Woman who killed her husband

Sunita Giri 8:59 PM |

I pulled Shova Aryal, at one side at the picnic spot, to ask some information about her parents. Which i knew for many years but not full only a line or two. There was a huge crowd of people around us. I told her as I am writing a blog about our life in Bal Mandir, and would she mind if I write her story there ? She was more than willing, even when I told her that I will use your full name here; and then she started answering all the questions I asked her.

“Your mother was in jail right ?” I asked her straight forward as i am not known to bit around the bush type of person, she said “yes”. “she killed your father, did not she ?” I asked her again.

“She did not killed him, but I heard that she hired others to kill him”, she replied.

“How old were you when you were admitted in Bal Mandir ?” I wanted to know more about the one with whom I have spent so many years and yet I really dont know the real story behind her. “it was pretty late, I was around seven then”, she responded “.....added again because for about two years my grandmother took care of all three, me and my two younger brothers.”

“I don’t remember, you were there in with your brothers”, I responded. “Yes, I mean of course, they were not there with me, as they were placed in SOS, Pokhara”, she replied clearing my confusion.

“Okay, do you know why she killed your father ?” this one was more important for me to know than the confirmation of what I already knew about her parents. “I don’t know”, why she killed him as I was only very small and my grandmother never mentioned about it”, she sounded helpless and curious at the same time, when I asked her that question.

“..... and your mother never mentioned you why she wanted him dead ?” I shoot another sharp question.

“No, perhaps I was never that close with her or she did not wanted to tell me”, she replied. And as if suddenly she added that, “one thing was clear for about 10 years, she did not knew where were we, after she was sent to jail. But some how she found out that I was in Bal Mandir, so then she sent one of her trusted friend to see me in the Bal Mandir. Then when I was studying on 8th grade in Padma Kanya School, I used to go to visit her frequently in jail as the jail was in Dilli bazar. When she saw me she was so surprised how grown I was, and once the guard let me go further and her out from her cell door, she just hugged me and cried,” Shova had very vivid memory of her first jail visit. She remembered every details of the jail, where was the bed and where was the room and how many corridor further she was kept in and the bed [ placed there for visitors talking purpose] outside the corridor to stay and talk with the inmates. “and ….” I waited her further to open up.

“I used to go to visit her with Devi, because it was she, who used to tell me, lets go to visit your mother. May be, she also used to miss her own parents so....” she went on, “.... she even used to give me money, which of course, given to her by her boyfriend, to buy sweets and a cigarettes. By then I have learned that she used to smoke, so every time I used to go to visit her, I used to give her a pack of cigarette. She had given me one long black sweater, which you can tie on your back with belt, it had very big buttons”, she reminisces.

But she never told you or your never asked her during those visits, why she killed your father ?” I came back again with the same question.

“No, never. Look I was growing up in Bal Mandir with so many just like me, I do not remember my fathers face, it really did not matter to me. To know why she did what she did.” Shova said. and continued “.....when she died I do not remember shedding a drop of tear for her.” I understand exactly, what she was talking about, we whoever grew up in Bal Mandir are some what different than those who grew up with their parents and attached emotionally; ant that is what we are not no emotional attachment to anyone.

“ ….and there is no hint for you to guess, why she could have taken that kind of drastic step ?” I persisted.

“do you know there was a nurse in Bal Mandir ?” she asked me, as if I remember the sister, “she used to tell me about my father, he was a cook at Teku hospital. Whenever he was angry he used to add so many salt or pepper either in lentil or in curry. She used to say that he had a very bushy mustache, so she used to call me ‘junge baje’s’ daughter, while she used to dress my wounds up.” When she saw me I was paying more attention to what she was telling me, she continued further, “my grandmother used to tell me later on he used to drink a lot, and may be he was very short tempered. My grandmother was a staff nurse at the Bir Hospital and my mother also used to work in same hospital, but she was not nurse. Perhaps she was a peon [office assistant] there, but I really don’t know the nature of her job.”

