Not This Time My Child…

Lajjo knew there was no escape to it but still the tears refused to stop. How could she do it? Her little baby, her child, wouldn’t she even get to see her face? Feel her little hand entwine on her fingers, know the delight of watching her small lips cry out “Ma” for the first time? She had spent her childhood playing with dolls & getting them married off. Won’t she get a chance to see her daughter off, bedecked in finery with the choicest jewels adorning her beautiful darling? Her heart felt as if it would burst out. She wanted to cry out loud, stop this injustice.

And then she remembered. She remembered her best friend from school, who was suddenly married off at the tender age of 14 only to be tortured endlessly by her in-laws for dowry, Meena who died during labour when she was 16. And then she remembered Anu, who had fallen in love with a boy from a different caste. All they had left of her was a small picture. She was smiling in it. She remembered Suman whom the elders of the village forbade from continuing her education in college & got her married of instead. Suman who always stood first, always knew the answers to the questions-was now a mother of 4 kids at 21. She shuddered when she remembered Gita. No one spoke of her in this village. She had embarrassed them all. Taken to the city by her uncle, it was rumoured she was sold off into the flesh trade. Not even her parents tried to find her…

Lajjo wiped her tears-“May be its better you are not born. The care I have given you till now, I can’t promise to protect you further. If I can’t protect you from your own father, what right do I have to bring you to this world? May be when the world is better, a mother like me will welcome you with a smile, somewhere. Not this time…not this time…”


13 thoughts on “Not This Time My Child…

  1. Sad but truth; female feticide was practiced all over in India. Acts from Raja Ram Mohan Roy did a great deal. Sigh! After so much urbanization there are still some villages where such gender discrimination lives.

  2. So true!! How can these people forget that the person behind their very existence on this earth is from the same gender as the one they are trying the eliminate?? Tragic Irony!

  3. Pingback: Not This Time My Child… (via Whispering Silence) « Savedaughters19's Blog

    • That’s what made me write this..Taking into account the rate of crimes against women…sometimes i feel that they were lucky..those girls who escaped coming into this male-dominated world..

  4. When my daughter was five months old, in 1991, I saw a TV programme called PUKAR, a series of stories about courageous women who fought against oppressive social customs. I wish they would show it again. There is this story of a Rajput woman who is expected to kill her daughter – a third daughter. I had a little baby girl in my lap as I watched this mother being compelled to kill her new born daughter. She was writhing in labour, when her mother in law warned her that this one had better be a boy. Once the girl is born, the mother tries to buy time. She had persuaded them to let the first two daughters live. This time no excuses were accepted. I watched as the day of the killing comes closer. They take the mother and new born daughter to a Kali Temple. She lays the baby on a stone in the temple. And surrounding her are the brave Rajput men, goading her husband, who is considered a ‘joru ka ghulam’ for having two live daughters to live in a village where girls were either drowned or fed poisonous sap from aankra plant. Timid women watched her, terrified, remembering, reliving their own traumas. And then she is given the sword by her best friend, who assures her that she had sharpened it so the death will be quick, and won’t hurt the baby too much. This woman takes the sword in her trembling hands, she looks at everybody and lifts up the glittering sword and tells everybody, “I am a brave Rajputani and I will not hesitate to use this sword”, and she brings it down swiftly beside her sleeping child, “at anybody who dares to try to hurt my daughter.”

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