An Unknown genius
A labour leader
By Kodavatiganti Kutumba Rao
There are several ways of
achieving fame. Some do it by living a hundred and fifty years, others by acquiring a man
of seven hundred pounds. Sometimes people manage to acquire fame of a somewhat inverted
nature. Though there is no record of anyone acquiring fame by being stillborn or dying at
birth, it is true that people, who weigh only thirty pounds even after they are
fully-grown, do become famous. People get famous for doing certain unnatural things.
Nobody speaks of persons who can thread a needle with their hands, but if anyone can do
the same thing with their toes, they are exhibited and you pay to watch them thread
needles with their toes.
I knew a man who could eat a whole
sheep at one sitting, but he did not become very famous because of it. His real fame was
acquired when he wrestled with Kodi Ramamurthy (a famous strongman of India, hailing from
Andhra, who had borne elephants on his chest) and was defeated. When I heard of this
incident from his own lips, I could not doubt the real joy he got from being defeated by
the Master! He knew that fame could be acquired even through a defeat.
I knew all this for a long time so
much so that I was not greatly surprised when the other day, America felt proud of its
failure to send a rocket to the moon. The rocket, which started on a journey of a quarter
of a million miles, burst within the visible range of Mount Everest and its possible
journey of five days or so was abruptly terminated at the end of seventeen seconds.
It is the nature of a rocket that
it should explode just as it is in the nature of nuclear weapons that they should wipe out
life. But this lunar traveller burst too soon. Haste appears to be an American trait. We
know with what haste the American armies once crossed the Thirty-Eighth Parallel in both
directions. Subsequently, the American forces exhibited haste over several other parallels
but it is neither here nor there.
Of course, haste is not speed. Had
Ike, Dulles & Co. drawn the distinction between the two, there would be considerable
easing of world tension.
Even the American statement that
they were the first to have made an attempt to hit the moon and failed seems to be hasty.
I am afraid that several attempts have been made to hit the moon long before the Americans
thought of failing at an attempt of that nature.
"Having failed at an attempt
to hit the moon", a knowledgeable gentleman once assured me, "the Soviet people
have made capital out of their failure and invented the inter-continental ballistic
missile." It is quite usual for scientists to achieve knowledge through their
failures and since the Soviet Russians have abolished capitalism, it is quite proper that
they should make capital out of anything and everything. But the scientists of America,
the Mecca of capitalism, do not have to stoop to such things. They have dollars for
capital and their failures are scattered on the oceans, ships, the fish and so on. However
this does not concern us.
What is more to the point is that
I once knew a man who aimed a rocket to the moon. I'm afraid it did not reach the moon,
but I cannot prove it. He keeps asserting that his rocket did hit the moon and anyone
could go there and see it with his own eyes.
Let us call this man Lingoji (I
cannot reveal his real name as he is occupied in the making of crackers and things without
a licence.) Before the system of licensing was introduced, he used to make crackers that
were fired on the festival of lights and on marriages. His rockets were particularly very
fast and went to great heights. People who saw his rocket up in the night sky would at
once recognise it and say, "That one is Lingoji's thing!" As a matter of fact,
it was admiration for his rockets that prompted me to make his acquaintance.
Lingoji worked secretly without
anyone to assist him. He was afraid of others coming to know his secrets. At first, his
own children had assisted him. In the final stages of manufacturing, he forbade even them
from being near him. I was told that Lingoji at one time, had his own brother to assist
him while his kids were too young. But Lingoji had suspected that his brother was prying
into his secrets and drove him away. After that, this unfortunate brother starved for a
while and then turned beggar.
It was Lingoji himself who told me
about this affair. "If he really got hold of your secrets", I said to Lingoji,
"he would have earned some money. Since he is evidently innocent, how is it that you
allow him to live as a beggar?"
"What you say is true,
sir", Lingoji replied, "but don't you see that I have made an enemy of him. If I
take him back, he is sure to get at my secrets. A woman declared disloyal even by mistake
is bound to become a disloyal wife forever. Sir, you must realise that there is no
difference between a culprit and a man accused."
Lingoji taught me a great
political truth. Originally, he belonged to a village. Once, during the marriage season,
he burnt down the entire village while manufacturing his stuff. Had he not run away from
that village during the hubbub of the conflagration, there is no doubt that he would have
been thrown alive into the flames he had caused.
