Home Books & Authors Maharaja Dahir – Resurgence of Sindh – Part-XXVII

Maharaja Dahir – Resurgence of Sindh – Part-XXVII

Maharaja Dahir – Resurgence of Sindh – Part-XXVII

The English translation of a novel ‘Maharaja Dahir’ authored by Kolkata-based renowned novelist Debasree Chakraborti in Bengali language. The novel has been translated by Rajesh Giri


Year 2021

It is sunset time now. Maa sitting on an altar built in a corner of the courtyard, makes butter in an earthen pot. While swinging with both the hands on the rope churning butter, she looks like mother Yashoda; the friction of the pot with the wooden churning stick makes a peculiar sound; there is an intense empathy associated with this sound. Mithila enjoyed a lot to consume butter hand skimmed by our mother. That’s why when she fled away from home, there remains little enthusiasm in preparing butter like before in the house. When any puja is organized at home, by the order of budhdha baba, maa prepares butter for the deity. Last night dad returned home and informed that they got visa for one month to visit India. Budhdha Baba’s wish of many years is about to be fulfilled, so a pooja is organized in this house this evening. And after a while, the members of the neighboring Hindu family would come to their house. Maa finishing the preparation of the puja sat down to make the butter. She reaches into the pot and scoops out chunks of butter by hand and keeping it into a white stone bowl beside him. Sanghamitra came out of the room with a ghee lamp, matchstick box, flowers, sindoor and a laddu decorated on a small dish. Mother looked at her from behind the veil and asked, “Where are you going this time?” Sanghamitra said, “Maa, I took a vow for visa in the Jain temple. Baba got the visa, so I am going to light a ghee lamp and do some pooja in front of God. Don’t worry, I will be back before evening.”

Mother said while doing her work, “Hey miss, your father hears many things about you, I don’t know what sin I have committed, after Mithila we have to lose you too. Keep your family’s dignity in mind.

Sanghamitra bowed his head and said, “Mother, I will be back before puja.” Saying this, she continued on her way. The sun is setting in the far desert; passing the house of the Raja, thicket of thorn trees begins; on one side of that thicket is a broken Jain temple. Darkness has descended on the premises of this temple, while passing under a big banyan tree, she looked up and saw several dots of light. All these dotted lights are the eyes of all titmice. These eyes glow in the darkness of the night. Many times it happens that when she passes under the tree, the tree seems to represent the map of the Sindh and these titmice are intruders, whose eyes glow in the darkness of the night. Sanghamitra stepped quickly into the dark sanctum and looked back to see Mehboob standing on the right side of the wall. Mehboob’s face cannot be seen well in the dark. Sanghamitra said, “Say what you have to say quickly, I have no time at all.”

Mahboob said but in a very low tone, “you really do not have time. Listen carefully to what I am saying, tomorrow your Nikah is not happening, tomorrow they will just convert you, then make you eat something that will give you terrible stomach ache.”

Sanghamitra became very perturbed and said, “My stomach will start to hurt? What is the benefit of making me sick?”

—They certainly have profit by making you sick. If stomach pain starts you will be taken to a private hospital. There they make you unconscious and a bomb will be inserted into your body through surgery.

Sanghamitra’s whole body began to tremble. The evening desert air entering through the small entrance of the temple producing a strange sound. There is a chilling coldness in those words. Her throat became dry. She is assuming as if she can listen the footsteps of death. Then she sat on the floor trembling and put the plate down from her hand and said, “What do I do now? Mehboob, save me, what shall I do?”

Mehboob sat next to her and said, “listen, I can tell you only one thing right now, keep faith on us and whatever you are going to do right now, do it for your country Sindh. As long as new country is being established, our misery will not go away. Only brave girls like you will remove the thorn in the way of establishing a new country, only then the rise of our poor unfortunate Sindhu Mata will happen with full glory.

Sanghamitra cried and said, “Mehboob, I don’t want to die as a suicide bomber.”

Mehboob held Sanghamitra’s hand tightly and said, “What did I say? Trust us. There would be no harm in not informing you these things. However, instructions have come from the other side that whatever is happening or is going to happen, you should know and understand everything, so that you can make your own decision. Light the lamp and pray to God and go home, it is dark all around.”

