The Sun is dawning casually, people are getting home to be shielded. The shops are winding up earlier as they used to be open late evening. It is prohibited congregation in a group. A blurred cloud covers everyone’s face as the evening arrive, a part of happiness die out and everybody tries to be lull by keeping a possibility fearful in their mind till the next morning arrives.
Like every day, He is back from the field before dark, puts his agricultural tools in a corner of the house and seats on a berhni (a thick round mattress made of hay). A middle-aged, almost 47, stocky and broad shoulder with a short moustache and thick beard, is with old yellow t-shirt and sorts. A small towel is hanging over his shoulder, as it’s his regular. He scratches his beard and forwards his eyes towards the roof, a Tharu house, thatched roof, walls are made of thick straw and plastered by clay mud. Tharu women arts are displaying on the wall,… In the corner of the house, chickens are hanging in a basket and so many things. In another room, Ghost God (mud horse) is silently be displaying. The rooms are separated from the Deheri (granary storage made of mud ). Next, to the Ghost God, his wife is busy in cooking dinner in the kitchen He heard the sound ha..ha..coming from outside the house, ( this sound used to control the buffalo or cows), It was his father almost 86 in age but strong and tie up the cows in the cowshed. He becomes fresh by washing his face, hand, and legs and sits nearby his son. In the meantime his son, Ramcharan arrives with his wife from the field. Even they are back from the field, used to be busy in household work.
While he was rounding his eyes, finds a chicken feather in the roof, picked it and cleans it, and feels cool using it in his ear. Chawa…re……Chawa ( son…oh…son), he calls. Kaa baba ( yes father), Ramcharan replies and comes. Bring me a pot of water chawa, Ramcharan brings a pot of water and gives him. He drinks water pouring in the mouth, it gives a sound of drinking water and takes a long silent breath. His father is sitting with a big bowl of Jaand ( rice beer) and stale vegetable in sal leaves the bowl. His wife passes beside them and goes to the hand pump and washes her hand. After a few minutes, she comes back with green garlic leaves and green chilli, Ya, it’s getting dark, leaving a word, she entered into the kitchen again. Dhak …Dhak.. sound could be heard in the kitchen, grinding a chutney. Now the dark covers the whole village. He stands up, stretches his body and closes the door. A locally made kerosene lamp in a small bottle, flammable rugs on the top of the lid, giving light inside the house.
It’s dark, and the whole village is quiet as seems there is an order from an evil, seems like a graveyard. Somewhere far, could be heard dogs barking but also stops in a minute. Insects are giving natural sounds continuously, a small blow of wind makes to feel the sound of lingering leaves and dropping on the ground.
The village is totally silent as it used to enjoy seasonal culture, dance. People stopped to gathering and sharing their happiness and sorrows after their hard work life, the way they used to share by drinking and dancing. It’s very hard to smell the freedom, peace in the villages, everything has been changed, even hard to hear a cacophony. In one way, it looks like a dreadful peace night, if it does not mistake.
Patoiea.Patoiea,….(son’s wife), a voice comes from the kitchen. Kaa Mau ( Yes mother-in-law). Pass these foods to them. Patoiea serves the food to all the family member. After dinner, all of them go to sleep.
It is one hour to be midnight. This site, at Ranashur Gulm ( army camp), almost 16 or 17 soldiers are preparing to head somewhere. Except for commanding officer, everyone is surprised, and chat with the roommate, they are unknown about the destination. They do not flow the detailed information before they enrol and head to the targeted area. A whistle gives a sign, and within five minutes a group of soldiers enrolled on the ground, everyone is standing with the weapon. The second lieutenant arrives and says, are you all ready? Yes, sir! Any questions, No Sir! Now all of them are noticed that where they are going. Ok, Let’s move, said the second commander, called Hawaldar in the army ranking. They moved in a line in the direction of the commander. Soldiers walked silently, they speak in a very low voice with each other. They reached in a targetted destination after walking for almost ten minutes, but Hawaldar signals them to stop before fifty meters. Except five of them, rest of shoulders are divided into five groups and takes a position, circling the house in commander order. Lieutenant, Hawaldar and three of soldiers are standing in front of the home nearby the door. In a cowshed, an ox is heating its horn in a pole. They whisper and make a plan. But the house is in deep sleep, Everyone is in a beautiful comfortable sleep. within the minute it demolishes.