Then Lingoji set up in a distant
place. When he did not manufacture stuff for sale, he spent his time in
"research". He was a true scientist. His kids assisted him even in his
investigations. They knew his chemicals only as the "yellow powder", the
"white powder", the "white powder in the pot", the "rough
grains", "red powder" and so on. For security reasons, he never told his
children more than this.
True science demands huge
sacrifices and I am happy to say that Lingoji was no exception. His daughter lost a leg
and his second son, a hand. And then one day, Lingoji came upon his youngest child
gleefully crawl towards a ball-like thing out of which sparks were coming. Before he could
prevent it, the child caught hold of it and before he could think of what to do, there was
a terrific explosion. Since then, Lingoji's wife went dumb. After that, everyone thought
that Lingoji would never touch his yellow and red powders again. But they were mistaken.
Lingoji was a real "hero".
I had a discussion with Lingoji as
to the heights achieved by his rockets. "What do you think, good sir?" Lingoji
"I should think they go to
the height of a furlong", I replied, hoping to flatter him.
Lingoji went speechless. Then rallied and said, "Miles, my good sir, miles!"
"They do not appear to go so
far, do they?" I asked.
"Ah, you are assuming that
the rockets stop rising further the moment you stop seeing them" he said laughing
I confessed that I did commit such
"Look, sir. Come with me
outside the village and you'll see something" Lingoji suggested.
That night both of us went towards
the boat-canal. Lingoji was carrying something wrapped up. He unwrapped it and I could see
a rocket with two "heads", connected with a fuse. He fired the lower head. The
rocket rose into the sky slowly at first and soon picked up speed. In the sky I saw the
second head burst into flames.
Dusting his hands against each
other Lingoji said, " Let me tell you the people in Visakhapatnam can see it. Now
it's gone. It will never come back."
"You don't mean that it will
reach the moon?" I asked him incredulously. You see, this was long before sputniks
and I knew nothing about earth satellites.
"No, no!" Lingoji said
modestly. "It hasn't enough force to reach the moon. It will go beyond air and keeps
wandering in the sky this way and that." Evidently he did not know that it could go
round the earth.
Then came sputniks and I contacted
"Don't tell me about these
sputniks," he said with contempt, "we put sputniks in the sky long ago, my good
sir, and you know it. Now here is the rocket that can reach the moon." Then he showed
me a rocket with seven "heads". He also showed me the weight he had attached to
the bottom of the long stick so that the rocket will not turn upside down because of the
weight of the heads. He told me how he made the lowest "head" very big so that
it could lift the weight. He also told me something about this head being the centre of
gravity of the whole missile.
We fired the rocket that night. I
saw three of the heads burst into flames one after the other. But presumably the other
heads too burst though I could not see them.
I am not biased. I do not want to
assert that "the Dragon" (the name given to the seven-headed rocket by its
maker) reached the moon, nor that it did not fall into some well or hill, sea or bush. I
do not even assert that it is going round as a satellite of the earth. What I do want to
assert is that Lingoji was certainly the first person to aim to hit the moon and it is
good that the fact is recognised by Americans as well as others.
Hundreds of workers waited on the
platform to welcome the Labour Leader.
As soon as the train was in right
up went a shout, "Hail the Labour Leader!" and the railway station echoed with
When the Leader's face appeared at
the window the workers were so excited they hailed him until they were hoarse.
The Leader was looking out a first
class window, his eyes searching for newspaper reporters.
As he got out of the train he was
surrounded by a large crowd and representatives of fifteen unions garlanded him one after
The press cameras flashed and the
reporters pushed themselves forward.
"What shall I speak to you
about?" the Labour Leader asked them.
"The napkin manufacturers
have refused bonus to the workers in defiance of the decision of the arbitration
committee. Would you advise the workers to go on a strike?" one of the reporters
"This is a very complex
problem", said the Leader. "I hold that strike should not be resorted to until
all peaceful methods of negotiation have been tried. If we violate Gandhiji's principles
of Truth and Non-violence, we shall be condemning the labour movement to death."
"What in your opinion is the
international part played by Russia at present?" another reporter asked him.
"The Third World War",
said the Leader, "which America was afraid of starting, has been started by Russia in
Korea on June 25th. Everyone has read the news in the papers but no one seems
to realise this fact."
"Is Russia alone behind
Korea, or is China too behind it?"
"In future the entire world
will become Russian and Chinese empires. Once these empires come into being, the people
can not liquidate them. So we should take all precautions to prevent them from coming into
"The same thing was said
"Bolshevism is much worse
"Is it not Marxist Communism
that exists in Russia and China?"
