revealing conversation in Jharkhand’s Porahat forest
We were lost in Porahat forest. Even the
two CPI (Maoist) sympathisers riding the two bikes on which a photojournalist
and I were seated were not sure of the direction of the village in which the
People’s Liberation Guerilla Army’s squad was camped.
The message we received in Ranchi, 130
km away, was that a Maoist commander wanted to meet us. By November 2014,
Porahat remained one of the last strongholds of the CPI (Maoist) in Jharkhand,
and all those within it were high-value targets for security forces.
Aware that winter would end the day
early, we stopped the few people we encountered on the way for directions. At
one point, mostly to make fun of them, we asked a group of children who were on
their way back from school if they knew of any Maoists in the locality. Some of
them pointed in the vague direction in which we were already heading.
When we finally made it to the village,
Platoon Commander Jeevan Kandulna was waiting for us. He took his time opening
up, reluctant to even part with his name for the first hour, but when he did,
it felt like he had been waiting for someone to listen to him. The conversation
became more personal than tactical; instead of troop movements, we began
talking about how the murder of one of his sisters by a Maoist splinter group
made him join the CPI (Maoists) to exact revenge.
At some point, a second platoon joined
us. It had a large number of young boys. Mr. Kandulna explained that they had a
recent recruitment drive, which is essentially a conscription for nearby
villages. A short, dark figure walked up and sat quietly on the floor behind
Mr. Kandulna. During a lull in the conversation, he introduced himself as
Platoon Commander Suresh, but I had recognised him already as Dimba Pahan, the
brother of Jharkhand’s most famous Maoist, Kundan Pahan. I was not supposed to
identify Mr. Dimba Pahan; I had seen his photographs among a set
surreptitiously clicked by a source. Curiosity about Mr. Kundan Pahan’s
whereabouts got the better of me eventually and I mentioned him tangentially.
Mr. Dimba Pahan did not speak again.
When the meeting ended, the youngsters
lined up with their guns to pose for pictures against the setting sun, so that
they could only be captured as silhouettes. One boy of about eight walked up to
me, lugging his .303 rifle. “Do you know the way back?” he asked.
“Yes, I think so. Why?”
“It’s just that you asked for directions
to some of us on our way back from school,” he said.
NAVAGRAHA STOTRAM* According to astrology, the positions of the nine planets in the twelve constellations of the zodiac and their movements are considered to be quite significant. The nine planets ‘Navagraha’ affect every aspect of human life. They play an important role in the activities, physical and mental health and life of any individual. The unfavorable positioning of any of these planets can be the cause of problems, bad health, and stagnation for many people. However, there is a solution to avoid the ill effects of the position and movement of the ‘Navagraha’ in our lives. Navagraha mantras (or stotram) are simple mantras which work as powerful healing tools to reduce the negative effects of any of the nine planets. These mantras are Hindu holy hymn addressing the nine planets. Benefits Of Navagraha Stotram And The Way to Practice The Navagraha Stotram is written b y Rishi Vyasa and is considered to be the peace mantra for the nine planets. They are powerful m
http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/open-page/infinities-of-being-a-housewife/article17450374.ece Excerpts: "There is hardly any difference between the ‘job’ description of a housewife and that of the chief executive officer of a company. While the CEO steers a company forward, the housewife is at the helm of the household. The CEO may work 12 hours a day, taking important decisions in the field of production, sales, finance and human resources. The housewife is just as able an administrator. She, in fact, works round-the-clock. She also deals with physical, financial and human resources. Her decisions affect the lives of people and the well-being of the home. However, the work she does is not quite considered a ‘job’. A CEO gets paid in millions, while her work just goes unacknowledged. She rarely even receives gratitude; remuneration, then, seems like a ridiculous idea."
*SUNSET OF THE CENTURY: Rabindranath Tagore THE LAST SUN OF THE CENTURY SETS AMIDST THE BLOOD-RED COLOURS OF THE WEST AND THE WHIRLWIND OF HATRED. THE NAKED PASSION OF SELF-LOVE OF NATIONS IN ITS DRUNKEN DELIRIUM OF GREED IS DANCING TO THE CLASH OF STEEL AND THE HOWLING VERSES OF VENGEANCE. THE HUNGRY SELF OF THE NATION SHALL BURST IN A VIOLENCE OF FURY FROM ITS OWNSHAMELESS FEEDING FOR IT HAS MADE THE WORLDITS FOOD, AND LICKING IT, CRUNCHING IT AND SWALLOWING IT IN BIG MORSELS, IT SWELLS AND SWELLS TILL IN THE MIDST OF ITS UNHOLY FEAST DESCENDS THE SUDDEN HEAVEN PIERCING ITS HEART OF GROSSNESS… *Note: “The Sunset of the Century”, translated by the poet, from Naivedya; The English Writings of Rabindranathtagore, Volume II,Delhi 1996, page 466. Quoted in his article ‘Critiquing nationalism’ by K Satchidanandan (Frontline, November 14, 2014). The article takes you to a much broader spectrum. HAPPY READING(READ MORE STAN