She kept pulling her frock…pointing towards the room upstairs…her eyes were full of horror… traces of tears could be seen as some scribbling on her tender cheeks…
Her disheveled hair was a telltale…her tiny finger was stuck pointing in one direction…….
Her mother hugged her tight….so tight that her sobs became inaudible in the close embrace of her warm hug…..
“Shhhh…….stop stop stop crying”He mother smoothed her hair…wiped her tears…and placed her finger on her lips…..
“Ma loves you…you are safe….come here…stay here…stop crying….” she consoled her…
She hugged her mother tight and let out prolonged mournful cry….loud..louder…..
Her mother pulled her inside the room…..
“Shhhh…..stop crying, people will hear…now you are safe…”

Shanta was mopping the floor….she stopped and asked…..
“What happened memsaab….why is bitiya crying?”

“Nothing…you do your work…” she hushed her…

Shanta…looked at the little girl who was sobbing still and looking at the room upstairs…..

She felt sorry for her …as the little girl was born with the inability to speak….she could hear but could not speak…

She wiped her hands with her sari and pushed the bucket aside in anger,
“Hugging her so tight to comfort her or to sabotage her voice?
Is she really safe?why can’t you see what I can see…..you are her mother….look at her state…don’t you understand what has happened?hugging her in your close embrace might comfort her but it will not secure her….it will not do any justice to the child….it might soothe her hurt temporarily but scar her mind, body, and soul…. forever.how could you let go of somebody so easily,,…when will you raise an alarm???keeping quiet means you have chosen the side of the oppressor ….”Shanta bai was almost fuming…..
“Ok enough….do your work…you talk too much” she tried to hush her too…

“I am doing my work…..but ARE YOU?”

“Look…she cannot speak….let’s not assume things…she could have fallen down or something…” her mother spoke without looking in the eye of shantabai…..avoiding an eye contact…..
“Memsaab who are you trying to fool?are you trying to justify an act of injustice??by keeping silent, you are giving consent to what has happened today….you are encouraging the oppressor …evil survive on apathy memsaab….go feed him and make him stronger….you can not understand the body language of your child…her condition is demanding attention…..it’s only people like you who are responsible for such crimes in the close walls of so called secured homes….we-the uneducated lot are far better than the so called educated people like you…..” she was furious now……

“Shut up,…I said…I told you..she cannot speak…nobody will believe it”

“Nobody will believe???who do u want to prove?first ask yourself….do you believe her????????only you need to believe in her memsaab….not the rest of the world……ha…your argument is so shallow….. -she cannot speak….but memsaab…neither can you…

CAN YOU…..?????????????????????????

Her last two words…hammered her deep inside……
She looked at this poor, uneducated lady clad in a dirty sari…..she looked fierce…strong and determined contrary to her own self…..
Those two words-CAN YOU….jolted her conscience….it shook her soul…n woke her up from a denial state……she held her daughter’s hand tight……kicked the door ….but stopped….turned back…and looked at Shanta…..
“You are right….it was me who had the inability to speak….not my daughter, thanks for reminding me that I have a voice…I CAN n I MUST speak….” she zoomed out ……heading towards the room upstairs

The doors which were closed for long had finally been opened…and once again…the history was going to be repeated…
Salutation to Shakti…..
We are fortunate to be born with an ability to speak…
So proclaim the truth and do not be silent through fear…..

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