Some other children

Amidst all the chaos of my Children’s day preparations, I clicked on the NDTV homepage featuring some other children-the ones losing their struggle for surviving beyond the day.

It took me back many years to a tiny, deserted railway station in Rajasthan.

We were returning from a college trip and the train slowed down at a signal. A woman walked close to the train, with a little baby in a basket. A couple of us were hanging at our usual spot near the compartment door and I leaned out and waved merrily at the baby.

The woman seemed to rush over, talking desperately and almost thrusting the basket at me. Unable to follow her words, I stepped back, was she begging?

My friend pulled me up a step  as the train picked up speed again. The woman ran the length of the platform holding out the basket as I fished out some money and started to throw it near her.

“She is not asking for money,” my friend insisted, “she wants you to take the baby.”

We had left the platform by then and I was still struggling to understand: She was saying she was going to throw the baby on the tracks, then she saw you looking at her, and ran after you.

It took time to sink in.

Was it real?

That woman was really going to throw her baby on the tracks? Why didn’t I grab the basket?

“Are you crazy? Just imagine the hostel warden’s reaction if we went back with a baby.”

I was still shaken. We could have given the baby to some NGO, some mother who would have kept her, but it was too late.

I still feel guilty.

Because I am afraid that nobody else grabbed that basket either. And that baby too met the fate that so many other baby girls in our country do.

I still want to go back and help a few babies like her. Writing about her is just the beginning, I hope I can do something more.

Someday soon.

Thanks to blogadda for picking this post-we need all the help we can in rooting out this evil



Comments

  1. I'm sure you won't forget this incident throughout your life.

    I hope that someone did take the baby...

    but I think it's hoping against in an apathetic country.

    Am I being Cynic ?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Don't be too hard on yourself. You did what felt right at that time. Just taking out the time to recall that event and share it with us is more than enough. None of us would have had the courage to actually take the baby in such a situation.

    I'm ashamed to say even I would not have had the courage to take the baby in such a situation.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Omg! thatz so painful :( and hard to believe someone does that even though we listen to so many stories like that :(

    I just hope someone wud hv taken the baby; but anyone wud hv been in a state of confusion ... rather blank @ that moment no :(

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ashish: I too wish and hope that someone took her. Or maybe that woman took her back again-after all she was desperate enough to run with the train-when she thought the baby might have a chance.

    Ramit: Thanks. I know-thinking of what I should or could have done that time is futile. I just hope I can make a difference now.

    Swaram: Yes, it is so awful when it happens-and so different from hearing about it. I still get goosebumps remembering that scene.

    My reaction at that moment would have made such a big difference.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Such moments are memorable and life-changing.

    Though you were too young to do anything then, that guilt is good. It sounds strange to say that guilt is good, but I think something good will come out this guilt. Go on girl, do what you have thought of. Do it whenever you can.

    ReplyDelete
  6. As much as it is shocking to hear about infanticide its a stark reality that even today it happens.

    Nonetheless if there are more and more people like you who feel strongly about the issue and make an effort to help the bereaved souls then we'll surely have a better tomorrw.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Congratulations on the Blogadda pick,hypermom..this post deserved to be picked :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Poonam: Yes I have regretted that moment forever-but I have also procrastinated over doing something concrete for ages. Work and family always take precedence-and each delay may cost something like this. I hope I am able to do something very soon.

    Deeps: I certainly hope there is a tomorrow for them.

    You are among the first to tell me about the blogadda pick-Thank you so much!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hey R, Congrats on the blog adda pick. WTG :) Add the widget here na :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am so shocked. She really begged you to take the baby!! And why aren't we thinking this is impossible!
    What kind of world do we live in? And what a society that puts mothers in such horrendous situations? Maybe her family would throw her out if she took the baby back home :( I hope she found a loving couple dying for a little baby girl...
    Thanks for blogging about this Hypermom.

    ReplyDelete
  11. So heart-wrenching! Must have made you feel so helpless..

    It is so sad that people resort to killing their babies just because it is not of the desired gender.. So so depressing o think about.

    Congratulations on the blogadda pick! This post deserves it!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Swaram: Thanks. Your support has been very important to me :)
    (what widget??)

    IHM: I've really prayed n hoped that the baby found a home.
    It was such a shock that I still feel the horror. Unfortunately it is a reality that still exists.

    Smitha: I think I just went numb for some time.
    Yes it is a practice which questions our claim to be the cradle of civilizations. Even animals take better care of their newborn. Poverty, lack of education, whatever.. cannot be excuses for THIS

    ReplyDelete
  13. I mean that badge that this post has been selected by blogadda :)

    ReplyDelete

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