"I've lost faith in Marxism
after knowing Gandhism. Yet I must say that communism as defined by Marx exists to a
slight extent in Britain and to a much greater extent in America."
"Coming to the problem of the
napkin workers, what will you do if they insist upon a strike?"
"I shall try my best to
dissuade them. But if they are adamant, I shall lead the strike."
* * *
Soon after the press conference
the Labour Leader got into a fifty thousand rupee car which was waiting for him and went
to the house of a multimillionaire where he was to lodge.
The Worker's representatives met
him there and explained how their bosses swindled them regarding the bonus and described
to him their miserable situation. The Leader heard them patiently, wiped his tears and
told them in a choked voice, "We shall ask for the bonus. Let us see how and why they
refuse it. Don't you worry. I am here to look after your legitimate rights. I shall send
word to the bosses today. After they meet me here and talk things over with me, everything
will turn out alright.
The workers could see that the
Labour Leader had great influence over the rich class as was evident from the palatial
building in which he lodged. They went away satisfied.
The evening papers published the
Labour Leader's statement and his photo "Napkin workers should not strike. Labour
Leader's Advice", said a paper. "Bolshevism more frightful than fascism.
Revelation by Labour Leader", said another. "Gandhism superior to Marxism.
Assertion by Labour Leader", said a third.
That night, two men came to see
the Labour Leader. They were representatives of the Napkin manufacturers. Secret talks
were held on the top floor.
"What about the strike?"
the representatives of the bosses asked the Labour Leader.
"I don't like it, " said
the Labour Leader. "Haven't you seen my statement in the evening papers?"
"Ah, thats a
pose!" said the representatives. "You are a Labour Leader. It is your business
to conduct strikes." They appeared dejected.
"You need not remind me of
it. I am afraid that things are not favourable for a strike."
"There are workers who are
against a strike"
"But the workers are in a
frightful state as they did not receive their bonus, poor fellows!" said the bosses'
"Besides, the napkin workers'
union has not enough funds to go through with a strike," said the Labour Leader.
"That is not a serious
"If that was the only reason
I would not have worried. If I lead the workers I can even manage a general strike. But
considering all these things I decided against a strike and told the workers as much this
"But is necessary that they
should go on strike" said the representative of the bosses.
"Why is it so?"
There were bales and bales of
napkins lying in the godowns. The unreasonable government would not allow the mills to be
closed. The price of napkins was at its lowest. International unrest hit the export of
napkins very badly. The bosses were paying the workers with their lifeblood, as it were.
Gandhiji had said that manufacturers were guardians of the working class. But the bosses
were in a terrible plight. Let there be a strike for a couple of months and the bosses
would breathe more freely.
"Two months?" exclaimed
the Labour Leader. "How are the workers to carry on for two months? They may stand a
month's strike. How to keep up their spirits longer than that?"
"That is your job. Have
public meetings and the Government is bound to promulgate Section 144 (prohibiting public
assemblies). And there are the police."
"Supposing the papers let out
that the strike benefits the bosses?"
"We shall look after the
"How about expenses?"
Out came the chequebook. A cheque
changed hands with a large figure on it. "How about the party fund?" asked the
Labour Leader as he pocketed the cheque nonchalantly.
Another cheque changed hands.
"My personal expenses?"
A wad of notes was handed over to
The faces of the visitors
blossomed bright. They praised the Leader for his deep patriotism, admired his competence
There was a meeting in the office
of the Napkin Workers' Union. There were only the important leaders of the union present.
The Labour Leader told them, "I talked to the bosses. They will not give bonus for
the mere asking. Even Sait Makhichoos, that is my host, spoke to them at length. The
bosses openly say that the workers are not in a position to strike, nor do they have the
unity to do so. I am afraid it is time that the bosses are given an idea about the
strength of the workers. But it is up to you to decide upon the strike. I am here only to
carry out your decision."
"If the bosses are determined
to rob us of the bonus, there will be strike," said the union leaders.
"Let me warn you right now.
If I lead a strike, it must not fizzle out. I must see it right through to the end. You
are responsible for the morale and unity of the workers. You must make them stand up to
the strain of police lathis and so on. This is a big thing. It will be written in golden
letters in the history of Labour. I expect the strike to last a minimum of three months
and you should be prepared for it."
The union leaders showed spirit.
"Our union is game for it," they said, "but will you promise that the
unions under your leadership will carry out sympathetic strikes?"
"Leave that to me"
"Some of the napkin workers
belong to our rival union. They help to break the strike."
