Trisha was just six years old.That was the last day in the school.It gets closed for three weeks.She was very happy.Her mom had agreed to send her to her brother’s house for two or three days.They had a boy of her age for Trisha to play with.Her mom rang up her brother to take the girl from her school that ended at 1pm as she would be accompanying her husband to Delhi by 10 am flight to see his ailing father.She packed a bag with dresses for two days and gave her with lunch box.She left a message again with her brother to take Trisha from school.She impressed on Trisha that her uncle or aunt would come to pick her up and on no account she should leave with anyone else.
It was 1pm and as the school bell rang all the children came out merrily dancing and prancing.The durwan at the gate let out the children carefully one by one after seeing the guardian who came to pick the children.He knew all of them.Some of the children whose parents were generally late were playing hide and seek inside the class room.Trisha also joined them.Some hid behind the doors, some behind the benches and some in the corridor.Trisha got into an empty almirah and closed the door .It was a big almirah.She lied down waiting for others to discover her but sadly she fell asleep.None of the other children noticed her absence and left the school when their parents came. The durwan around 4pm went around all the classes shutting the almirah doors securely, switching off the lights and fans.He didn’t open the almirah where Trisha was sleeping when he secured it.The doors of school building and the outside gate were closed and everyone left.
It was 5pm when Trisha woke up.It was pitch dark inside and she was profusely sweating.She could see nothing.She cried afraid of darkness and did not realise where she was.She started crying loudly and punching the doors with her soft hand.She felt an insect,may be a cockroach,moving on her.She was scared and screamed in fright.No one noticed her bag kept inside her bench.A kitten managed to enter the room through a partially open window and meowed continuosly as it heard the noise in the almirah.The girl was crying uncontrollably repeatedly calling “Amma ,amma, I am afraid..Please come immediately and take me. It is very dark here.Some insect is biting me,amma, amma” ..She was hungry too.Tired by endless crying she again fell asleep.
Trisha’s uncle had told his wife to pick the girl and again reminded her before he left for office.He was leaving for Dhanbad that day by evening train.That lady had totally forgotten about Trisha when she got a message that her dad had a massive heart attack and was in hospital.She had rushed there to be by the side of her mom.His condition was alarming.Her son was taken care of by her neighbours.
It was around 9pm when Trisha’s mom rang her brother’s house and no one picked the phone.She tried several times before contacting her brother on mobile.He became worried when he heard her anxious concern about Trisha.He assured her that she would call her after talking to his wife.He rang up his neighbour and found that his wife had gone to the hospital around noon and that his son was with them.It was 10pm by the time he could reach his wife in the hospital and learnt to his shock that she had totally forgotten about picking Trisha in the melee.He told her to immediately rush to the school and try to trace the child.That lady with her brother left their dying dad in the hospital and rushed to school.She realised the enormity of her lapse and cried bitterly praying to all gods to keep the girl safe and secure.
It was 11pm when the aunt and her brother stared at the closed doors of the school.The aunt felt might be some parents of the girl’s friend or a teacher or Headmistress would have taken the unattended child with them.Someone offered to jump the door and look around the school..He came back saying that it was all dark and there was only a kitten mewoing nonstop.The hunt for the headmistress and the durwan took time.No one suspected that the girl would be left behind in the school.Even police help was sought.It was only in the morning around 5am they could trace the durwan in his house.He said that he cannot remember the girl unless he saw her.He added that he had checked all rooms before he locked the building.Nevertheless the police insisted on seeing the school building.
They opened and went room after room found none till they went last to the rear room which was also empty.The kitten was still meowing standing by the side of the almirah.A doubt arose in the mind of a policeman who had its door opened.Inside Trisha was lying in crouched position unconscious.She was rushed to the hospital and first aid given.Trisha’s parents airdashed as also the brother from Dhanbad.
When Trisha came home after a day in the hospital, she found to her great glee a new mate to give her company.It was the kitten that stood by her without moving away till she was rescued from her predicament.