This short story by Pragya Ranjan is a stark reminder for us in today’s times when women continue to be blamed for everything and anything.
As soon as the bright and yellow sunshine hit the veranda of the house, I knew it was time to open the door. Even there are a few hours left before I finish my breakfast and go out with friends to play; I can at least see the busy road full of people hustling around- chatting, gossiping, laughing, buying flowers- in the early morning.
Oh, Baba finally woke up! Thank God, this isn’t one of those days when Baba comes drunk at night and doesn’t wake up till the sun is at its zenith. On those days I don’t get to play outside, Maa doesn’t go to mandi where she gossips with her friends, and the door remains shut till Baba wakes up and opens it himself. But today is not that day, and Baba is in a good mood.
“Leela, come here,” he says. I went. “ It’s been a while since I gave you money. Let’s see what I have got for you” He puts his hand into his tin box – where he keeps some of his savings- and comes out with a 20 rupee note. “Buy anything that you please with this.” I took the note and went out to sit on the chatai beside the kitchen for breakfast.