“Do you think he could have harassed your mother, too much under the alcohol consumption ? which she could not cope up with ? I tried to get a link here. “may be, but its only may be, but I really don’t know the reason behind it”, she said

“After my marriage also, we were in touch, she had sent a jumper for my first child, when he was born throw the hand of a lady constable who knew where I stayed. She was released from jail after 1990s political stir, citing they were inside for long time. However, at that time I was in India for about two months. So when she went to her home [Chabhil] she was not allowed to enter her house and nobody in her neighbourhood wanted her to stay in that area. I was so confused, how to accept her; because she was denied by the society and I did not have courage to take her in my house for the same reason. I really wondered how could I have handled the situation, if I was here. Some time I feel,it was right that, I was not here to face that situation. As she was rejected by this society for what she did, that could have caused so much problem for me to provide shelter for her and adjust in society.”

“Don’t you think, if you knew the reason, it would have been easier for you to face that situation ?” I asked her. She replied, “may be, but then it just did not hit me to know why ? ”, she continued further “... she then went on to stay in Nava Jyoti School, a christian run school for the disabled children at Baluwater and then started making tea and food for the teachers. They provided her a room to stay. With her one girl of my age was staying, and I really did not know who she was and why they were staying together. I did went to visit her there, but soon after her health started getting worse and the nuns took care of every thing, I mean all the hospital cost. When she was in Patan Hospital, we went to visit her there too. It was the nuns, who did all the necessary things during her hospital stay and also the cost of her last rite, but it was my husband who gave her the fire at the end. All this happened in just two years when she was out from jail she died”, she took a long breath.

“ and she died with the secret in her heart”, I asked her again, and then also added, “Shova don't you think,if only you knew, why she killed your father, would have helped you to face the society when you were so confused, how to handle the situation ? even if you were not attached with her emotionally and there was no feelings in your heart for her. Just a little bit of respect for your mother in your heart ?, because its not what otters thinks, its about what you think about her”, I was curious.

“ I guess, yes, but its too late and now my grandmother is also dead. She died about two years ago, so no way I get that answer.” she said.

Not even realizing, I left her wondering; why she was never curious of knowing the reason behind the kill, the big question why?

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Shova is now mother of two sons, one of them have just joined the college, she and her husband runs cafeteria in hospital or office.
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Sunita Giri 11:17 PM |

With 200 children inside Bal Mandir, there were always some children who were not normal, some disabled, some deaf who used to go to only deaf school in perhaps in Nepal , which is still inside the Bal Mandir premises and some children were autistic or down-syndrome. Those were the one, who could not go tot normal school, but, yet they too needed to teach and learn.

Volunteers for down syndromes : Some foreigners [white people], used to come, when I was aleardy in school and go, before I came back from school. As a growing up child in Bal Mandir, for me all white people were Americans and when they said, “NO, I am not”, then my reaction used to be always the same always, “ Oh ! you look like Americans.”

There was, this big room near by the office area, painted in all rainbow colors, and all kinds of pictures hanged on the walls. There were picture dangling on the thread which also was hanged from this side of the wall to other side of wall. All colorful papers and childish paintings on them. Their class room did not looked like our class rooms. It was a whole lot of different look than ours, because it was for down-syndrome children.

Volunteers for knitting class : so many people ask me where did I learn my knitting skills, which is so fine and perfect, than what they know. Well the answer is obvious, Bal Mandir, as it used to get, so many people coming in, to teach the best skill from what they already know. The art of sharing and passing is best part of this class. I myself was never ever in any such group although, there were many of my age group found the spot in those training classes. Kedar Shrestha, the housemother who hated me, must have, used her power to pull me from those classes, but it was not the much of complaining issue.

The one, who was in the group always used to share it with the rest of us, who were knit enthusiast, like me. Knitting was kind of staple skill or favourite time pass during the winter seasons, in the Bal Mandir. I think, those volunteers were from different countries like America, Korea and Japan. This gave us a chance to learn the best of all parts of the worlds little bit good skill from this and little bit good idea from that country. So, no wonder, if I have grasped all the best options, available there for me and made it my own style in all that and I am sure if, Kedar Shrestha, would have been alive, she would have coiled in red with jealousy. How good I am today on this skill, even though she had pulled me from all those classes.

