A Memoir of the day of Freedom at Kaट-कatha

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Has there been an Independence day until the recent one , that I celebrated with such fervour that it really felt like an Independence ? If I go deep down the memory lane to find the answer to this question, then may be my answer would be ‘No’.
Came 15th Aug. 2013, Kat-Katha planned to celebrate its Birthday & being a volunteer I was all excited for the arrangements that we have to do & the wonderful celebration that would follow. When I reached there finally at 10.45am, I saw plenty of volunteers sitting & making this or that for the decorations, even I joined in & took the task of blowing balloons, one of those things I have always found pleasure in,since childhood. Kat-katha never looked so beautiful before & with the positive energy it was emitting in the air that day was truly magical.
The decorations were on place, now it was time for mobilisation or in other words, calling & inviting all the bacchas(kids) & the didis(sisters) for being the part of Kat-katha celebration. Treading all the way at the street, we howled & screamed with loud clapping traversing from one brothel to another & becoming a reason to many confused faces staring at us. All the didis sitting outside were invited with a smile, to celebrate with us, our voices became the loudest of all the bustles of the street & one could easily sense, how this colourless & lifeless place was suddenly bursting with life at that moment. And Me? I was so much a part of those loud invitations that we were making. To so many incidents in life of me trying to break-free from my silent nature, It was the first time when I actually felt my voice matters when I call for freedom at top of my lungs, for the first time it actually felt that there’s nobody who holds you back but you yourself, when you speak with no sense of fear inside, people would definitely listen.
All brothels covered now, after almost 45 mins. of screaming, spreading smiles, clapping & becoming centre of numerous attentions, it was time to head back to our Birthday Home.
Now the Name ‘Kaट-कatha’, newly painted was finally there, shining on the outside wall to let people know where exactly the ‘Hope’ resides in this area. We climbed the stairs still screaming out loud to spread the energy at every corner of our beloved home, just as we had spread it in the street.
Within few minutes we were joined with so many more volunteers & came after them one by one all our beloved Didis & Bacchas, not to forget those few foreign friends as well of ours, who also wanted to be a part of celebration.
In the room inside, all sat with cheerfulness & laughter all around. What started with a simple question making rounds ‘what would you do if you get freedom?’ with all the funny & some inspiring responses, then turned into a musical session, with all together singing those old golden hindi songs making the atmosphere even soothing & also followed was few of the people tapping their feet on energetic Rajasthani numbers.
After 45 mins. or so of all the cheerful singing & dancing session, finally came the favourite moment of the day, especially for the kids, the moment to cut the huge beautiful cake. Everybody kids, didi’s & volunteers gathered around it, waiting for the cake to be cut & sing out loud that old jolly birthday song the Beatles once sang & ever since which became an anthem of every birthday party. The senior-most member present was a didi to whom we requested to cut the cake & the moment she did, everyone burst into joy with all the loudest voices of kids, the birthday anthem just got merrier. Cake served, home-made Teas & sandwiches also followed, everybody cheering having a hearty time.
Now it was time to rejoice over the dance performance that our ever talented bacchas prepared. It was all but so fun & wonderful to see them enjoying themselves dancing, even if not in sync at times, but then who cared, there innocent smiling faces were enough a reason to make us all feel truly blissful & in a while the floor became a ‘discotheque’ with everybody enjoying tapping their feet along with kids. The funny thing is that the speakers were quite small with the sound coming not so loud & yet everyone danced as if sound wasn’t actually a bar to express the joy that was running amok inside everybody at that moment, all we needed was a song of freedom in our own hearts & that I think was loud enough. Giving ourselves a break now, all now sat to enjoy the ever delicious 2 minutes noodles, yes it was Maggi time, which few of the volunteers had dedicatedly & lovingly cooked for all. And to be honest it actually was the best Maggi I ever had, for which I would give the credits to that very special ingredient called ‘Love’, which was mixed perfectly.
Now it was about 6pm & somewhere I was wishing that the moment simply pauses there, the wonderful chit-chats never ceases, the celebrations continue till eternity. The bacchas & didis started departing now one by one & slowly silence started descending our home. But still who were left behind were few bacchas & volunteers. Gitanjali suggested to end the beautiful day of celebration by praying & meditating in silence. All sat in the inner room, with lights all off & beautiful meditative scherzo playing on speakers. Our eyes closed now permitting the soothing music to touch the soul through ears. At that very moment, it took a while for me to be transported in some kind of ‘trance’, with all the flashbacks of the beautiful day crossing my mind as some kaleidoscopic images.
I think I was smiling at that moment, a smile with no purpose at all, which you may be not aware of, but it’s there on your face & when you suddenly feel its presence, then you know it from inside that you are finally at Peace, you have set your mind free of all boundaries, all rules & everything that has ever held you back.
“The moment you feel YOU ARE INFINITE”….
HARDIK GAURAV
Blog is here🙂

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