow, I reached railway station, and saw my train crawling, I managed to catch it at last minute. In early hustle, I sat on someone else’s berth and only realized this when TT came to check my ticket. Since I was heavily panting, I was trying to relax a bit, then I saw a young man of around thirty – five years of age who was sitting in front of me. That fellow looked very ordinary and cheerful as well. Suddenly, my team leader’s call came up to ask whether I applied for leave in portal or not? At the same time my mom’s call was on wait. I was too much annoyed and screamed on the phone rudely . The pressure of work in the office, the anxiety of the future made me such troubled person. This is the story of every private employees today. Thus, I opened my laptop and started working to complete my pending office work.

The man was constantly noticing all my actions and he asked politely- “Beta, if you don’t mind, may I ask you something?” Grudgingly, I just gave up a green signal. Abruptly, I was wrapped up with endless questions from his side.

“Why are you looking so distressed at such a young age?”, “Are you the only one who is handling all the responsibilities of house?”, “or, the office work is killing you from inside”?

I just looked the other way and headed again to my work. After a while, he didn’t ask anything but kept his words mannerly- “This is your age to live life with pleasure. What is the benefit of earning so much money when you can’t keep yourself glad?” He spoke all that I never had thought about. Then I closed the laptop and began reciprocating him- “Yes Uncle, I completely agree with your words. Though I don’t have any family burden, still the office pressure disturbs me a lot”.

He responded calmly- “I am extremely grateful to the parents of today who send their daughters to work. But, that doesn’t mean you will make your life so complicated.”

I replied and questioned- “Again I agree with you Uncle. Anyways, you tell where are you traveling?”

“I am traveling to my village”- He answered.

I asked curiously- “You must be going to meet your family, your children. Right Uncle?”

He reacted calmly- “I am a farmer and I went to city to purchase laptops”

Farmer versus Laptop. I was perplexed and asked, “Do the farmers know how to operate laptop?”

He answered- “These laptops are for my school, dear. And he added- If farmers can work in scorching sun throughout their life, they can learn anything.”

I was a bit astonished and asked again- “But, you didn’t tell me about your family. Do they live in village or city?”

This question made the surrounding quite peaceful for some time. And then there was a patient reply from his end, – “Beta, there is no one in my family. I had my parents, my wife and two little children whom I lost five years ago in a train accident. Somehow, I recovered myself and worked hard to provide education to those children who lost their parents in that sorrowful accident. I want to teach them what I could not learn at my time. Being a farmer doesn’t mean I cannot achieve anything, this is all about the passion we carry. I know the same happiness can’t return but to get engage myself I started the school in the village. Whatever I earned for my family, I spent those pennies in building school. I never imagined that I will spent my life without my family.”

I was absolutely shocked to hear this, and could easily have noticed his eyes full of tears. I regretted my aching question. Yet, he gave an advice- “Never ever run for money, beta. Give time to your family as well. Money may come and go but if the family is lost, everything is lost. The way you talk to your mother is not at all accepted. Ask those who don’t have parents. They still wait for single call from them despite of knowing the fact that they will never receive such call now”.

The moment I realized my blunder, he had gone off. I could not even thank him for all that he had taught me in four hours of journey. It is well said-

“We don’t meet people by accident. They are meant to cross our path for a reason”

That was the time when I understood the real meaning of life. The reason behind our unhappy life is not only the money, it’s “we” who had made it so much complicated. We never value the things we have, we run for something which can’t be achieved. Life is so much brighter if we focus on what truly matters.

A dream that was never ours!!

This is a tale of year 2008, when I and my best buddy Sharon successfully completed our Intermediate examination. A day came when we were summoned from a school to collect our certificates and mark sheet. Unexpectedly, we met few of our seniors who came there to meet the teachers. We also had chit-chat with them for a while. Few of them were pursuing engineering, few opted for medical as their career but, Ankita Didi’s profession was different from others.

