Saturday, 21 April 2018

part 43:Aradhana - Anmol Bandhan


"Hi, Aunty! Hi Kripa! Namaste Uncle! Happy Ugadi to all of you." Misthy wished everyone in Sarma family when she visited them directly from her work. Gayatri invited both Malik and Saxena families for dinner on occasion of Ugadi-Telugu New Year. "Maussi! Aap bhi yehin hain?" she greeted Padma too who was already with Sarma family.
Padma smiled, "Haan, Misthy! Aaj mera bhi chutti hai Ugadi ke liye. Arman toh kaam kar raha hai magar abb tak wapas achuka hoga. Ghar mein Tannu hai, exams ke liye padhayi kar rahi hai. Yahan tere saat aana chahti hai. Maussa toh out of station hai."


Surya nodded his head as received Misthy's greetings. Gayatri affectionately received as Kripa hugged her. "Namaste, beta! Tumhey bhi Ugadi subhakamnaye hai. Humey kush hai ki tum dinner per agayi."

Misthy smiled adorably, "Kaisey nahin aati, aunty! Aap bulaye aur hum nahin aye? Aisa ho sakta hai kabhi? Humey aapka khana bahut pasand hai. Especially aapke vada mujhey aur Arman ko behud pasand hai. Aaj aap banaye they na?"

Gayatri smiled as caressed her cheeks, "kyon nahin, khaaskar tum donon ke liye hi banayi thi. Aaj baaki ka khana Kripa ne banayi thi. Wo subha se rasoi ghar mein hi thi, yeh kehke ki. Misthy ko yeh pasand hai wo pasand hai. Itni excited hogayi thi, poocho mut." She lovingly stared at Kripa. Kripa pouted at her over appraisal, "aap bhi na, mama! You are just exaggerating." She turned to Misthy, "Sara khana mama ne hi banaya tha, Misthy! Aaj mera chutti hai aur tyohar bhi. Tum meri lunch box se kha liya karti thi na, Issiliye mainey tumhari pasandgi batadiya tha." Misthy was excited at mother and daughters affections. She missed her mother. "Aunty! Main humesha yeh sochti rehti hoon ki hum yahan Hyderabad mein kaise settle hongay. Abb pata chala ki aapke pyar ko paney ke liye hi hum yahan aye they. It is true, jo bhi hota hai achey ke liye hi hota hai." Gayatri and Kripa laughed at her as agreed with her.

"Aunty! Main fresh hokar aati hoon." Misthy asked for permission and informed Padma. "Bhai aur Tannu ko saat lekar aana." Padma advised her before she left.

Misthy was surprised to see Arman in joyous mood. He just came out of shower with a towel covered around waist and was wearing his vest while humming some romantic number. "Kya baat hai, bhai! Aaj bahut kush lag rahey hai?"

Arman cheerfully looked at her and shrugged his shoulders. "I don't know. Mann machal raha hai, Dil gun guna rahi hai. Feeling happy for unknown reason." He winked at her before turned to the mirror to comb his hair.

Misthy smiled as crossed her arms at chest, "hmm, kuch toh jaroor baat hai. Koyi toh bahut dinon ke baad mera bhai ka chehra pur mushkarahut lekey aayi hai!" She raised her eyebrows when Arman tried to hide his smiles. He turned away with grin as Ridhima's beautiful face appeared in front of his eyes. He sighed by mumbling her name in mind, "Ridhima." He wiggled his head to throw away the thoughts. Misthy noticed his familiar state of lost in thoughts, "kya baat hai, Ridhima yaad agayi thi na?"

Arman smiled and rubbed his heart mischievously, "bhulaya toh kabhi yaad ayegi na?" Misthy empathetically patted his back and walked into bathroom with her towel, "teen mahina guzar chuke hai,  bhai! Jindagi mein agey bhadna seekho. Kab tak unki yaadon mein jeeyengey? By the way, you look handsome in cheerful smile. Always keep smiling."

Arman smiled and nodded his head as walked to the wardrobe for his clothes, "Pehla pyar ko bhulana itna asan nahin hai, Misthy! Aur jindagi mein agey toh bhad gaya hoon na, kahan ruk gaya tha. Jee toh raha hoon jindagi ho na ho. How can I forget my Ridhima. Wo bewafai karkey chali gayi magar main ussko apni jindagi se alag nahin samjhta." He sighed for his thoughts.



********** 



"Hello!  Is this Angad?"

"Yes, who are you? Aap kaun hai? How did you get this number? How do you know me?" Angad irately questioned to the stranger on other side of his mobile.

"Main, Dr.Sheetal, Tumharey wife ki friend hoon aur doctor bhi. Aap kaise apne responsibilities se door bhagkar chale gaye hai. Itna bereham hokar chala jaana hi hai toh shadi kiya hi kyon? Kabhi kuch andaza hai ki bechari Ridhima pur kya guzar rahi hai?  By the way, mainey yeh bataney ke liye phone kiya tha ki aapke wife pregnant hai. I haven't told this news to anyone at home yet. I expect you convey the news to your family. Mushkilon ka  samna karna seekhiye."

