Saturday, August 13, 2011

Payback

I am not a devout person. I never went to temples nor made obeisance to god men. I am not an atheist though. I just felt there was some power much beyond us to keep the sun and moon to rise without fail, the planets not falling or colliding with each other and the seas kept restrained within their shores. But my acknowledgement of this power beyond did not however inhibit me from many distasteful things that I indulged in. You see I am a small fry in politics but with vaulting ambitions to make it big. I had the necessary mental makeup. I was ruthless, cunning, ambitious, and greedy. I had all the vices that a man in good health can possibly have. I had hitched myself to a rising star in a political party and was slowly growing in importance.
As ill luck would have it, the leader to whom I had linked my fortune and future had a serious setback when he was caught in a big murder case and put behind bars. Luckily I was out of the suspect list though I had a minor role as his sidekick. His fall from grace of the opportunistic higher-ups and my identification with him were threatening my future and even my livelihood. It was then I heard of this god man who was making headlines and attracting a huge following of thousands to his abode. I heard if one is lucky enough to get an audience with him, he had the panacea for all the troubles. Stories abounded about how he cured chronic ailments given up by doctors, restored broken family relationships by a mere benediction, secured high positions, wealth, victory in difficult tasks and what not. I too wished to meet him and have my doubts resolved whether I should change loyalties or stick with the one who has caught himself in deep trouble. A wrong move may hurt me and my future considerably. I needed a steady flow of money.
With much effort, I was ushered to his august presence in the incense filled room. Clad in ochre robe with magnetic eyes and a winsome smile, he evoked an instant awe. After I prostrated full length and made my obeisance, he said in a soft voice that was almost a whisper”I know your problems. Patience is a virtue that helps. Have this to protect you” he said as he handed over a small Ganesh idol in gold that he contrived out of thin air by just waving his hand.
Wonder struck I looked at the idol that was shining in my hand and was quickly assessing mentally its weight and value. As if he read my mind he said ‘Yes it is pure gold. If you need quick results within a fortnight you must spend a couple of lakhs for doing special puja and for the silver amulet. Tomorrow is most auspicious and we can have it done, if you so wish.”
The next moment I was sort of dismissed and led outside by his disciples as a new devotee with his family entered the room. My attempts to catch his eyes were futile as thereafter he totally ignored my presence.
The same night I mustered two and half lakhs rupees from a money lender at usurious rate. I knew how to tackle these men. The money given to the god man, I was asked to come the next day to collect the amulet. I could not meet the god man again but was given an amulet to wear by his office. I could not go home as I had some paid job to evict a recalcitrant tenant from a house in the neighboring town. There was a sense of confidence in my steps after I wore the amulet till a week later I was tipped by my friend to stay away and that police were visiting my house daily to nab me in connection with the murder. I was alarmed and involuntarily felt the amulet I was wearing on my right arm and also ran my fingers on the Ganesh idol that I carried always. Stung by a doubt at the adverse turn of events, I rushed to a goldsmith and found the Ganesh idol was made of cheap brass. I knew I was duped and rushed to the God man’s place only to find from a distance a large number of policemen standing outside.
It was then I felt an arm on my shoulder. Taken aback I turned to see the moneylender breathing on my neck with a policeman in tow.

15 comments:

  1. Very interesting..! It looked more like a page from a diary.. fiction written like fact.. bravo!

    ReplyDelete
  2. That was a fast track for me - kind of suffocating not knowing how it was going to end. Catching my breath finally...

    As always an interesting write up.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is typically Indian… praying to God in the silence of the heart or even giving arms n donations for something good to happen to us is understandable but approaching such God-men, women is totally inexplicable …despite the fact that there is news of frauds in religious robes doing the robbery almost everyday…hmmm unfortunate..!

    Nice story…rather good lesson for everyone..

    ReplyDelete
  4. Very interesting! As usual, the narration is catchy!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Good One! Fast paced. Keep Writing

    ReplyDelete
  6. that was very nice.. the narrative was superb..

    ReplyDelete
  7. happy independence day... :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Nothing is enough on this earth for greedy people.. except such a lesson :-)

    ReplyDelete
  9. Different from the other stories. Nice.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Very much absorbing...Love the way you create..

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is a new style I think. I have not seen it earlier in your writing. I liked the message!

    ReplyDelete