Volunteers for Ikebana : I am quite not sure that his particular class was volunteered one, but there was this beautiful Japanese lady. She used to teach us this Japanese art of flower arrangements, which is called Ikebana. At the end of the training, when the exam was taken, to see how much we have learned, it was so surprising, that I have made it to the third position. Me ? on third place ? to some thing called room decor ? Nah, but then, it was truth also, whether I like to believe it or not.

Volunteers for physical hygiene : But the most life changing volunteers were from Nepal and these people perhaps could have been from the health sector. I am not quite sure, but perhaps they were doctors and nurses. They taught us to keep our toilets clean and wash our hand after each visit to the toilets. Prior to their visit and a week long [may be], training; toilets used to be Oh ! my God, dirty. There was not much of culture also in those days prior to ’85, too flush it, once we went to toilet to relieve us. Boys toilets, used to be even worse than girls, which is very common around the world and even after training, it did not changed much.

Of course, there was a man to clean it twice a day, but 200 children plus staffs and only about 20 toilets, needed frequent cleaning and lots of water to clean it. Those volunteers changed our concept, that toilets are meant to be dirty place. At least it cleansed in my mind forever.
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Lost and Found

Sunita Giri 8:27 PM |

I remember one particular piece of a story, my English teacher told our class, when I was in college. It was for the policy of lost and found. I cant remember much of that story, but one thing, what I remember very clearly is, if we find some thing which we want to keep it for ourself; all we have to do is, to ask in a lowest voice possible, so that no body in the crowd hears you. It will be handy because, you have asked in front of all and nobody came to claim it. Once you are done with that, you can keep it. But if you don’t like to own it, go and handover it to police or any responsible person who will ultimately handover it, to its rightful owner.

When I was in Bal mandir, I was allergic to dust [ which I am still ] to the max and no wonder, it used to make me so sick, most of the time. The dust allergy used to give me runny nose all the time, during winter seasons so, Vick's and inhaler was some thing, I have to have by my side on regular basis. As I told you, I was in Bal Mandir. Some times, we could not have some basic things, like Vicks and inhaler of our own. It was not that we were barred, from the easy access to the medicines, its only it was not for personal use.

Durga Pokharel, was younger than me and was like my sister. Okay, calling her like sister is some thing not very much understanding and giving much respect to her feelings. The mother side of a woman like loving and taking care of others, grew faster in her preteen and then teen years. Luckily, it was me, she was mothering; so undoubtedly; it was she who used to love me more than I. She was kind of caretaker for me and loved me like anything. One day, when she gave me a nose-inhaler I was surprised, so I asked her, “from where she got it ?” she said, she had found it but the story behind that finding is pretty interesting.

It belonged to other girl, lets call her Shanti. “..... It just had fallen from her hand, then I stepped on it [to hide] the Vicks inhaler. I kept standing there and pretending I had not seen it.” when the whole time she was standing on it.

She is nice to all and does not talk to anyone with loud tone and manner. Respects all and expects the same kind of behaviour from others too. She being very decent and docile person and has very unsuspecting character also to bluff others at times like this.

I asked her, “...how can you say that, this is what you found ? then she replied very innocently, “…..well she lost it and I found it.”

This is ridiculous and more ridiculous than that, was; I used that as my personal properly since then; as as she had found it for me; right ?

I bet, you have not heard any funnier story than this, about lost and found.
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Reunion Picnic

Sunita Giri 10:33 PM |

At the beginning of this year 2011 first Saturday of the first month, we went to picnic at Dhulikhel. It was pretty normal for Nepali to find themselves, in any picnic spots on any given Saturdays. Almost all the picnic spots are crowded with picnic enthusiasts.

But a picnic at Dhulikhel was organized by the new committee members of new bread of Ex-Bal Mandir students ( where ex-students from Shifal and Panchkhal also automatically falls. It in fact, was a reunion gathering, which was held to reunite, all the lost friends and their extended family members. So this picnic was giving us opportunity to catch up, all the lost childhood friends after more than twenty years time.

