Monday, February 16, 2015


Mera naam zara hai. Kuch log mujhe zara sheikh bulate hai, kuch zara shrivastav ke naam se jaante hai. Ab mujhe bistar par karvat badalte huye 15 minut ho chuke hai. Uthkar bahar jaane ka bilkul mann nahi. Saath soye mere pati sunil ko kuch nahi pata. Usse batana chaahti hoon par kya kahoon aur kaise? Dus mahine pehle jab humne shaadi karne ki sochi thi tab hum dono jaante the ke hamare mazhab alag hai, hum mazhabi ho ya na ho, alag to hai Mere ammi abbu hai aur sunil ke ma babuji. Par issse kya farak padhta hai? Hai progressive insaan hai, dono iss zameen par 30 saal se zyaada tey kar chuke hai, main ad agency mein hoon, sunil MNC mein. Humme in sab cheezon se kuch vaasta nahi Laga tha court marriage aur reception ke dauran kuch dikkat ho gi, par aisa kuch nahi huya. Shayaad ishq ka jazbaa itna chhaya huya tha ke aur kuch dikhna hi nahi tha. Ab bhi kuch badla nahi hai, mujhe kabhi kabhi sindoor lagana achcha lagta hai aur sunil ko eid ke eid kurta pyjama pehnna gavara hai Ab pichle ek hafte se ma babuji hamare paas aaye huye hai. Do hafte ki chuttiyan hai isliye. Hamari shaadi ke baad pehli baar. Mujh se zyaada tension sunil ko thi. Paar main to khush thi…hoon. Saath rehne se to hi jaan sakte hain ek doosre ko. Aur maine decide kar liya tha ke agar ma ne kuch keh diya to bhi koi baat nahi, iss umr mein vo kahan badlengi aur phir do hafton ki ho to baat hai Lekin ab bura lag raha hai, chhoti chhoti baton pe. Aur gussa apne aap pe aa raha tha. Kya samajh ke maine ammi ko kaha tha ke unhe dinner pe bula lo. Kaise vo mussalman ke ghar kha sakte? Chahe khana shudh shakahari kyun na ho. End mein vegetarian restaurant gaaye aur bahut hi painful shaam thi. Jab babuji ne poocha beta sunil ghar mein bhagwanji nahi hai, to ma ne mujhe kyun ghur ke dekha? Jab raat coffee peete huye unhone ne poocha bachche kiss mazhab ke honge to sunil ne bina meri taraf dekhe bhi keh diya: yeh kaisa sawaal hai, hindu honge obviously. Jab sab ke minnat karne pe babuji ne chhaunk wale aloo bannane ke liye hami bhari, sabziyon ke saath vo bazaar se nayi kadai bhi lekar kyun aaye. Kya vo nahi jaante ke humare barton mein, mujh se zyaada, unka beta hi non veg banata hai? Agar mujhe kisine bataya nahi to main har subah suryanamaskar kaise karti? Par in sab baton se zyaada mujhe koft iss baat se hai ke main kissi aur ke kehne par apna self confidence kyun kho rahi hoon…

The Hourglass

Much as he denied it, Jatin loved it when 3 people rushed to his car as soon as he screeched in outside his glass and chrome office. Someone to open the door and then park the car, someone to carry his stuff, one guy who would get his well ironed suit that was on the hanger in the back seat. From here on it was a “regular” day at work for Jatin. The amount of people he acknowledged walking the short distance to his cabin was crazy. His steaming hot black coffee and a fresh pack of cigarettes on his table made him glad again for stella, his ever efficient pa. stella who wore only shades of cream and white since boss did not approve of her wearing colours. She was on the team of the CEO, she could not dress like the loud kind who traveled by local train. Meetings began as soon as he stepped in. people outside who could see him flaying his arms and gesticulating wildly would try and put words to the act, depending on who was at the receiving end. Jatin could have the marketing head in front of him and tell him that dattaram, the office boy, did not like the colour scheme so there was no room for discussion. A very valid point but the way jatin put it made anyone seem like a worm. Jatin was good for the business, in fact he was great. Profits had gone up 43% in the last year. Investors were ecstatic. The buzz in the market was great, he had made it to the cover of the top notch business magazine and life was good. Post a grueling session with foreign investors came the tv interview and then stella walked in to discuss his travel schedule for the next 3 days. Tonight he had the business awards to attend. Tomorrow post the board meeting he had to be in Bangalore for the fashion show. Friday evening was dubai for a film premiere and the next afternoon was the polo match in delhi. Stella informed him that he could not attend that since sat was anushka’s birthday. She had booked them a table at zodiac grill. Now jatin was irritated, why did his wife have to schedule her birthday on the day of the all important polo match. The MD wanted him to hob nob with the delhi politicos and this was the perfect opportunity. On the way back to the suburbs where he was going to attend the business awards, jatin thought about the farce of a marriage they had. Anushka refused to be the trophy wife and so he refused to believe she exsisted. He never asked about the work she did, he vaguely knew she helped at some NGO and she scorned at his work and lifestyle. Well that did not stop her from using the car and driver he had kept at her disposal or from maxing out the add on credit card each month. They had separate bedrooms for ages now. Jatin, anyway didn’t like women who spoke when he was horny. Wild sex as opposed to making love was what he wanted…and got. He never ever paid for it though, for some women, unlike his wife, it was a high to be screwed by such a powerful man. The only times, the two of them were forced to eat together was when his mom or his sister and his kids were over from delhi. He took lesser calls during dinner those evenings and with the kids he really had fun. Those are perhaps the only times that he wished he had a more understanding wife so they could have babies. During interviews when people asked him about his hobbies he rattled them off with ease. Golf, drag racing, power boxing, reading, movies and cooking. The reality was that he did none of this. Other than working out at his personal gym every morning and reading at night, reading mails and files on what the spies had dug out on competition. He enjoyed this madness and would not trade it for anything, 4 hours of sleep and 50 cigarettes a day worked just fine for him. He did not have friends since he did not trust people and friends from his delhi days were people he was now ashamed of. Slow down beta was the only thing his simple docile mother would say during the perfunctory weekly call he made. That is what his doc had also said the last time he saw him, which was about 2 years ago. A sudden shooting pain as he was climbing down the stairs and his legs giving way was scary. He was rushed to the ICU. When he got conscious he saw his office gang looking very serious and somber, he also saw his mom and anushka. Having been with her for the last twenty years he just saw the look on her face and knew it was all over….