Life shows many things, some good and some bad. I shared two incidents of happy ending in my previous posts. I could not hold back a sad incident which happened a few years ago while I was in an organization where my work involved meeting Government officials at various levels. This included police department also.
Hazari Lal, who had migrated to Delhi over two decades ago, was looking after cafeteria of that organization. He was liked by everyone for his gentle behaviour. It was after my stay of about a year there that I saw him without smile for a couple of days while he brought tea. That was not his usual self. So I asked him if something was on his mind. He hesitated for a while then told me that he would speak to me later if I allowed him to do so alone. I normally used to leave office 15 to 20 minutes after closing time but that day I told him that I will wait for him to come over. I am narrating below what transpired in that meeting and subsequently.
He had 4 children. Eldest was daughter who was 17 years old at that time. Younger were two boys of 14 & 8 and a girl of 12. He himself was educated only upto 5 class which enabled him to keep simple accounts of his work. However he had realized that education was a must for progress. So he sent all his children to school. Eldest one, Dulari, was in 12th standard and was doing quite well in commerce stream. He was keen on her joining the same organization in finance department after completing graduation. The final board examinations were just 4 months away. He told me that she had become totally withdrawn and refused to go to school for the past one week. She refused to tell reasons but cried if she was told to either go to school. She did not confide in her mother also. He stated that he was very disturbed and wanted advice. I told him that I would think over what to do. Next day I spoke to a young lady in HR who was postgraduate in Psychology and we shared a good rapport as we used to join hands in solving a lot of problems faced by workers. She expressed that we cannot say anything unless we speak to the girl. I was of the same opinion. So we fixed up visiting his house on Sunday which was a couple of days later.
We found Dulari to be an above average girl in intelligence as well as looks. She was hesitant to speak to us as we were total strangers. We also felt that she may not open up in front of her parents. So I took him aside to tell him that when I signal he should go away alongwith others leaving us alone with the girl. We then first introduced ourselves giving our needed background to put her at ease and then asked her about her school activities etc indulging in small talk encouraging her to speak. As she started speaking little freely I signaled to her father as arranged. They stayed in a two roomed flat bought by him a few years ago with help from company. He took his wife and other children to other room. It took some cajoling by my companion to make her open up. She kept looking at me before she started speaking, so I offered to leave but she told me not to as I would need to know what happened to help her. What she then told us was shocking.
A little over a year earlier she had come in touch with a student in her school who was in 12th at that time. It was in one of inter-school competitions where he was team leader. The school won first position mainly due to their efforts. They started speaking to each other off and on which in normal course of time developed into friendship. He passed out of school but used to come and meet her everyday even after he joined college. She used to look for his company as he paid a lot of attention to her. He used to advise her on studies and other activities in which she took part. A number of times she went to his house which was close to the school. He was staying with his uncle and aunt who did not have any children. They were both working, thus they used to be alone in the house. Over a few such visits they got further than holding hands or kissing and hugging. It lead to their making love when they both were carried away with excitement. She cried after that and he consoled her by saying that he would marry her once they complete their education. That was about 3 months earlier. Thereafter they did not hesitate in making love whenever they felt like it. A month later two boys who knew him got into the house through an open window without their knowledge and caught them when they were making love. They told that they had suspected them of doing it and decided to catch them. They then threatened her that they would tell her parents as well as her school principal. She cried begging them to leave her and she would never do it again. Her friend too begged them offering them whatever money they wanted. They laughed and told that they wanted the girl. Her friend tried to reason out with them and even tried to fight but they were too strong for him. They hit him hard which made her scared that they may harm him badly. She told them to stop hitting him and she will do whatever they wanted. So they tied up her friend and both took turns with her while he watched helplessly. That is when her ordeal started. They then used to force him to bring her home to have her whenever they wanted which was almost every week. She was totally in their hands. They made her do acts she was too ashamed to tell. That is when she went into stunned depression refusing to go to school. On our asking she told that her friend was now avoiding her and met her only when they wanted him to call her. She also told that they had not given anything in writing or seen them taking any photographs. This was a real tricky situation as she did not want her parents or anyone else to know of this. She even said that she had thought of committing suicide. She gave us names of her friend as well those boys. I asked her to give us a couple of days and then she could go back to school without any fear. We told her parents that she had been teased by some boys who are local goondas which has scared her and she did not want them to get into trouble by going to police.
On the way back I discussed a plan with my colleague and she agreed with it in toto. The plan was to avoid involving Dulari’s name thus protecting her from any loose talk. We put that plan in action next day and it took two days to have success. It was not strictly legal but at the same time we did not indulge in any illegal activity also. We used my contacts with police as well as some of heavy weight union leaders. She rejoined school four days after our meeting. Her boyfriend went back to his home town joining college there. I moved out of that organization a year & half later. I have learnt that she joined that company as per her father’s wishes.
My idea of sharing this is to impress on young girls to be careful in what they do, why young girls only, anyone for that matter of fact.
PS : Names as well as some settings have been changed for protecting privacy.