When, a middle aged man came to me, asking for “did you recognize me ?” I was clueless, it seemed I know the voice but not the face. I did tried to remember, but could not and I gave up. Then he said, I “I am Raju.” Around me, the same kind of events was going on, when we gathered at the Shifal’s big ground, which was a meeting point; from where, three bus was leaving for Dhulikhel. Fifty unexpected people had showed up making the total of the crowed to 200 plus. Every body was so excited, to catch up, with so many childhood friends.

Ramsaran, came to me and asked in mellow tone, “Sunita, don't look back at there, but tell me, who is she who is with Junkiri and others?” I have just heard the loud laughter and the phony anger in Sanumaya’s voice, for he, not remembering her; so I was sure that he was asking me about Sanu. When I told him, he quietly went back towards Sanu, and pretended that suddenly, he remembered her. Of course, it was not easy to forgive them, when you have shared the same kitchen and had gone to same school and played in the same ground for so many years. Everybody was surprised, that it was not easy to recognize, many standing in front of us and we had spent time together in Bal Mandir for so many years.

Whenever, I find myself in this vast circle of group, I feel so secure and comfortable. We have nothing to hide from each other, about our past and pretend, who we are not. Everybody knows, others problem and understands it. No doubt, its over crowded but still, its fun at the same time. There will always be, many small groups, on that big crowd and everybody finds their own group, in all that small groups.

At the picnic spot, it was very nice and sunny day. I danced more than three hours. I danced mostly on the young crowd. On the dance floor, a girl named Nisha, kept complaining me that, “how could I not remember her ?”, her disappointment did not wore off, even though, I joined her on dance floor for almost the whole time she was there. The idea kept nagging her, whole day, that I have no idea, she was there in Bal Mandir with me and I just could not remember her at all.

Food quality at the picnic was just okay, but who is complaining; it was almost not the highest priority on my list, compared for others. I was purely happy to catch up with so many childhood friends and danced all the day.

Nar Dai, was busy video taping my crazy, whakey and funniest dance, which he had never seen before. There were other guys also, who were holding their mobile phones high above their head to record my dance. As I was doing some Govinda steps and then some Shila ki jawani with a dance director friends of ours and then there was this drunkard on the dance floor, to copy. It was pure joy and fun to copy him and more than I was enjoying it, it was the viewers, who were having more fun watching me and my exaggerated move to copy him. He had taken some alcohol on an empty stomach and he was trying to do some somersaults on the dance floor.

I just love watchting guys dance under the influence of alchohol . Its more fune to watchg them rather than join them, or perhaps copy them.

I have seen a lot of people behave like crazy under the alcohol influence and dance them even they are scared of dancing. Please protect them when some people within the group like to take undue advantage and at times, some even try to tangle in an unnecessary argument with them.

We had a late lunch. While returning back home at bus I was with different group of people, [ not my age and time at Bal Mandir ] however, I could not change the bus. The young bunch of guys bored me to death with singling, ‘Pan ko pat, maya timilai samjhachhu din ko rat.’ They repeated this line for umpteenth times, under the influence of alcohol. Without much of break stop or bumpy ride, they were swinging back and forth and at times on the sides of the bus too, like a leaf. They were about 8-10 such guys there on the last bus.

Nisha, was with me on that bus. When a boy younger than her, came to her and greeted her very warmly, then asked her, “do you remember me ?” she could not remember him at all. He told her, who he was. She felt real bad after this conversation with the boy. She said sorry to him again and again.

Then she turned back towards me, saying you know what, its because I was angry with you whole day, so I met this boy at the end of the day only to remind me, we do forget some people in our life, who once used to be, so close to us. Then she said, “I am sorry.”

Well, I am looking forward, one more picnic this Saturday, with the same group. Cant wait to see them again.
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Who raised these monsters ?

