Saturday, December 17

A Girl On The Platform

New Delhi Railway Station (NDLS)

Date: 30th Nov 2011

Time: 2 Afternoon!!!

I and my wife were sitting on chairs in New Delhi Railway Station waiting for train to arrive on Platform No.2. Very tired, we were silent and deep into our thoughts ignoring the commotion and loudness around us in the busy station.

A 10 year girl stopped by my side and looked at me. She was thin, pale at face, covered with a torn shawl.  She held a 20 rupee note firmly in her small left fist to protect herself from robbery.

There was fear in her voice and anticipation to seek help in eyes. Tears ran down her cheeks in a desperate attempt to touch the dried up lips.

She shook my hand and asked,”Bhaiya, Saharanpur ko gaadi kounse platform se jaati hai?” (Train to Saharanpur departs from which platform?)

Her soft voice was loud enough to beat the station noise and wake me up from day dreaming.
I replied back, “malum nahi!!!” (I don’t know!!!) and she left without saying anything.
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My wife observed, she was asking the same question from every other person her footsteps took her. She waved and called her back. She raced back to the place we were sitting.

“What’s your name?” my wife asked.

Chandni came her reply.

“Where are you coming from Chandni? Where is your parent? Why do you want to go to Saharanpur platform?” a volley of questions my wife enquired from the little kid.

She was brought to Delhi by someone she never met before in life. Her father is dead and she was forced to leave Saharanpur so she ran from the place where she was put up in Delhi and came to the station to go back to Saharanpur, was her reply.

We were shocked. She further added that she knows how to read and write as she’s in her fifth standard and is youngest in the house of 4 siblings: 3 girls and 1 boy.

She broke down as she was anxious to go back to Saharanpur.

Aapke paas vaapis jaane ka ticket hai Chandni?” (Do you have a ticket for Saharanpur train, Chandni?) I enquired and a person sitting to my right answered, “bachchi hai sahab, TT nahi puchega ticket ka aur jaane dega!!!” (She’s a minor, so TT will not ask her for the ticket and will let her go!!!)

Bhookh lagi hai, kuch khaana hai?” (Do you want anything to eat; shall I get you something?) I asked. But she had one answer to all the queries, “mujhe platform number bata do, mujhe Saharanpur ki train pakadni hai” (please tell me which platform number for Saharanpur train).

Isolation and fear overtook her hunger and she was colder from within than from the skin on that winter day.

I made her sit on my seat and told, “Chandni, yahaan rehna didi ke paas. Main platform ka pata karke aata hoon” (Chandni, Sit here with didi and wait for me to come back with platform details). She nodded in affirmation.

It took me 10 minutes to get back to the place where I left them.

She was happy to know that the train will leave from platform 7 in another 30 minutes. I decided to give her money but she refused and showed me the wet 20 rupee note she held in her hand.

I escorted her till platform 7.

I asked her to make a call at home saying that she’s fine and will be coming home soon but the poor child was too young to memorize numbers. Before she could board the train, I bought her chocolate biscuits and snacks for the journey. She hesitated but the hunger made her reach out and take the stuff.

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Happiness started to show signs on her but same time, fear never retreated.

I once again alerted her with the rule book of “things you must remember while travelling alone”.

I blessed her and she smiled back to say bye.

I got back to the place my wife was. We discussed about this incident for a while before we lost words to speak any further. We both just hoped that Chandni should safely reach her place, her home as early as possible.

Epilogue:

This incident left so many things unsaid. It may happen with anyone at any time. We were without words for rest of our journey. My wife really wished if we were in a position today wherein we could have thought of adopting the child and protect her childhood but it was hoping against the hope.

I really wished children like Chandni do not lose their innocence and hoped that they are not let into wrong hands and made to do things they are really not supposed to do.

Thanks for reading this and I hope if you come across any such incident in your life, be good to kids and make sure you comfort them whatever way possible. Remember they are not as blessed as we were during our childhood. 

22 comments:

  1. What you did was beautiful.... I too shall pray that she reaches back safely...

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  2. I pray for Chandini, she reaches safely to sahranpur.

    We all come across many situations, but most of the times we are not in a postion to help them enough to satisfy our concious and their need. Really I to sometimes get touched by this type of situations..

    so nice of you people..

    www.readitt.in (the e magazine)

    ReplyDelete
  3. @ Santa,

    thanks .. what i did was not even 1% but all out of humbleness to be very honest ..

    thanks for dropping by ..

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  4. @ Readitt,

    i completely agree with you...

    sometimes, our conscious says us so many things but some strange factors always come in between..

    glad to see your comment here ..

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  5. अजब से जीवन के अजब हैं रूप,उस नन्ही परी के लिए आपने जो किया,लोग उतना भी नहीं करते। उसकी सलामती की दुआ के साथ आपको हमारा सादर सलाम।

    ReplyDelete
  6. thankyou indu ji,

    arrey nahi maine jo kiya woh kuch nahi tha ..

    agar hum sab thoda thoda milkar savaarne ki koshish karein toh bahut kuch kar sakte hai...

    regards
    rahul

    ReplyDelete
  7. very touching incident.and I hope there are more people like you..many people wish to do but how many are able to do..and this makes lot of difference...

    ReplyDelete
  8. thank you Renu for dropping by ..

    i don't know but i believe if you get a chance to do something for someone unprivileged .. do it with open arms!!!

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  9. hope she reached home safely and lives rest of her life without any fear. good job dude.

    ReplyDelete
  10. What you did was commendable. I hope she reached home safe!

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  11. @ Rachana

    thank you .. lets hope that she's safe with her family now ..

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  12. she was blessed to have met both of you.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Nice job Rahul...god bless us all for dng good things

    ReplyDelete
  14. @ magiceye

    thank you .. it was lovely having you here!!!

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  15. @ Burhan

    thank you for visiting ..

    and i really hope that god give us enough to help underprivildged souls...

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  16. Generally when we encounter such situations, people just want money from us. That makes it harder for us to help anyone in distress. But in this case, this was obviously not the case as the girl did not accept any money. I am so glad that you did help her.

    Destination Infinity

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  17. @ DI

    thank you for dropping by and for such nice words...

    i truly wanted to adopt her but the not-so-established-side of mine stopped me from expressing my feelings for the child...

    regards
    CA

    ReplyDelete
  18. excellent work and well done
    not many would od that ..


    Bikram's

    ReplyDelete
  19. @ Bikram,

    thank you .. for such nice words..

    hey wish you and all other blogger friends a very happy new year and prosperity ahead!!!

    regards
    rahul

    ReplyDelete
  20. god bless you.you guys are really very sweet souls

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. god bless the young girl and what we did was nothing!

      thank you for dropping by Ma'm...

      Delete

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