Angad was irritated at the stranger's lecture and interference in his life. His head spun at each word of hers. "Who is this woman? What the he** is she interfering in my life matters? Issey respect karkey baat karna bhi nahin aata hai. Ridhima is pregnant? Who is the father? Kya issi wajah se Gupta ji ne yeh shadi ki jaldbaji ki thii? Kya mom janti hai iske barein mein? Humaray shadi ke baad bhi unn donon ke beech sambandh raha?  Kya main un donon ke beech agaya tha? Abb main kya karoon? Un donon ke beech se hut jaoon? Iske liye toh main hur waqt taiyyar hoon. Magar Yeh aurat mujhey kyon jimmedaar tehara rahi hai? That means undonon ke beech abb kuch contacts nahin hai? Kya uss admi ney Ridhima ko cheat kiya tha? Kaun tha wo?  Yeh aurat kya chahti hai mujhse? Kya wo aurat Ridhima ki kehney per phone ki thi? What do they expect from me?  Give my name to the baby? Why would I take the responsibility to this??"

He unintentionally called Aaliyah and Kartik to inform the news and requested to take care of Ridhima. His responsibility towards his wife started acting instantly without his knowledge. Aaliyah and Kartik promised their support till he reached home. He ran to the airport after hung up the phone, to catch the next flight to India.

On other end, Sheetal hung the phone and chuckled at Ridhima. Ridhima was furious on her. "Yeh kya bachpana hai, Sheetal! I shouldn't have given his number to you. Mujhey pata nahin tha tum iss tarah unsey baat karogi." Ridhima held her spinning head as complained at her action.

Sheetal came closer to her "I wanted to bring justice to you, Ridhima! You don't deserve this humiliation. Kya dosh tha tumhara? Yahi ki apne papa se itna pyar karti ho? Tum toh apne papa se kuch keh nahin pati thi. Atleast Angad shouldn't have run away like this. He should have told you about his love instead of writing a letter and runaway. He should have known the truth and brought you two lovers together. He should have realized that you both are in the same boat. Faisla wahin hojata, tumhari wo so called suhagraat pur. Bina bataye problem se bhagta rahega toh bhi kab tak? Abb toh tum Armaan ka bache ki maa banne jaarahi hai. How long can you hide this truth? Yeh baat sunkar kya tumhare sasural waley tumhey respect karengey? They clearly knew you both haven't consummated your relationship. Why should you punish yourself? Angad might help you now. Unhey bhi tum pur koyi dilchaspi nahin tha. He would have a solution for this. Angad hi tumhey Armaan ke paas wapas lejaa sakta hai. Let your so called husband come and handle this situation. Tum toh khud unsey kabhi kuch keh paogi nahin. So I took initiative to teach him his responsibility towards you."

Ridhima hugged her with tears flowing over cheeks, "sorry, Sheetal! Maine itna socha nahin. You are true friend of mine. I didn't know our friendship issi din ke liye bana tha."

Sheetal patted her back. "Ridhima! Jo bhi hota hai ache ke liye hi hota hai. It is God's grace, I was there when you hit the floor. I moved to Mumbai after marriage last month. I came here exclusively to meet you. I know you were married to someone else, Raj ne bataya tha. Arman left the old job and moved from our apartments. I don't know about his whereabouts. Raj bhi kuch batanay se inkaar kardiya tha. Don't worry, wo bhi abb jaldi pata karengey. Actually, tumsey Sanjeevani mein milna chahta tha, magar tab tak tum hospital se nikal chuki thi. Main ek ghanta se yahan tumhari intezaar karta raha. I took immediate care of you when you fell unconscious and found the news. I'm not sure if the baby is Armaan's or Angad's. Issiliye main kisi ko bataya nahin. Tumse such sunkar chain mila hai. You are lucky Angad is not interested in you. Samjho, sab kuch tumhari bhalayi ke liye hi horaha hai. Now you have a chance to go back to your love." Ridhima wiped her tears as both recollected the past and present.



**************

"HMM, Aunty! Aapke khana ka jawab nahin. It is so tasty. I love to have this food every day." Misthy praised the dishes as licked her fingers openly. Armaan laughed at her, "careful behena! Roj aise hi dal chawal, vada khati rahi toh tumharey liye dulha dekhna mere liye mushkil hojayega."

Misthy pouted her mouth, "Don't worry, bhai! Pehla tum shadi karlo aur mere liye dulha meri bhabhi dhoondegi." She took a chance of his jolly mood. Arman shook his head with a smile as couldn't say anything more in front of outsiders.

Gayatri and Padma laughed at their conversation. "Armaan! Khaney do beta! Ek din khaney se wajan thodi badjati? Waisey Misthy jaisi ladki aaj kal kahan milti hai? Koyi toh jaroor puja kar raha hai Misthy ke liye." Gayatri sided Misthy. Misthy raised her eyebrows proudly at Arman. Arman laughed at their affectionate relationship. Both Misthy and Arman found their mother in Gayatri's hospitality.

