December 10, 2018

In the Forest of the night

I stay awake and wonder hard.

I think again and ponder what.

Why do I think of something that comes so easily to me but is difficult to ponder for others.. why do they not understand the truth of life... that the world today is in a state of crisis. And you are doing pretty much too less about it..

Infact, you may just be doing nothing with respect to conserving nature...

I work in the forests, I have given up a lot of things to live a life such as this.. I do not regret my decision but sometimes wonder the futility of it all.

Neither am I earning comparable money nor am I able to sway the minds of those who need most to understand the wrongs done by their action or inaction. It is all in futility or what????

December 8, 2018

Looking Back

Long back, in another time, we children were frolicking in the Jabalpur heat with cousins and more. Life was cool, people were happy, work was fine.

Now, today, there is no reason to go down the dumps. As children, we had our problems, our frustrations, mutual jealousies and what not. But the nature of man is such that he hardly remembers those bad times. Only good times prevail.

I speak as if Chandigarh was a bundle of Joy. I forget the worries of the time. The same ultimately happened for IIFM too. That is life, for it tells us to seek joy and be happy.

Today, the gods blessed us... Thank you, O god for blessing us...

December 7, 2018

The Past

What happened in the present past,
was a scare that woke me up.
What happened should not have....

But now is the present
and the power lies beneath us,
Now, the past shall have removed...
Remembered, yes, but only as a reminder,
for the future to be fair and better.

The past has no role - except to teach us lessons
The past teaches us to live in the present.
The past is but a bell, keeping us awake of the impending clime.
The past is good, for it is our teacher....
Remember it yes, but not fear it.... NEVER

December 6, 2018

Pressures on the forest- Mudumalai

Mudumalai is situated on the southern extremity of the Mysore Plateau and separated from the Sigur plateau by the Moyar River and bound by the Nilgiri massif in the south east. The sanctuary is unique in several aspects as it was among the earliest declared protected areas of the nation. More than 70 years of protection have resulted in a high faunal density as well as adequate natural regeneration.
However, the sanctuary is not bereft of problems. Though, it is fortunate to be bounded on two sides by Bandipur and Wynad, yet it continues to reel under rapidly increasingly biotic pressure from the east and south. Small towns like Masinagudi and Singara pose immense threat to the fragile ecosystem, besides the numerous villages dot the area along Gudalur. Land rights are still ambiguous and encroachments are common. The plantations eat up into the forest most of the time and often there is a small thread of sanity that divides the forest from the hungry cash crops. Farmers have devised unique ways of living in their strange lifestyle and are up against the elements as well as the giant pachyderms that constantly threat to invade their fields. However it is the tribals who are the worst lot. With their traditional rights having been blotched, they are between the horns dilemma, having nowhere to go. There is no land available for resettlement, much of the allotted land for the insiders of the sanctuary has already been encroached upon, and even while they stay inside they are constantly harassed by the forest department and exploited by petty traders who buy numerous minor forest produce (not so minor for those whose life depends upon the quantity of honey collected each year) at dirt cheap rates.
The issue of encroachment is all pervading. Inside the sanctuary, lies the Benne block having a few patta lands. There are a few groups of Chetti patta land in Mudumalai block as well. Combining benne and Mudumalai forest, the total leased land is 55.00 hectares. In addition to this, the Chetties and the other tribes are cultivating 645.63 acres in different revenue settlement inside the sanctuary. The forest department has plans to relocate the people living inside the sanctuary to other places in the taluk. The villages originally envisaged for rehabilitation were Srimadurai and Cherumulli with potential land being offered as high as 1600 acres. But there has been little further progress in this matter.

With rapidly increasing populations and a shrinking land base, it is but critical that the sanctuary be accorded greater safety, but in hardening their stance, the forest department often isolates the marginal tribal groups who have no other means of livelihood, other than the forest and its resources. The tussle goes on and in the midst of all, suffers the tress and the tribals.

November 25, 2018

A Silent Man's prayer

What is there to be felt when the mind feels numb.

What is there to be had when all that is mine is lost for good.

Strange may be all the things that are but is that not the unique appeal about them.

Strange though strangely different. All things in life are so different. All things have their meaning.

Everything that happens, happens so for a reason, is it not.

And all I know is that I am standing on the edge. The abyss.

I am living my life dangerously. Rather life is making me play a silly non-comprehensible game.

What I think hardly matters as I have stopped thinking.

Thinking is passe now.

I have read somewhere that stagnancy is man's worst enemy.

I know for sure that anything does not lead to mental and physical sustenance is not good for health.

Hmmm, breaking free is not easy

Two people pass by

Two people pass me by,
Smile, stop and say a hi...
Enjoy the clouds, enjoy the moment - they say
Enjoy that the winds that flows

And then they say hello and wish me luck,
Then they leave, leaving me
With love and pain and a cry

November 22, 2018

Snakes and me

As a child and while I was growing up, snakes held a fascination that bordered on the obsessiveness for me. I was born in the rural parts of Bengal that is the natural home to so many snake species and numbers that one leaves count of them and refers to all as 'shaap'. It was in this environment that I met up with real snakes and snake stories that never seem to end.
Now so many years later, i feel that snake stories are buut an integral part of all communities in india, everywhere there is a snake god or snake gem and so on. It was in those days of those movies Nagina and Nigahein where the supremely beautiful Sridevi did all those snake dances and brought the lore of the snake deeply within millions of small and growing children like us. I was made to believe that snakes if killed, would return and definitely target you sooner than later. Ineffect, a snake's patner or some next of kin would come and take it's revenge before your own lifetime comes to an end. This installed fear was so overbearing that even now I think of it to be true. Second, was the power of snakes with respect to its economic benefits. Even in this, which I still sometimes consider to be true, the snake was considered to be the forebringer of valuable gems that lay somewhere above and behinds its outstretched hood. This gem gave the snake the sobriquet of neelkanth. Neelkanth or not, neither did I nor anyone I knew had the courage to search for the gem in its hood. Yes, but of course for Sidharth, who in his infinite wisdom and courage had even done this. He had claimed that he or someone from his illustrious friend group had indeed had a snake in their vast godowns that was a neelkanth. I never did get to see them, neither did he show us his pet blue whale or baby elephant.
But the snake stories lay inside me all the time. And in addition to the stories was the real happenings that continue till today.
I experienced snakes all through my childhood and being in the present profession, I manage to come across them once in while presently. Of all, the most abiding memory remains that of the snake in my birth place, a cobra, a cobra that gave me the fear of life. It was one moring when I was sitting and studying on the driveway that comes up from the main gate in Girmint colliery. It was early morning and mummy called me to take my glass of milk. I had been sitting since early and was focussing on the studies. However, in my half sleep and partial drowsiness, I absentmindedly came upon the chair and sat on it with a thud. It was afyter a few seconds that I heard a hiss, a real hiss that no human could have possibly made. Turning back, half expecting a snake below my chair and getting more excited at the thought, I turned back and saw to my greatest scare, a snake was coiled to my chair and was hissing on my turned face now.
AAAAAASSSSSSHHHHHHH ..............and I was off to the ground, leaving the snake saping in shock, much as I was in shock... What happened next, wfter my hysterical shouting had woken up the entire country was a sad demise of the snake and with it, one of the stories of its partner coming back to take its revenge against its killers. For, the bhaiyas that had killed the poor snake are still running and doing fine..... But I did learn a lesson, never cause a snake to die because of your shouts....
I still think in disbelief and wonder aloud, how did the snake coil itself around that broad chair and why at such an early morning that day... i still wonder.....


In the Forest of the night