"They are only a few",
said the Labour Leader. "In any case they are bound to come in as soon as we call for
a general strike."
The strike began the day after the
workers got their pay. The second day of the strike the number of strikes went up three
times. On the fourth day of the strike most of the napkin workers were idle. There were
sympathetic strikes all over the city. The papers played up the strike prominently. There
were figures regarding the fall in the manufacture of napkins per each day and the
corresponding loss to the owners in thousands of rupees.
As long as the workers were
peaceful nothing happened but once the workers showed signs of unrest and indulged in
destructive activities, Section 144 was promulgated. But the Labour Leader was not
The strike lasted twenty days and
the papers were giving out the losses of the factories in lakhs of rupees. Yet the bosses
did not seek to come to terms and this puzzled the workers.
On pretext of hooliganism of the
workers, government unleashed the police. There were firings. Some of the striking
labourers were killed.
"Through this, the strike
gains strength" declared the Labour Leader.
* * *
The napkin manufacturers had every
reason to be satisfied. The strike had saved them hundreds of thousands of rupees of wages
for the labourers. The price of napkins went up and a good lot of the stock in the godowns
Representatives of the
manufacturers and workers met the Labour Leader in the palace of Sait Makhichoos.
"for heaven's sake,"
said the bosses to the Labour Leader imploringly, "drop this strike. We will let the
workers come back to work. We are not in a position to give the bonus recommended by the
arbitration committee but we are still ready to give the month's wages, which we promised
to pay. We are not capable to bring back the dead, but we can represent to the government
that those of the workers who have been sent to jail should be acquitted."
"What about our pay during
the strike period?" the workers' deputies asked.
"That is beyond us."
The workers' deputies looked at
the Labour Leader.
"In the light of the present
international situation," said the Labour Leader, "I feel it is unwise to go on
with the strike any longer. The workers suffered a lot. But then so did the manufacturers
to a colossal degree. The strike has been successful and the bosses have come to terms.
The workers should be satisfied with their moral victory. It is against the tenets of
Ahimsa (non-violence) to take material advantage of those who have been defeated."
The workers' deputies looked at
one another and agreed to abide by the decision of the Labour Leader. "A correct and
Timely Advice", said the papers, boosting the Labour Leader for his able handling of
the labour problem.
Two or three days later, the
papers reported that the Labour Leader had moved to another city, but there was no news
that the workers gave him a warm send-off.
By Kodavatiganti Kutumba Rao
I tried to argue with Suri, that
childhood is the best part of ones life. He did not pick up the issue, but gave me
some papers and said "Read this first and then I will answer your queries". The
essay ran as follows.
childhood. They recall those good old days and happiness with a sigh. Christ said theirs
is the heaven. Gay said ignorance is bliss.
Memories of my childhood, the
inadequate knowledge I had those days, make me feel miserable now. I now realise, that
knowledge is painful. I would pray to God for a life without childhood.
There is no point in finding fault
with the world for its wrong ideas. A patient in mortal pain asks for chloroform for
relief. A labourer who toiled through the day makes his way to the local bar to relieve
himself of pain. The world finds truth painful and so takes solace in ignorance.
Ignorance and lies are the most
popular things on earth. Little kids are taught "obedience" by their elders.
"Mummy! Grandpa reeks of
snuff," exclaims a little boy. Mother says "You naughty boy! Is that the way to
talk about elders?" A smart boy escapes his mothers rebuke by keeping such
things to himself, but never forgets the fact that his grandpa smells bad. A not-so-smart
boy believes that it was wrong to say such thing, repents for having said it and tries to
convince himself that grandpa doesnt smell bad. Naturally the former is branded as a
" naughty boy" and the latter, a "good boy".
However good a boy is, he cannot
know on his own, that he should respectfully greet his teacher whenever he meets him or
her. How can he know, unless someone tells him, that being asked to stand upon the bench
in the class is punishment? When I went to high school an amusing incident took place on
the very first day. All the students stood up when the teacher entered. I was slow on the
uptake and tried to pull the boy next to me to make him sit down. He stood up immediately
and complained to the teacher about me. The teacher got angry that I did not show respect
like the others and asked me to stand up on the bench. I was thrilled to stand up on the
For many days after that I was
never convinced that standing on the bench was a greater punishment than standing on the
floor! How can I feel proud of my childhood? Just as a river flows between its banks, the
childs attitude is restrained by that of its parents. (Sometimes the river overflows
and breaches the banks and so does the attitude of a child). The bond between the mother
and the child is stronger. The river flow follows the bends and the curves of the inner
bank. The child picks up all the faults of the mother. Our institutions of marriage and
law keep our women in slavery. The social hierarchy and the family structure make women
cowards. Our religion and scriptures equate our women with animals. In this scenario
mothers are not fit to spend even an hour with their children, forget about bringing them
Though I have my fathers
attitude to a great extent, I also have a slight dislike towards him and love towards my
mother. In my love towards my mother, there could be an element of natural attraction of a
man to a woman. But mainly, her opinions and her ignorance meant a line of least
resistance in my life. A kid has to put in certain amount of effort to learn anything. It
is easier to stagnate and procrastinate. This natural inertia encouraged me into idleness.
