June 1, 2023


Connecting Asian writers with global readers

Short Story: Saga of a Shishya by Goutham Vidya

2 min read

In this short story, Goutham Vidya captures the bond of a Guru and a Shishya giving us a close glimpse of how knowledge and learning can have different meanings for different people.

 The cool air of the early morning is deceptive; the sun can hardly be seen. Before sunrise the birds begin to wake up and as they do, they’re already whooping it up with their melodies. Slowly their songs blend with a gat “Pyari Pyari Ankhiyaan Raadhe Ki Mana…”  in Pandit Sangath Har Malham’s voice. He is one of the disciples of Manjun Har Malham, who founded the Dadri Gharana, a distinctive music style in Hindustani Music between 1870 – 1943. The Dadri Gharana, got its name from a place called Dadri in Haryana. Pandit Sangath Har Malham, being quite short and plump and his head with baldness touching the back of his head where long curly white hairs brushed his collars. This tradition of music passed down only among their family members and no one outside was considered. But as generations passed it became difficult to take this tradition forward and Sangath Har Malham, the current head of Dadri Gharana was forced to take someone from outside to make sure that the age-old tradition doesn’t end with him. That someone from outside was Surbhav Singh, a svelte figure with scraggly facial hair. Born in Patiala and having a small and distant propinquity with the Patiala Gharana was the reason behind him being the chosen one. Surbhav had moved to Sangath Malham’s home 18 years ago to ensure the integrity of the musical transfer. He always wore a green turban while singing and always stuck to it. It was something he didn’t want to find an excuse for not doing. For all those years, Surbhav completely immersed himself into this music tradition day and night. Nothing disturbed him as he was completely aware of the importance of why he was chosen. 

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