Sunita Giri 9:33 PM |

In the mid ‘80s Bal Mandir was an apple of the royals. Of course, it was royals who was ruling the country so Bal Mandir, was the brain child of royals. That was also the time Bal Mandir was getting huge donations from the westerns countries. It used to get truck loads of goods, nutritious foods, best animal fat and sugar from America and some food like can foods and then hot chocolate drinks called P.V.M [protein, vitamins and minerals] and more things got lost in my memory zone. Although, I was bit young to get all the information in my hands, but the way we were eating variety of foods, in our daily menu was purely, because of loads and loads of donations pouring in for Bal Mandir. Normally, we Nepali, eat plain rice with lentil and curry as staple food, so it was the same case with us too. Days snack is also not so fancy, but in those days it was, at least in Bal Mandir.

It was purely, because the donations just poured in to support the 200 children in Bal Mandir and many more of its small branches around the county. During that time, some very smart teenagers in the Bal Mandir, mostly in there mid teens, saw staffs of NCO taking the donations meant for us, in their homes. They took clothes, foods, or whatever they could have hands on. It is said that those donations used to get distributed among the staff according the position they held, not the equal distributions. It applied to that flour and fat which came from America, regularly even though other stuffs were put on hold; in due course of time [perhaps due to chronic corruption inside the NCO].

It was that time, when I remember one preacher was arranged to give us special sermons, every week [perhaps], as it seemed too long for me. I guess it was not easy for me to remember, the preachers name, as I am not so religious even today; forget about when I was in my early teens. But my brother, who is very religious and who became christian at the age of fourteen tries to get it, saying, “may be, he was Khem Raj Acharya, as he was very big name in those days.” Today, my brother preaches across the nation, about the Christianity. The preachers was not the small time preacher, instead he was very famous in in those days. Even in those days, he used to preaches in other western country also to spread ‘sanantan dharma’. He was fluent in English and Nepali.

Unlike many, I am not much interested in sermons, as it does not sooth my mind, for some strange reason, those sermons do not have, its good impact on me. Instead, it works just the opposite. All, I want to do is to run away from the places, where such sermons or preaching goes on. I rather prefer to read it; if I want to, not hear it, when I am not in a mood for those preachings. But those were not the days or ages also, I could do what I wanted to, so we were needed in a big lavish looking living room of Bal Mandir. This particular room was called ‘baithak kotha’, used to get open, only for royals, but for some reason the same room was arranged for those preachings.

Imagine, how we survived those preaching from world famous preacher. When my full concentration used to be on his uneven moustache or tweaked lip while he was delivering his sermons. I don’t remember much of those preachings, neither I do remember how it helped me or others in the Bal Mandir.Llistening sermons is something like participating to release all my yawns at one go.

When I look back, I am trying to understand, why those intense preaching for teenagers ? My guess is, the children [including me] must have become very uncontrollable and undisciplined. They must not have shown the due respect towards the staffs at NCO also, who stole goods and foods meant for the children. Their stealing such stuffs, worked as an agent to diminish the respect for the the authority figure. Then must have not obeyed them also for the things they were told to do or follow.

Instead of realising what seriously went wrong or trying to understand its true reason, they were choose preaching children, to be nice and good. It was the character issue in the authority team but; they were pointing towards at the children for all the problems associated with this. Some children must have, called names from back, when they were heading back home after office. Things could have gone beyond imaginable, so one of the staff must have come to this conclusion to call some body to preach us, so that we will regret and realized our mistakes and then go through the cleansing method at that age.

Today, it really makes me think hard, why do we have to go through the cleansing process, at that age [all teenagers], when it was the authority and staff members of NCO, who were on a looting binge and loosing respect, in the eyes of children inside the Bal Mandir ?

They are right, when they say, its easy to point out, rather than self search.
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Meet Sunita

Sunita Giri 10:04 PM |

“Meet sunita, she is from Bal Mandir.” was one of the line, I have heard many many times during my college days. It seemed that, it was Mrs. Shrestha favorite opening line, and she would not give it a miss to say this line whenever somebody from her office caught me with her. She grabbed every opportunity to say this line to introduced me, to them and those were the people, I have hardly encountered again in my life. Lets say about 99.9% of them, came never ever; in in my life. Still it was an introduction line, which never changed. It all happened, when I have just started attending College.