Arman spent an hour exclusively with Surya as went through his physiotherapy procedures. He gave tips and suggestions to recoup fast. Surya liked Arman's soft nature and respectful behavior with elders. Misthy and Kripa had chit-chat over general subjects while Padma and Gayatri talked about present generation. Tannu left as soon finished her dinner to study for the exams.

**********

Next morning Sastry visited Sarma Family  to convey the festive wishes.  Gayatri handed coffee to Surya and Sastry as updated about their get-to-gather last night. "Kitney achey log hai. Kitna namrat se pesh aatey hai. Yakein hi nahin hota iss jamaney mein bhi aise log hai." Gayatri praised the guests from last night Surya agreed as nodded her head.

"Humarey Kripa ke liye aisa rista aaye toh? Kya khayal hai aapke?" Sastry sipped coffee with big grin. Both wife and husband looked at each other confusingly. Sastry interfered again. "Bhai Sarma! Bhabhi! Mera baat ko bura na maniye. Kripa ke liye humarey ristedaron se rista aana thoda mushkil hogaya hai. Khaas kar abb aapke stithi ko dekh kar kuch hesitate karengey. Aap mere baat ko bura na maniye. Bhai toh apahiz hai aur aap akeli kahan kahan Kripa ke liye ristey lekey ayengey? Aap bhi pehla humare kul ke bahar ka rista ko apnaney ko taiyyar hogaye they na. Khanna pariwar se behetar hai yeh rista. Ladka doctor hai. Na saas sasur ka janjhat na nanad ki . Kripa ko jindagi bhar kuwari rakhenge toh nahin na? Phir aap kahey toh ek bar Padma Ji se baat chala kar dekhoon?"

Gayatri and Surya unbelievingly exchanged looks. Surya hesitated to pursue the inter-caste alliance. Sastry's words about Khanna family convinced him too. "Magar, Sastry! Kya itna bada doctor Kripa ko sweekar karengey? Kya sochengey humare jaisa rista ke barein mein? " Gayatri hesitantly expressed her doubts.

Sastry convinced her, "Bhabhi! Ek baar baat chalaney se kya bigaad jayega? Agar unhey manzoor nahin toh na sahi. Kitney riste baat chalaney se pehle hi mukhad jaatey hai. Yeh bhi usmein ek hojayegi na?" Both Sarma and Gayatri fell into thoughts as plenty of doubts surrounded them.

* *******

Naina was excited to see Angad all of sudden. "Angad! Tum agaya hai. We are missing you very badly, beta. Kaise ho." Angad stopped her in the middle by his hand, "Where is Ridhima?" Naina was frowned at his serious face without usual greetings. She mumbled, "bahar gayi hai." Angad turned before she finish her sentence. Naina tried to stop him. "Angad kahan jaa rahey ho? She is fine now. Kal kuch dhaki huyi thi. Uski friend turant care liyi thi. Tum refresh hoke thoda aram karo, tab tak wo ajayengi." She wanted to keep him at home for some more time.

Angad gave her sharp looks and stepped out without stopping at her affectionate pleadings.

He called Ridhima and Sheetal responded to the call. Angad controlled his frustration and took the directions to meet Ridhima at Sheetal's clinic.

"Angad! You have to take care of Ridhima. She needs you very badly. I know you are not the father of her baby. Unke papa toh unki baat ek bhi nahin sune they. For God Sake, tum bhi kissi aur se pyar karte ho. Phir tum donon ko yeh rista rakhney mein koyi matlab nahin hai. Mujhey nahin pata tum yeh problem kaise deal karte ho. I can say only one suggestion, "divorce". I don't know how your families react for this, and, how you both would handle it.  As a husband it would be your responsibility in this society and in front of your family to keep your wife safe. Shadi ka dharm yehi hoti hai. Don't embarrass her in front of your family and this society. She is innocent. She lost her love. She wants her baby to take birth. Hope, you understand her situation now." Sheetal softly gave a big lecture non-stop as updated past of Ridhima, ignoring Angad's frustration.

He impatiently settled his throat, "Good lecture. I know what I have to do. Mujhey kissi ki salah ki jaroorat nahin hai. Thanks for interfering in our lives so far and taking care of your friend. Now would you tell me where is she?"

Sheetal smiled as his anger showed no impact on her. "She is weak. She needs your support. Abhi initial stage hai. Just three months. Main blood test ka results aney ke baad date confirm karungi."

Angad couldn't control his anger anymore, "aap kabhi lecture aur salah deney bund karengi yuh issi tarah stupid advices dete rahengi?"

Sheetal laughed at his anger and called Ridhima who was resting inside room of Sheetal's cabin.

"Chaliye," Angad checked Ridhima from head to toe and ordered to leave. Ridhima silently followed him as Sheetal secretly mouthed "Goodluck" from behind.

vijaya

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