Hawaldar knocks the door, Tak..tak.. with the calm voice, anybody at home, please open the door. Ke huitha atrajunke ( who is this at this time?), someone gives a voice from inside the home. We, …we are, villagers, please open the door, it’s emergency. some rats moving on the roof of the home. His wife wakes up, talks herself, who can beat this midnight and gives light to a lamp. A small bright covers a part of the house. Light and movements make to wake to Ramcharan, Kaa huiel daai ( what happened mum?), Ramcharan asked. Don’t know, someone is calling from outside. Holding a lamp in her hand, are you going to open the door? she asked her husband (Mr Top). I will go, wait, and takes a lamp. He is still in the same dress, old yellow t-shirt, and sorts, a small towel is resting on the pillow. Hairs are randomized, holding a lamp, he wipes his eyes and goes to open the door. He opens the door, very dark outside, four of them soldiers are hiding, and a lieutenant is standing now. He could see a single man standing, but could not notice that a man is a soldier, even he can’t identify soldier’s uniform in the dark night, the lamp could not help him by reaching the ray to the soldier. He calls him inside the house and asked him to sit. Now, he lost all his conscious, feels that he fell down from the roof, he is muzzy now when see’s a soldier in his home. Are you Mr Top? Yes, I am. We have a record that you are a Maoist, and we are here to arrest you. He tries to speak, but his tremble voice could not help him to clear it. In the meantime, his wife arrives. Hawaldar arrest him ! lieutenant ordered. He is in a circle of weaponed soldiers, the hole of the guns are pointed at him, Hawaldar ties his hand, his wife cries, a request to them, all of the family now awake, there is big humour, everyone is crying, but did not work. Finally, they take him. A family member comes up to the road but no profit. Top stopped his step for a moment. What happened? Hawaldar said. Top did not speak. Chawa, he calls his son. Ramcharan comes, Fetch my small towel. Ramcharan brings it and gives him. Chawa, take care and look after the family, don’t know, I would be able to be back or not, drop a tear, said Top. But he got pushed, ok, move, no time to talk. Villages could hear the humour but could not do anything more him, whoever try, would be in the same condition as Top, everybody whispers inside the home only. After walking a distance, as they were passing the V.D.C. chairman house, he shouted with tremble loud voice, Chairman save me…. Chairman save me…..they will kill me, Chairman…then sounds disappears. Chairman identifies the voice and peers through the window but could not see anything. He lights a cigarette and tries to peer again, but nothing else than dark. He could not sleep the whole night and talks with his wife. is a Mr Top, he is arrested and is not sure, either they release him, such a critical situation is running at this time in our country. Even he could not go to visit his family right the moment, goes for the urinal at water closet, does up and down in the home. The top is taken inside the shoulder camp and he is put in a tiny, not clean room, no mattress could not see anything outside except wall, a small unreachable hole, on the top, is able to bring external fresh air. He is narrowed now.
He has no choice just being alone in a cage room. To meet the family or relatives, friends are out of dream till the situation becomes cool if he is lucky to be alive. On the other side, the Chairman is waiting for the morning. As the morning arrives, the Chairman goes to meet his friend to talk about releasing him. But it was a bit risky and dangerous to talk with army camp about him, and are failure themselves, and reach a conclusion to inform to Human rights. The army camp is in heavy security, sharpen wires are all over the fence, somewhere cameras are trapped in trees.
Human rights are supposed to protect the rights of the public, but self-locking for their own rights, to be safe either from the government or Maoist communist. They are somehow able to release some people but normally collecting the name of missing people. Top Bahadur is placed on the same list.
None of the family members could see or visit him and are hopeless to get him back again, now Top is in the memory of family minds. Human rights are unable to release him. The family is unknown about him, that how he is? A long time was gone, and are still waiting if he comes back. But He never Back.