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First Act



(Bhawani is aged 22. Husband Shambhunath is 30. Daughter Senehi is 3 years old. It is nine in the morning. The inner room. Bhawani is lying down on the bed. Shambhu stands nearby.)


Shambhu: But won’t you get up today? Its nine already. Time for me to go to Court. But I see no provisions for breakfast?


(ooh! aah! Bhawani groans.) What happened? Why do you groan?


(Bhawani groans further) Why don’t you say anything? what’s happened?


Bhawani: What has happened, nothing. Who takes a note if I live or die? Everyone’s concerned simply with eating...eating. ooh! Oh Father! aah--!


Shambhu: What? Is it fever? Let me see.


(Shambhu sits on the bed beside Bhawani and puts a hand on her waist.)


Bhawani: only this was left ooh!aah! ow my!


(Senehi enters)


Senehi: aai1…o aai, I’m hungly, gib me tum pood.


(She gets onto the bed and climbs over her mother)


Bhawani: Oh!Oh! Have you come to eat my head as well? Have this--eat—eat my head. The poor woman lies in pain, not able to move even an inch. And here comes everyone bawling over food.


Shambhu: It’s all right if you’re not feeling well. Just lie down, and take some rest. I’ll get you the healing oil from the Bezbaruahs, and the pain will cease. Senehi—come here child, do not disturb your aai today; can’t you see, she is sick. I’ll give you something to eat. Come here.


(Shambhu picks up the crying Senehi and goes out.)



Second Act


(It is 10 in the morning. Main road.)


Ghinaram Peshkar2: Isn’t that nokolnobis dangoriya3? Hello, sir, do wait for me. I’m coming along too. Seems we’ll be marked absent today. The Hakim nowadays comes early to the Court.


Shambhu: Oh come on. Do not worry. We won’t be marked absent; it’s only ten.


Ghinaram: But sir why do you look so worn out? Couldn’t you have your bath this morning?


Shambhu: Indeed. My wife is sick you see. Therefore, this morning there was no meal cooked, and I had to come to Court unwashed.


Ghinaram: But will you spend the whole day like this? And that too in this weather? Why didn’t you cook a handful of rice for yourself?


Shambhu: I was so busy reading some worthless papers, that I got late, and so couldn’t—


Ghinaram: You Brahmins are so tough, just like the durakaaso4. You can survive for three days even on air. It is us, sudirs5 who would die of stomach burns even if a single meal is missed. You know, we see the stars. There comes the magistrate. Oh! He’s arrived only now.



Third Act


(12 noon. Kitchen. Bhawani is seated beside the souka6, cooking. Standing nearby, Senehi prattles on)


Senehi: aai, oi aai, thit big peet of fich id mine, no aai?


Bhawani: Indeed, this big piece of fish is yours. But—let me fry it first; come on don’t disturb me.


Senehi: Oi aai, aai, look at me aai, on’t you cook the cully?


Bhawani: Hey, don’t blabber on like this, who told you that I won’t cook the curry? Umm..move, let me bring down the bottle of oil.


Senehi: ooo, aai, litten, why do the lite kokbok?


Bhawani: Because the rice boils.


Senehi: No no, becod you pight wid deuta7



Fourth Act


(The kitchen floor. Bhawani and Senehi eating out of the same dish.)


Senehi: Oi aai, do not eat my big peet of fich.


Bhawani: I won’t.


Senehi: (crying) ee..eee you taid you on’t eat and now you eat haap my big peet of fich.waa...h . Let deuta7 come fom coult today, I’ll tell im, tell im.



1. aai: mother


2. Peshkar: clerk


3. nokolnobis : copyist; dangoriya: sir; a reverent form of address.


4.durakaaso: a smaller variety of tortoise


5. sudir: lower caste


6. souka: an arrangement for cooking, made of earth


7. deuta: father




By Lakhinath Bezbaruah
Translator: Stuti Goswami


[this story was published as a part of the 'Lakhinath Bezbaruah' section in the fifth edition of Quills the literary folio of Dept. of English, B.Borooah College in 2010]

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Dr. Hemalata's picture

Indian Doctors study get degree after 8 years in India, Come to USA. They again study for ECFMG for the next 2-3 yrs. After that 1-3 years wait for residency- they may do research in hospitals for free. At last they get residency, by working 48-72 hrs at a stretch, keeping their mouth shut and taking - overload burden and work load- being a foreigner closing eyes to the sublime discrimination/politics. This takes 3 -4 yrs, then they get a job in a hospital or a clinic, may be make 90-130,000/yr. If this is a woman she struggles more as she has to take care of home as well. Almost every Indian Doctor wants to do Fellowship. It Takes another 1-2 yrs wait + 3-5 yrs studies. Thus Indian Doctors study and struggle almost 18 yrs to 25 years in USA before they start practicing and making money. So, now US Government is rampantly arresting Indian Doctors and publicizing all over the world. Can we believe that a doctor struggling almost 25 yrs of their life for a simple reason - call it LOVE or Passion for their Medical profession, would go and cheat US Government by selling Tylonol and VICODIN for $50.00 to drug addicts like a junky.????? This is a shame to our country. USA trying to destroy Indian culture, reputation, destroy the respect in the whole world. FBI agents 100s of them come with guns and bring half naked children from bathrooms, arrest by chaining legs and hands to innocent Indian Doctors, take them to Federal Criminal Jail, publicize all over the world in TVs, News papers everywhere Like this Indian doctor is the biggest CRIMINAL????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. In reality, doctors don't even know what the FBI Agents are talking about. FBI takes away cars, computers, all the money from banks. Doctors, half dead come out of jail with a horrible, horrifying disgusting feeling, humiliation, insult and shock. Kids totally get banned from all their friends. Parents don't know how to handle finances, kids education, insurances....etc. Whole world will be talking about this stupid, hard working, Indian doctor. He/She would not get a job as there is a Pending Indictment. Now FBI somehow target spouse also, create a story and indict him/her. Again publicize all over the news papers. Many Parents of this Doctor/spouse, will get shock and humiliated in the society, many parents died with heart attacks and some survived after several operations. The allegations FBI makes are all LIES, MADE UP STORIES. THEY DON'T even know the Medicare Law. The lawyers start with $25,000 dollars and they drag it for few years and squeeze every penny, close to 1 million, from these desperate doctors. Many doctors and spouse try and fail to get jobs for few years survive like starving road side beggars. Once the lawyer realize there is no money, they force the Indian doctor/Spouse to Plea Guilty. Lawyers have no clue about Medicare laws. They basically work with FBI and US Govt Prosecutors. Indian Doctors already bankrupt lost all their money, ego and feel totally DEAD accept the plea with the HOPE that they can at least have the license intact. Indian Government must question US Government and STOP these Human Rights violations immediately. These inhuman Violent attacks on Indian Doctors HAS TO STOP. It is the time Indian Doctors from all over the world should come together to save innocent families and lives of Innocent Desi Doctors from these atrocities in USA..

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