Sanghamitra lit the lamp and disappeared herself into the darkness outside.

Raja Dahir - Bengali book
Maharaja Dahir – A novel authored by Debasree Chakraborti in Bengali language

Sanghamitra continued through the desert; the distant desert wind accompanying the folk music. With the running stream of time, her existence everything mingled together. Entering the house she found her mother. Mother prepares offerings in front of the deity with tears in her eyes. At this moment her mother, Mithila and Sindhi woman tend to have singular existence to her. Mother’s tears are the most precious to her. We have to fight with the danger to relieve the sorrow of the motherland similar to Mother Durga who killed Mahishasura. Pictures of Mahadev and Sherawali Durga mother are kept side by side. A lamp is lit in front. Sanghamitra’s eyes littered in the light of the lamp.

With the passage of time, the darkness of the night passed away and the nature become bright with the touch of the Sun God. Amidst the void desert all around, the distant barbed wire border can be seen, in the vast stretch of this desert on scorching midday, the presence of the mirage in the form of a water source, which can be chased, but never be reached. There is no end to the number of people who have been lost in this desert chasing the mirage.

Sanghamitra sat by the window of the moving car and contemplated the mirage. Today is her nikah with Ahmed, before which she has to accept Islam through a small ceremony. The ceremony was organized in an unknown mosque which is quite far from Tharparkar, on the way there she thought seeing a mirage in the middle of the desert that the life of Mithila, Sanghamitra including all other girls of Sindh province are like this mirage. One day she also has to get lost in this vast expansion of the desert chasing the mirage. Today I am badly remember my mother, my father and that old budhdha baba. For the past three days budhdha baba has high fever, she left the house by excuse of buying medicine. After some time her mother will start looking for her along with the neighbours. When Mithila left, my father was fainting again and again, mother was crying like crazy. This continued day after day, but Mithila never returned. My father can’t take this shock anymore.

But Mehboob said to trust them, the steps she took today were for the good of her motherland. Now like the queen of Jhansi, she must hold her mind strong and steady and to move forward.

All instructions were already sent on WhatsApp. When the car stopped in front of the medical store of Ruksha, Sanghamitra got into it. Then the car started moving through the middle of the desert to the right from the main road. There is nothing anywhere, but a mosque can be seen in the distance, the green mosque looks like a coin pouch in the white desert. The car stopped in front of the mosque. Ahmed himself drove the car and brought him. He got down from the car and started banging on the green door of the mosque. After knocking three times, an old man came and opened the door, Ahmed opened the car door and entered the mosque holding Sanghamitra’s hand. At the moment she entered through this door, Sanghamitra closed her eyes and bowed in his heart remembering Mother Sherwabali. She prays to mother for the blessing of her victory. There was no one else in the mosque except Maulvi saheb, Ahmed and she.

It was dark inside the mosque because of regular load shedding at this time. Sanghamitra and Ahmed sit side by side on the carpet on the floor. Sanghamitra’s throat was drying up, she contemplated on queen of Jhansi to stabilize her mind.

Budhdha baba once narrated the story of this queen to her and Mithila. The queen sacrificed her life for the country. How many people get such a privilege? When Sindh country will be established, then many old people of this country like budhdha baba will tell their granddaughters about the sacrifice of the daughters of Sindh like Sanghamitra. Thinking about these things, she tried to control her feelings. Since Mithila’s departure, she has suddenly grown up into quite a matured person. Ever since the day when Mehboob first contacted her after the incident of Mithila and brought her into this path, she wholeheartedly considered herself as an architect of the creation of Sindhu Desh.

Not spending much time Sanghamitra was converted by reading the Kalma. Usually when a Hindu girl is converted like this media used to present there to cover that up, but none was present in Sanghamitra’s case. Everything was happening like a dream, when the process of conversion was over, a boy brought a tray of sweets and water and placed it in front of Sanghamitra. Sanghamitra realizes that the entrance to the cunning plot has been opened before her, now she has to close her eyes and enter the hell. Remembering goddess Tilottama, even Devi Tilottama had to take alternative route to kill the Raktabeeja.

