Friday, February 26, 2016

Poor of India

Poor of India

It was a cloudy afternoon (2 PM) of 25 February 2016 at Dakshineshwar Temple near Kolkata. The Darshana time was scheduled at 3 PM, therefore, the visitors were dispersed in the campus in waiting. Some were taking ritual bath at Ganga Ghat. 

A boy of 9 years age was throwing one square article tied with a rope into the water of Ganga and then pulling it, picking up something and again doing the same. We went near to him, saw him picking up coins dropped in the water by the pilgrims. The square article was a magnet. Wearing a short, he was storing his wealth in his mouth. 

We sat for a while under a Pipal tree in front of the residence building of Swami Rankrishna, where he stayed for 16 years. The place made him Ramkrishna Paramhansa from Gadadhar.

Little away, near a waste bin, an old man was sitting ukadu, in front of a wall keeping his back towards the people around. He has kept his carry bag and a 200 ml plastic water bottle besides. He was doing something in a torn empty plastic bag of haldiram namkin. He opened two small polythin bags, pored out little rice from one bag and little kari from another bag. Both together, it was a cup size quantity in all. Somebody has given him the leftover. But he was mixing them very carefully so that not a single grain of food fall out from the torn plastic, his eating plate. He took nearly 5 minutes in mixing that one cup food, as if he was waiting for the enzymes to secrete. A bitch, after checking the dustbin came near to him, looked at his meal and left silently, as if she didn't wish to disturb the old man. Then, the old man took another 5 minutes to eat this lunch with small small bites, eating slowly, chewing each bit 10-15 times, and at last he licked his fingers. Finally, with some sips of water from the used plastic bottle, he finished his lunch of the day of the destitute life. 

He then carefully washed that torn plastic bag (his lunch plate) and watch it around for couple of minutes (as if he was reading his fate or the fate of the destitutes on it), folded, and kept it back in his carry bag. The plastic carry bag was his only wealth of life, that carry couple of poor clothes and some plastic wastes, he uses for bagging and eating food everyday. 

Lakshmi couldn't see it any more, hurriedly went into the street market, bought a bronze plate  and gave it to the old gentleman with a request to eat all his meals in that plate everyday. He has agreed and put the gift in his carry bag carefully and went away. 

Thousands of Indian are living in poverty, with stomach fire on, they are unable to eat nutritious two meals a day, and thousands of us with enzymes off, are overeating and taking medicines to digest it. 

Food security act may serve grains to millions in the country but who will cook for the destitutes? We shall save from the showcasing expenditure, but do something for the destitute too. Why can't the religious places run langers for these people with the help of the government and the civil society?

Why can't we all live a simple life of Buddha and Gandhi? Poor in India are demanding in their silence.

25 February 2016


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