It was the wake of ‘90s, in the midst of all political stir in the country, which had caused her to leave her job from NCO [ Nepal Children's Organisation]. For some time, she was working in MS Nepal a Danish project, where I used to go to visit her. Those visits were meant to collect my rent and college money from her. Due to her busy office hours, I was needed to go and collect it from her office at Kamal pokhari.

Bernhard Rutz, a kind heart Swiss man, who is now the Founder of Prabina Foundations, used to send money, to her, and then she used to give it to me so that I could continue my college.

Then, for very long long time, I did not get it; why those were her opening lines. But, a couple of years ago, in a board meeting of Prabina House, I was casually telling, a senior member of the board, how our life was in Bal Mandir, especially how we ate those insect filled, shoddy and smelly rice, non-vegetarian green vegetables. Then Mrs. Shrestha remarked that, “I thought, you never liked, to be reminded you are from Bal Mandir.” Then, I said, “of course, I don't like it to tell people, to whom, I will never ever going to meet again, in my life but I do tell people I keep meeting them in this or that way.”

Honestly speaking, I was never embarrassed or conscious of being raised in Bal Mandir but now it hits me that there were people who were around us to make us feel embarrassed for  our situation. anyway I was not aware of it then.

Long before, I started writing my blog, I used to tell my close friends in Hotel [ I worked in The Everest Hotel for about seven years]; “you know why I am so strong ? its because I was fed all insect filled and stony rice, during my childhood and that made me so strong, mentally and physically.

Me, not being so smart to understand it fast, I did not get it right, there, in that meeting room, but in my private time, while reflecting her line, it slowly sink  in my mind. Some thing in my brain cracked opened, clearing the blur vision, from my memory lane, which had happened almost twenty years ago. Its now became so clear, I mean crystal clear. when she said I never liked being introduced as a girl from Bal Mandir. the next two years or so, as I used to go to collect money on monthly basis, she kept introduced me that line to every possible person in her office. She knew it, with my body language that, I was not comfortable with that opening line. I was raised in Bal Mandir, so I lacked the confidence to tell her how I felt about it. I could never ever open my mouth, not to introduce me like that, but watched her helplessly; as she kept introducing me like that again and again.

Now, I get it; she did it intentionally, she must have taken joy and pleasure when she did that. It also could be it did not matter to her how I felt it. But, how come it can be fun to shrink somebody's self esteem, who is already too shrunk ?

Note : Read Greed has no depth, to know more why we were eating such food.
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Wild strawberries

Sunita Giri 9:32 PM |

During the long winter vacation and when I was preteens, there was not much to do in those days, no television to pass time and almost no books to keep me busy during those days and hold my restlessness. Knitting was the only option to keep us busy, but doing it all day and week and months was definitely not fun. So, I used to sneak out, to take a stroll in the forest; which was behind the back yard of the Bal Mandir. For a girls of my age, nobody expected me to take a stroll, in that forest, all alone. I was not aware then, but today I know it; why I was there all alone to take a stroll. I was a restless child, as well as fearless also. I was fearless, not only with the people around me but the unknown things around me also. Wheather, it could have been the eerie silence in the jungle or the things nobody prepared for, in that the jungle.

Bal Mandir was well protected from tall walls around the four boundaries, so there was nothing but different kinds of birds in the forest or some sneaks too. But to scare us from the unthinkable nannies used to tell us, that the forest was filled with all kind of wild creatures. It was not, except for that small and harmless insects. However, it is another fact that, even a smallest caterpillar is enough to sent me in almost into like half coma.

