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Nonu's Fourth Birthday, In a Country with Infanticide and Honour Killings

A rare, Sunday, with forced ignorance to the attempt by the spouse to paint the feeble struggle to sneak some rest after constant running around in the time of organizational churn and race to targets, as a major sloth, and even worse, calling that sloth as key portion of character profile, I watch my lovely, recently turned four, rolling on the bed, making bubbles in the air and drinking some water from the bottle.

My life just as that of mankind can be divided into before and after my daughter.

As I rushed through the meetings on her birthday on 16th of May,sneaking in and out of the charged day, my mind invariably keeps going back to the fateful day four year back when at 8:18 in the morning, I got the word from the Doctor, Bithika Bhattacharya, that the earth has suddenly been blessed with a million new colors. I had read some website about first tings to do, and one of them being counting the fingers of the baby, and I remember, as I walked into the Nursery of Max Hospital that morning, I forgot every thing. I looked around lost at all the ten odd babies happily sleeping, quite unaware of the 'Big, bad world' they were entering into and as if drawn by some unknown force of attraction walked straight to stand in front of the baby who was throwing tiny, little arms in air and saw written on the anklet the pink ankle "B/o (Baby of) Seema Suryesh", with eyes closed as if in meditation, given away only by a naughty smile at the corner of her lips, or was I imagining. I wanted to shout, fall on my knees, a heart did beat a shade faster, just as once it did, when I went to bid farewell to her would be mother, in Raipur as she stood in the doorway of the train compartment, as the train sped away, and then when I saw her again in Indore, on a misty winter morning, when the love breathed new again as I took admission in MBA there. I did no such thing, ran my fingers on her tiny forearm, so small she was. I came out, the attendents looked at me expectedly, money came out from purse and I knew I will be hearing a great deal on it from wifey once she know, but I was too happy to be worried. I was a mountaineer reaching the top of the mountain. It was not an accidental child, it was not an accidental love, it was not an accidental marriage. All these things meant more than what they represented, each event underscored a principle, a meaning which went beyond the being. She, my daughter is the summation of all that I can be as a human being, in her echoes the sweetest melodies of human possibilities. It is not because she is exceptional, she is as exceptional as every child is to her parents. You do not need to watch a Television Show to appreciate how life blesses you in the shape of a child that she offers you, you just need to close your eyes and watch your child once again, as you watched her when you found her the first time, every time you find him or her, challanging you and standing up to you in defiance. Saw Ishqzaade yesterday, a lousy, poorly scripted movie on honour killings. The movie miserably fails in doing anything worthwhile to your thoughts or sensibilities, to me it did brought in a question. Can one actually go to the extent of killing an offspring or even feign the ones to killed in more respectable strata of society, simply to punish defiance, if for a moment one remembers that first moment when a father looks at the powerless figure in a nursery cot and imagine that the power which that tiny figure holds of changing your life, thereon? It is really hard to imagine a country like ours where marriage is primarily a way to babies, would face stigma like infanticide and child labor.


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