I felt that approaching my father was like approaching the fire. He was like blinding
light. And my mother was like blinding darkness. When both have the same effect why bother
to approach the light? Nobody told me that light would give me benefits which darkness
cannot line of least resistance
Even when I was a five-year-old
boy my mother treated me like a two-year-old. My father treated me like a grown up. He
would criticise her. "Why do you make a sissy out of him?" He seemed ignorant of
everything. "Why do you treat him like a baby?"
"Oh! He is a little boy. What
can he know of anything?" my mother would say. And they would continue to argue. What
my father said is true. If we stop treating a five-year-old kid like a milksop, he can
easily learn to behave properly and go about without bothering others at home. At the age
of ten, I did not know how to fill my bath. I could not eat my meal on my own. My father
disliked a kid who said, "Dad I need a pencil, what should I do?" My mother
firmly believed that children should never touch money and children who asked for money
were "bad kids".
There was always a certain amount
of responsibility involved in behaving in accordance with my father's wishes and I
My parents had other differences
of opinion too. My father felt that I should be given freedom in my movements and
behaviour and that it would be impossible to protect a child all the time. My mother found
such ideas incredible. She would argue "Can you look on impassively even when he is
playing with fire?"
"Let him take care of his
protection to some extent. Mental handicap is far worse than physical handicap," said
my father. He has this tendency to exaggerate during arguments. I feel that you can
protect your child from both mental and physical damage, without hovering and fussing over
In any case, my mothers
hovering and fussing over me fetched very few good results. She was famous for her feeding
habits. Everyday she would prepare my favourite dishes. When I struggled to finish the
meal on my plate, she would say " my poor baby! You dont know your own hunger.
Do you know what happens when you dont eat properly? When you sleep your soul goes
to eat in the pots of the low caste people and they would close the pot with a lid."
To save my soul from such a sin I had to wipe the meal plate clean. Every week I would
fall sick and my mother would pray to God for my health, with pledges to God for my
In all other issues, she would
behave as a safe keeper for my life. I was not allowed to peep into the well and shout
"BOOM". I was not allowed to look out of the window in the train and inhale the
smoke. I was not allowed to go the railway station, count the compartments of the goods
train, wait till they light the gaslight and come home after it is dark! When my mother
protected me like that, my father said "Your over protection is ruining him. You are
making him an orphan. He is scared of going out, even when there is moonlight!" My
mother would feel enraged.
" How can you call him an
orphan, when we both are alive to look after him?"
" Not having anyone to look
after does not make one an orphan. Not being able to live, unless someone looks after him,
makes one an orphan" he said. She did not understand his words, not being a very
"In any case you look after
him as long as he is well. Once he is even mildly sick you run to God with all your
bribes" he taunted.
" Oh! Won't you have pity
even when he is dying" lamented my mother.
My father continued his taunting,
" Now that is mothers love. Just for an indigestion, she thinks he is going to
At this point I would like to say
a few words about infant mortality. With our ignorance about children, any child below the
age of 2-3 years is likely to die any moment! Whenever any child dies, mother cries,"
Oh! My child, I never imagined that you would go so early!" We pay very dearly, if we
are not mentally prepared for our near one's death. Every time a death occurs, temporarily
we become detached from life, but never think of the inevitability and purpose of death.
Nobody ever thinks, how can death be evil, if it happens to everyone. There is no way to
prove that people who die are reborn. For convenience sake, let us assume, it is true.
Some one asked a saint, if we are reborn, why dont we remember details of our
previous life? The saint replied, when we cant recall events that took place a few
years back, is it incredible that we cant recall events of a previous life? In any
case, I feel it is better to forget the past. If we can recall the previous life, there is
no difference between sleep and death. I accept that life is a journey, but I dont
agree with the philosophy that preaches detachment in life. One need not be detached from
wife and children to find happiness. They are ones co-travellers in life. One needs
to give them up only when one feels that they are not capable of travelling with oneself.