But otherwise the forest had nothing, as such to harm a person of my age. Nothing that was which a real jungle have to pose any kind of threat. It was a different kind of feelings, to stroll alone in the forest and even try to cross some half broken wall to go further. Some times, we used to be there with other boys or some girls also, and some body had already made some holes or bring that wall from one side of the corner to make it easy, to pass to another side of the forest, which was more inside and more quite place to be and of course eerily silence area. Except, some birds used to make noise and I was definitely, far away from the daily noise Bal Mandir. Ever so crowed and noisy place, but who is complaining ? we got used to of all those noise. But at the same time, taking a stroll in the forest, was quite fun. It was very tranquil place and I can not describe more in words, how peaceful place that was; to be. It must have offered me the much needed silence, from all the time chirpy and noisy crowed of Bal Mandir with 200 children to make it, all the time.

Its not that we did to do any thing, during those vacations but I was restless and very restless kind. reading and knitting always was not enough to hold me for long. Because staying at one place while reading and knitting was also boring, even though how good pattern you are learning or doing or how good book you are reading. So sneaking out into the forest was a good and much needed escape for me. The forest in fact it was not that vast as a normal forest should be, its was big for me when I was growing up in Bal Mandir, as a child but now its just the vast property, which was unkempt properly.

Occasionally, I used to find some things to eat on the grass floor, besides some fruits, like wild strawberries, or the other wild fruits. We used to taste it not even knowing it may be poisonous and might be fatal to my health I used to eat it. Wild strawberries are of course, much smaller than the strawberries we can find in the market. I came to know about it only recently when this Mike Hawk was talking about this small berries in his show Man, Woman and Wild, which pulled me back in my memory lane.

We used to eat all kind of grass and roots when we were in the Bal Mandir and its so strange to learn today that it never made us sick or killed us. We do talk some times those things only make our digestive system strong that people thought otherwise. And look at us we are so healthy regardless of our so unhealthy eating habits. Our digestive system is unbelievably strong than other wise, it would have been. In fact its stronger than those, whose eating habit was a lot fussier than ours.
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Illegal child

Sunita Giri 10:27 PM |

I was watching this crime show on TV. They were showing a story was about a girl, named Neha. She was from a small village of India, who killed her parents, both mother and father. She first smothered her mother and then suffocated at her throat, until she died and then stabbed her father on his chest with such force it killed the old-man. The investigating police team, started their work, what came out was more eye opening, than the actual killings, which she had committed of her own parents.

Although, I did watched, this story more than twice, yet I did not get it clearly; why her mother was repeatedly telling, her in such a manner, she was an illegal child. However, it was quite obvious, if her step-father treated her very very badly for being the unwanted child in his home. Apart from she being treated like the unwanted child she was denied the basic things in her life while she grew up watching her step-brother [younger] getting all that without much effort. Basic things means school fees or extra course to enhance her skills, which she needed to be normal in the society. Not just that, she was vanished from all the family pictures too.

It was years of watching them treat her so poorly and badly made her feel like a rejected person in her own home by her loved ones. One day, Neha visited her mother, after two years, when she needed help from her mother, to pursue her study; which was already denied from them turned out so bad, the situation took such wrong turn, it ended up killing Neha her own parents.

The boiling point, in this all, was some time ago Neha had married a guy, Abhishek the step brother of her best friend Seema. He was equally abusive to Seema. Besides all other things to treat her badly, he also used to sexually abuse her in the name of teaching her some family manners. As Seema, occasionally used to snap back towards her step-mother, and then she used to tell it to her son and then he used to go to the the kind of extremes, only a man like Abhishek can understand how and why side of it. One day Abhishek, took the unwanted benefit from Neha, when she was waiting for Seema, in her house and then raped her. Neha, had no option but to marry this guy. He belonging to the lower caste or so the family of Neha did not allow for this marriage but to Neha the decision was already made. Abhishek had raped her, so he had to marry her too. When Neha visited that day to her mother she wanted to tell so many things that went in her life in these two years and also the truth about her marriage and rape. Just then her mother snapped, “you must have invited it.”

While I was watching this, story narration on the television, I was so thankful, that I was not raised by such parents, especially mother, to go through such situations; as I am not known to have tremendous patience to tolerate, such kind of abusive behaviour on me not even by parents.

This was very disturbing story, its not easy to shake my head and forget it, in a matter of days, and then move on in my life. Then it pulled me back in my memory lane. I have my share of experience living with an illegal child, not only in Bal Mandir, but I also shared a room with her for about two years, when I was in college.

