Wednesday, 15 October 2014

My short story 'The Hand, the Elephant and the Lotus' (published by Writers Asylum, 7 Oct 2014)

My latest short story (fiction) 'The Hand, the Elephant and the Lotus' has been published by Writers Asylum. 
Synopsis of the story: The story narrates how the 1996 Assembly Election in Assam affected a few lives. 

An excerpt: 
"For many years I heard Father and the other men and women in the family talk only about the Elephant and the Hand, criticizing the Hand when it was in power and speculating the chances of the Elephant coming to power in the next election; and then criticizing the Elephant when it finally came to power, at how it had fallen flat on its promises. But in 1996, before the Assembly election happened, there were talks about how disappointing both these parties were and that only a radical change could rescue Assam. Father now spoke about the Lotus as the messianic political party that could cleanse the Bangladeshi epidemic and save “us” from the “larger goal” of turning Assam into an Islamic state and merging it with Bangladesh. To this, people like Rehmankhura, father’s childhood friend who now lived close to our house in Guwahati, would not really know what to say. His family had moved over from Bangladesh, then East Pakistan, when the partition had happened. Even during those times, as it is now, the border between Assam and Bangladesh was porous. In fact, there was no Bangladesh, there was no Assam. It was one huge land where people of all religious faiths, castes and tribes lived. So at times like this when Father spoke about the need for a Hindutvaregime because soon “our” people “would be reduced to a minority position” by the “Moosolmaan”, unmindful of Rehman khura’s presence in the gathering, he would keep quiet. All these years of friendship and it seemed Father never registered the fact that Rehman khura was but a “Moosolmaan”."

Read the rest of it at http://www.writersasylum.in/2014/10/fiction/the-hand-the-elephant-and-the-lotus/

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