She was an Air hostess in domestic airlines and was about to get promoted in an International airline within couple of months. We found it quite interesting and we spend few more minutes on this discussion with her. She summarized us about the responsibilities and perks of this career. “Are you travelling by aero plane daily?”- an anxious question from both of us. “Yes dear, our duty is on flight only”- she responded calmly. For our further information, she also suggested us to inquire from a training institute which was a kilometer away from our school. We were highly motivated and somewhere in our mind we decided to proceed on this vocation. Frankly, this career was something we hardly had heard before. The two reasons why we were so much passionate about this career were: Firstly, we were extremely eager to sit on aero plane, where we never had travelled before. Second thing was handsome salary which an air hostess earns.

After our document collection, we returned home merrily. I discussed about this profession to my mother and she reacted skeptically- “I don’t know what you are talking about? I have not heard any girl doing this kind of work. Go and ask your father first”. I was in dilemma thinking- “If mummy is getting this much annoyed, there is no question of asking papa”. I called Sharon and told her everything. I was stunned listening the same story from her side. However, we decided to go to the training institute the next day. We just informed our mother that we will be going to another friend’s house tomorrow and might return late. Thank God, we were saved of not receiving a call every time from our home- An advantage of not having mobile with us those days.

Keeping our dream in mind, we reached our destination “Frankfinn Institute of Air hostess training”. There, a form was given to us to fill all the required details (Name, contact details, educational and family background). We were informed about the criteria for selection which included a written English assessment, Physical checkup and final interview round the same day. Luckily, we qualified the two hours of English assessment and were ready for the next round. Height, weight, personality was all needed for the physical checkup, we were eligible for the height, weight criteria but look wise Sharon was the perfect girl and I just met the minimum requirement. Gracefully, we were short-listed for the final round. Now it was time for the critical step of this career where we were given a topic and we need to speak for fifteen minutes in English, hesitantly. Somehow, we appeared for the final selection and after an hour, we were informed that, we will be receiving a call within a week, if selected.

We did not discuss about this interview with anyone in our house, not even with our close friends. We were waiting patiently for the outcome. And we also decided to convince our parents in case we both get selected. On the 6th day from the date of interview, Sharon got a selection call and unfortunately her grand-father (Dada Ji) received a call. Now here I can say, it was a disadvantage of not having mobile with us. Despite being proud on her, everyone in her house scolded her crudely. She tolerated everything but didn’t reveal my involvement. Somewhere I was depressed because of not receiving call but when I came to know about Sharon’s condition, I consoled myself. I just lost hope of my selection.

The very next day when my father was watching Television, a telephone buzzed. That call was none other than from a training institute giving news of my selection. Papa, yelled furiously- “How can you think that I will send you for this work? When did you apply?” Rather than a word of appreciation, I got a worthless lecture for an hour. This news scattered like a fire among my relatives. I could only expect shower of comments from them: “छी-छी एरोप्लेन में खाना बेचेगी?” (yuck, are you going to sell food in aeroplane), “हमारे घर की लड़कियां ये सब काम नहीं करती” (girls of our house don’t get indulge in these work), “कोई शादी नहीं करेगा फिर” (no one will marry you).

Although, it was our first try towards our dream career where with rigorous selection process, we qualified. But, the weird thinking of our elders had killed our dream forever. Unluckily, our dreams could not take off to the desired destination. Getting high to the sky was not our job. Finally, Sharon was being sent to Delhi and I went to Jaipur for further studies.

Now, it has been nine years from then, but those pitiful days are still alive somewhere in our mind and heart. We still regret those days and are also feel proud to get selected in the very first attempt. The day I first travelled by flight and saw air hostess, was the day I could not control my tears from rolling down. Today, when I ask my husband- “Is it true, you would not have married me, if I were an Air hostess?” He replied smiling- “How could I? You would have married to some pilot or flight steward there. You would have also enjoyed more fascinating life then.”

Still, I salute to their work and dedication, no matter what people have stored in their mindset.