Thank God for our growing up process in Bal Mandir is ten times better than any family like this. We become tolerant towards any kind of background of a person and do not judge them; the way, people judge them in society. Beautiful part of it was, we were not raised to treat anybody, like the girl [Neha] was treated in her own home by her own parents. This was the best part of being grown up in Bal Mandir. We give a damn to the fact, who is legal or who is illegal even today not just when we were in our teen and innocent years. Such upbringing can only happen in the family, as they say it, in society. Personally speaking, me, not being a social animal, can say it so proudly, society my foot; where people judge other people, purely, based on their backgrounds. Society is filled with fake and pretentious people, who form the opinion not what i think but how they think.

First time, when I heard about she being illegal child, is long before, I even knew the meaning of illegal and to go and see it on dictionary. A housemother must have mentioned about it, which one, I really cant remember now. But the word illegal stayed in my head and somehow I figured, it must be some thing not good.

In Balmandir we call our inmates from all kind of possible nick names. like lean, thin, lanky, fat, fattu, black, blacky or find your own nick names so I used to call her Bhote, I used to call her this way for so long, when I wanted to change it, by calling her in her real name it was she, who was not comfortable. so I still call her Bhote.

She was a child of a domestic maid and the father of the child was her master. She kept Bhote, with her until she was about five or six, but when it came to her whole future she could not keep it with her for long and then admitted her in Bal Mandir. However, she had been working on the same house. When Bhote was left on the Balmandir, she was posted in Bombay house of the same master, where her mother was required to do only dry works.

I did not like Bhote’s mother. She was not the joy to be around, as she was hungry for sympathy and scared to death that her daughter will end up like her. Now I understand it, but then I did not get it; why ?, instead it only irked me to the max, why she was so finicky about Bhote’s boyfrined, which she had, when she was only in 10th grade.

I used to tell Bhote, how I felt about her mother, and she used to say to me, that she to was not comfortable some of the things about her [ teenagers they do not like their parents, even if they meant the best for them]. There was no mention about her father, never ever. As for the Bhote, she knew only what was said to her. He died, when she was very young. But the truth is she is an illegal child. But her visiting relatives leaked the information to the staff, although, her mother was tight lipped about this bitter truth about her life. There fore, I get it, now; why her mother used to behave strangely towards her only boyfriend ? It was hard to have answer then, when I myself was in my teen years. There were so many dots, which now finds it link so easily, but then..... it was not easy to link it to the missing points to make a full connection to all the given dots, which I have already got, and which was always there right under our nose for us to link it.

Bhote’s boyfriend was very decent and sweet guy, It was he, who sent her school and then picked her fees and her room rent as well as food cost during her stay with me. However she was a beauty without a brain. All the educations, she got in her life but she became exactly like her mother, ended up being a domestic maid. What a wastage of education. No body needs to go to school and then college to be a domestic maid. She did marry the same guy whose name is Amrit. He was a national champion on the swimming and used to teach, the then crown prince Dipendra Shah also. Today, they are still married and they have two college going children now.

The stark difference, between two illegal child here, is one who was raised by her parents in the cozy and comfort zone called home, ended up killing her own parents due to harsh abuse, which she had to go through out her life... but my room mate in Bal Mandir and during my college, found a man of her dream, much earlier and marry young to become the youngest looking mum. There are people, who still tells us in vauge but different language, that we are out of the society, we are some body not at par with them.

Again, I say this loudly, society, my foot.

Good news for Neha and to us who are looking for better society to live our life always is, Indian court gave bail to her and her case is under the court. She was not punished for life sentence, for what she did and may be out from spending her whole life behind jail if, only if; she gets good lawyer to defend her in court. Her logic to defend her was.... they always said “I was an illegal and unwanted child, so I did the illegal and unwanted work.” One police personnel asked her, “why did not you reported, about the abuse on you ?” she replied that, “parents are the face of God, so you don’t complain about them, not even to God, right ?”
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