A story of compassion, empathy and love for humanity!
Scared of her step mother she escaped from her house, for six months moved around till she met a man by the name of M S Nazki! The kid knew that she was in safe hands!
By: Major Kulbir Singh
This may look like a fairy tale to you, or a story of the good old years where a girl is saved by a man and handed over to her parents so that she is not taken for a jumbo ride by some bad and ugly in the society because such things are not uncommon today. Rozi Begum (real name I’m not disclosing) escaped from her house to get away from the wrath of her step mom and landed in Mendhar. She moved about for days together in this dangerous environment where the virus is hunting down people, lived in hiding in some corner dungeonsof the Mendhar market where no one could spot her. Food she managed somehow but this was not the way for a young girl to strive on. Over and above the factor called destiny was not with her but it was not for long as she did meet someone who put her on the right path which eventually went to her house which she left, utterly in frustration and despair. Maybe the good days for her are back big time!
It is said that daughters are to be loved and in these times which are really horrible they need special protection. In this case Rozi wasn’t that lucky. She was born alright but unfortunately the lap, hug, kisses and the embrace of her mother were not in her fate for long. Her mother died when she was small yet understood that her mother would not come back and she (Rozi) would have to travel alone in this world. As per my friend Nazki when he met her she was volatile, the expression in her eyes was bitter as nightshade. She did tell him that there was no end to regret. The chain that brought her here was long. ‘Why should I regret it when the people of my own house are not bothered about me. My father who married the second time never liked me, my step mother had developed a hatred for me, slaps and beatings had a routine. It was in hell zone, leave me aside no one could have lived in that rat hole’. These were the words that came out at a breathless frustrating velocity from her mouthpiece. MS is a journalist and a writer by profession so obviously he dug deep and she further related, ‘sometimes I would cry. I was so lonely, she did say. You have no idea how lonely I was. And I had friends, I was a lucky one, but I was lonely anyway. It was nice to be outside, away from the devil’s eye of my second mother. I do not know why she could not stand me?’. This was yet another barrage from her lava ejaculating tongue.
She further said, ‘I admired my real mother always, although at times things between us were never easy. But that is between every daughter and mother. We have been staying at Sagra for a long time now and everyone knows me and loves me but my step mom no way. She cannot stand me and the reasons I do not know. She always expected too much from me, I felt. She expected me to vindicate her life for her, and the choices she’d made. I didn’t want to live my life on her terms. I didn’t want to be the model offspring, the incarnation of her ideas. We used to fight about that. I am not your justification for existence’ I said to her once. This was pure anger that had accumulated in the girl’s heart.
Step moms usually say, trying to make someone love you is like trying to climb uphill during an avalanche. This looks to be an over dramatized version. Some may say that external influences create internal chaos. True this fable goes well in the interiors and backward areas. And some would say, I tried to make my husband make his daughter like me. After ten years of failed attempts, I decided to make myself change. I think the third is always a better option. By the way the lady at Rozi’s home is after all a mother although a word ‘step’ is attached which most of the times does not get on well and the daughters simply do not like it because they consider her as an intrusion into the family.
Nazki did feel emotional at her predicament and thus decided to help her out and subsequently went about it in a methodical way. He heard Rozi’s story in detail which went something like this.
- Rozi Begum a young girl from Sagra village in Mendhar Tehsil returned to her home after six months.
- The girl’s return home was made possible when she shared her story with M S Nazki, a friend of mine, well-known journalist and a writer of par excellence. I would like to add here a few more words, a wanderer, story excavator and anecdote collector. This was one amongst many of human love that he has fetched God knows from where! *This is a tale of her prolonged stay in the Mendhar bazaar, leaving her home and relatives behind.
- She did start stuttering and scared but later on got aggressive as I mentioned above and MSN listened to her patiently. ‘I was forced to leave my home, my mother had died and after sometime of her death my father went in for a second marriage.’
- ‘My stepmother used to beat me innocently and she had never missed any chance to make sure that I remained in an oppressed environment and hence was in compelling distress’, she elaborately mentioned.
- ‘Leave aside my mother, even the attitude of the rest of the family was not good to me either. For some time it was okay, I bore the suffering with patience but I knew I had reached the breaking point’, she continued.
*’’I used to miss my late mother so much because she never ever scolded or beat me as this lady does. Therefore in utter frustration one night I decided to leave home. I left, traveled in the night and reached Mendhar Bazaar which was going to my home for next six months’, she further said.
- ‘Honestly speaking I was fed up with my life, I wanted to go home and thus prayed to God every day in the evenings and in the mornings. And perhaps God heard my wail when from nowhere a man came to me and listened to my sorrowful story with great patience’ she concluded! The man was the great anecdote collector from Mendhar and I need not tell his name.
- MS has a very sharp functional brain. He immediately called up DIG Rajouri Poonch Range Vivek Gupta and informed him about this young girl. Thereafter the Police activated itself with SSP Poonch Dr. Vinod Kumar coming into the middle of the affairs at hand. The instructions percolated down the channel to SDPO Mendhar ZA. Jaffri and it was SHO Mendhar Manzoor Kohli who was tasked to make sure that the girl reached her home in Sagra. Ultimately she did comfortably.
- She was taken to her home where she is fine and happy now. Hopefully the things will get settled with the step mother realizing her folly and the daughter not going in for such drastic measures in future.
- The Locals were overwhelmed with MS Nazki’s dedication and initiative for ensuring that the girl reached home safe and sound. The role of the police cannot be forgotten because this was a sensitive case of a runaway girl scared of her step mom and hiding in Mendhar Bazaar. Wonder why others did not take notice of her? Had someone she would have been home much before. But perhaps she was destined to go back today!
So finally this story came to a happy end as Rozi reached her home. What will happen ahead no one knows but here is a piece of advice for both of them. I mean the mother and the daughter, though I’m no one to offer one. The daughter should never say to her step mother, ‘I thought about you all the time. I used to pray that you’d live to be a hundred years old. I didn’t know. I didn’t know that you were ashamed of me and the truth is simply this: No one owes you anything especially I just do not.’ This looks outrageously rude and sarcastic. And a stepmother should always think before speaking to her grown up daughter, think on these lines perhaps, ‘I want to say this to every stepmother: take it a little easier, try not to be so insistent, try not to have your desires dominate and not just with the stepchildren, but with your husband, your family, your friends. The moment you step back from whatever it is that exasperates you, you get an unrestricted view of the situation and you can take a breath before you move forward with positivity.’
Step mothers incidentally are not dark unpleasant creatures. They may be rude but can be brought over by love. Hopefully Rozi and her mother will try that out hence forth and live happily together!