Location: Siliguri, West Bengal.
The red sari with that maroon border I am wearing conveys that I’m a “Suhagan”. This is what people say. But, I still have a little heart and a big dream. Will the world believe? Well, my heart is a stubborn; it doesn’t bother to listen to the world.
School was the place I had heard of when I was 9. “This is for learning what you haven’t learnt.” A voice from the radio exploded. “I had learnt everything required for farming.” I murmured.
Why school then, if ploughing in the field is the only knowledge you need of? I’m glad. I didn’t waste my time and dad’s money in the place I heard of. I laboured hard as a kid.
Diwali was my favourite. I better say colourful lights made me feel happy. I loved green. I waited near the traffic lights to knock at the motionless window pane. “Pretty diyas for beautiful people!” I exclaimed. Wasn’t I beautiful? My heart mocked. For them it was just a medium of decoration, for my boss I was a medium of slave. Today, I love red. And I hate green.
Who saw me ploughing the field and getting forcedly married at the age of 16? Oh. Sorry, at the age of 14. Obviously, the world did, didn’t they? They had those sweets and the delicious North Indian paneer in my wedding ceremony. I do remember. They must have forgotten.
I remember, Hide and seek was my favourite game. That beautiful Car in the lawn gave me a little privacy. A little privacy? I guess, It was a modern day slavery. How hide and seek made me travel from my decent village to a modern country. And then I had to seek a different place to hide. That day, I learnt the definition of sexual slavery. Aged like Mr. Sharma uncle, I wish to ask him, isn’t molesting shameful? No, would’ve been his reply.
Just like the border of my sari people could resemble and visualise the outside story. Easy to conclude. Isn’t it? Deep it stands inside. Different from the visualisation of the world. It is much like the crystals in the ocean when one has to dive beneath. And more like a ray of hope in my face lifting up the veil of injustice.
We do not always wait for green traffic signals. A minute of wait makes us feel hopeless. Isn’t it? What about human trafficking? Oh. Human trafficking is easy. We are waiting since many years. Aren’t we?
Well, a red hand is holding me back. An alien skin is asking me to face the world confidently. What a paradox! Humanity. Will it be visible someday?