The main problem with our philosophy is that it is not understood by people for whom it is
meant. A man becomes unfit for travelling through life after a few years. At that time
death occurs. But if death occurs very frequently, life is forever stumbling. What the
doctors should find out is, with one physical body, how long can we travel through life?
Bernard Shaw said that three hundred years is the desired span of life. If there is a way
to forget yesterdays trouble today, a man is reborn after every sleep. If there is a
way to solve problems on a day-to-day basis, we can use every sleep as death that gives a
Any way, what I liked in my
mothers attitude was irresponsibility. Hiding the truth, ignoring facts, lack of
self confidence, considering all others better than myself, feelings of jealousy towards
people who do things which I could not, thinking that people who speak truth are cruel,
since truth hurts me, are only part of my character.
I always liked to play with girls.
My father was quite old fashioned in such ideas. He would say "Why is that idiot
always playing with girls? He will become shy and timid like girls!" I am well aware
of the problems that arise due to partitioning girls and boys into separate compartments
from childhood. But still, there is an element of truth in what he said.
Then, my education became a
problem. My father argued that everything was to be learnt and nothing could be taught. My
mother argued back, saying, how can a child learn without anybodys help? They never
understood each others language. My mother won this round. They put me in the local
As my father predicted, I learnt
in two years, what could be learnt in two or three months. Then I was put in a bigger
school. At that time, my father again commented that it was a waste of time. My mother
asked, with sarcasm, "Do you want him to be ruined without proper education? "
"You call this education? Let
him follow me and I can make him self reliant and earn up to two hundred rupees per
"Can you tell me what you
will teach him?"
"Anything! Carpentry, music,
acting! He can easily earn ten rupees per day. Anyway, what do you understand such things?
She returned the ridicule "
Of course I can understand. You want him to run around drama companies, get into liquor
and girl friends and other such things."
My father stroked his moustache,
and said absently, "I acted in dramas for nearly two years."
My mother won this round too. I
joined high school. The world around me suddenly changed. I grew up beyond my
mothers comprehension, when I started to learn English. All around me were new
teachers, new ideas, and new friends! To adapt to this new environment, I shed part of my
old character. There was a world of difference between obeying my mother and obeying the
unwritten laws of this society. Cutting my hair, wearing pressed clothes, going out with
friends to plays, movies and hotels were few of the habits I acquired. I knew not all of
it was sinful. What could my mother understand? Why couldnt she realise I was no
longer tied to her apron strings? Why did I have to pretend to obey her? I felt proud of
the fact that my knowledge was improving by day. I started aping the western culture.
When I was about to appear for my
B.A. exams, my father passed away. I felt like a fellow who was sleeping in hell, dreaming
about heaven and woke up to reality suddenly. What had my education, tea parties, my
arrogance given me? All I learnt at school was a waste. I learnt about English culture,
fashion but what about the money to afford that culture? I remembered a conversation with
I had asked him money to go to a
play. He gave me the money and said "This month your expenditure is already fifteen
My mother interjected saying
" Oh, why are you bothering him with such details? "
He replied patiently " He has
to know how difficult it is to earn money."
I wish he were my mother. He would
have been better than all the books on child rearing!
I finished reading the piece and
said " perhaps you should have written a straight essay on child rearing." He
said, "I always notice that you are dissatisfied with whatever I say or write. I
I didnt answer but he was
right. When he talks about something, he beats around the bush without explaining his
point. He continued "Perhaps, you want me to be explicit. If I start talking about a
cow, you expect me to give you statistics about its ears, eyes etc. Am I right?"
"Yes, but you never do it!" I complained.
"Why should I? I would rather
tell you how to think than tell you what to think about an issue. It is not books on child
rearing hat we need, which anyway people dont read, but good mothers. Every woman
should be trained and groomed into an excellent mother."
"By the way, what do you
intend to do with these papers?"
"Why do you ask?"
"Give them to me. I shall send it for publication."
He snatched the papers from me,
before I completed my sentence.
"I would rather burn them!"
I realised his reason. A few days ago, I liked a particular essay in a popular magazine
and tried to read it aloud for him. As soon as I started with "Unite, the brave
brothers of Andhra!" he got up to beat me up.
I am sure he will kill me, if he
comes across all this I am writing about him!!!
(Translated by B. Sharada)