Ahmed himself picked up the plate of sweets and held it in front of Sanghamitra’s face. Sanghamitra let out a sigh and closed his eyes and swallowed up that sweet. After the sweets and water, the atmosphere became more intense and quite. Now it’s seems everyone is waiting and counting down, no one is saying anything. This environment is completely isolated from the outside, no glimpse of the transition of world outside reaches here. Time seems to stand still. Half an hour wait, Sanghamitra’s terrible stomach ache began. When the pain started, she remembered Mehboob’s words, its came true. When stomach pain started, Ahmed took her in the car without any delay with the help of Maulvi Sahib and his assistant. Even then Sanghamitra was in full consciousness. She was taken to the hospital by car. Getting out of the car she found the board of hospital, Sanghamitra realized that what Mehboob had said was true. After let her sit on a bench, Ahmed called someone. Within five minutes two female nurses arrived and took her by the hand and led her into the operating theatre.

After regaining consciousness late that night, Sanghamitra found herself in bed at home. When she regained consciousness, she grumbled with terrible pain in her stomach, hearing her rumbling, her mother came running and said, “take this medicine, this pain will remain for two or three days, then everything will be fine.” Sometime after taking the medicine, the pain in the right side of the stomach subsided, Sanghamitra asked mother, “Mother, what happened to me?”

Mother wipes her tears with her stole and says, “You underwent through an appendicitis operation, some people took you home in the afternoon, they said you were struggling impatiently in front of the drug store due to pain, seeing that some people took you to the hospital, where the doctor operated on you. Not everyone is bad here, some good people are there too, what would have happened to you without them!

Sanghamitra’s voice became numb after hearing her mother, she did not want to stay in this house now that she had caused such a big incident without the knowledge of anyone in her house. If Mehboob is true, then she is now lying with a bomb in her body. Thinking of this, tears came to her eyes, she said to her mother, “mother, give me my mobile phone.” Mother turned the room light off and gave the mobile phone in her hand and lay down next to her. Mother is humming while lying down and gently blowing her hand on Sanghamitra’s head. This is the most peaceful time, but she can’t stay calm at all. Opening the mobile phone, she goes to the WhatsApp archive messages and finds that Mehboob has messaged her, “don’t worry, only your appendix has been removed. There will be someone waiting for you in India, make a new acquaintance with him and start a new life.”    Sanghamitra deletes the messages and breathe out in relief. The hum of mother’s voice in the dark room and the call of the crickets from the bushes outside brought a peaceful sleep in her eyes.

When Sanghamitra was in deep slumber, one of the fifteen Islamic State militants sleeping in a room in an alley in the sweeper locality behind the Tharparkar market started having terrible stomach pain. (Continues)

Click here for Part-I Part-IIPart-III Part-IV Part-V Part-VI Part-VIIPart-VIII Part-IX Part-XPart-XIPart-XIIPart-XIII Part-XIV Part-XV Part-XVIPart-XVIIPart-XVIII Part-XIXPart-XXPart-XXI Part-XXIIPart-XXIII Part-XXIV Part-XXV , Part-XXVI


Debasree Chakraborti - authorDebasree Chakraborti is a renowned novel writer of Bengali language. Based in Kolkata, West Bengal, India, she has done Master’s in Modern History from the Kolkata University, and authored some thirty books, mostly the novels, with historical perspective and themes. Her most recent novel is ‘Maharaja Dahir’ that covers the history of Sindh from 662, the year of first attack on Sindh by the Arab armies till date.

Rajesh Giri - TranslatorRajesh Giri, born in Kolkata, had his early schooling from Kolkata and then from Medinipur—a village in Bengal. He graduated from Calcutta University with Physics and Maths and Master’s from Burdwan University in 2016. Now he is associated with Adhdhyaan educational institution teaching Physics. History enthusiastic Rajesh Giri is particularly interested in the ancient civilization of India and other regions like Egypt, Mesopotamia, and North America. He loves traveling.



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