Anand Weds Aditi
Anand Weds Aditi5 mins 327 5 mins 327
I was back home after a month. Tired and sleepy I lay on the couch just when my eyes fell on a wedding card. It was of my sister’s friend, Aditi Didi. Aditi Didi has been very close to my sister since school days. She is too soft spoken, gentle and kind hearted. And she was just twenty-three. She was getting married to Anand bhaiya, again, Didi’s school senior. Bhaiya was not that old. Mom might have forgotten to inform me regarding their marriage.
On asking mom, I got to know that their marriage has been fixed some 15 days before and they do not even know each other properly. Aditi Didi has been working in the secretariat and Anand bhaiya in the Indian army. My heart thumped. I am not against these but thinking of a girl being the wife of an army officer makes me very restless. I can feel the sacrifices, the courage and the boldness one needs to have to be an army officer’s wife. I remember I could not sleep for nights after hearing Nikita Kaul’s speech for her martyred husband Major Vibhuti.
These tall, olive green dressed men, displaying tremendous acts of values in unexpected situations are not mere soldiers of the nation. They are the pride of every Indian soul. They stay away from their families, guarding the nation across various extreme weather and critical ground conditions.
Three days later the marriage took place. I got to know this from the gossips that apparently bhaiya was getting old and was on duty most of the time. So, getting him married will be a happy moment in his life so that he can get some love from his wife as well. Ten to fifteen days after his marriage, the notice for call came and he had to leave the next day. An army officer's wife, no doubt bids a good-bye to her husband with a bold heart but somewhere inside lies the fear of the chances of her husband not returning home. The day when Anand bhaiya left for duty, Aditi Didi did the same. She was smiling till the end moment until bhaiya turned back to have a glimpse of her. Now death is uncertain and the uncertainty increases if you are going to the battle field. Just as Didi had this fear of losing bhaiya, he too had the same fear. That night, aunty asked both of us to stay back at their place so that Didi does not feel alone. She cried and cried like hell. It felt like just yesterday she was getting married and today she is sending bhaiya to the battle field by helping him to get ready with his uniform and his bags.
I was back to hostel after a couple of days. Getting back to my workplace makes me forget everything about my hometown. I had totally forgotten about Aditi Didi and even did not ask mom about her. Finally, out of blue mom asked me if I had talked to her and conveyed me the good news that she is pregnant. I was over-whelmed. Not for me being a maasi, but for bhaiya being a father. The thoughts kept on revolving my mind regarding his happiness when he would get to know this. We never get to know when he would return because sometimes holidays are cancelled. Even the battlefields do not have proper network connection.
Bhaiya was back home when it was eight months to her pregnancy. I was excited and thus kept asking mom everyday what and how the situation was. Finally, I had a vacation and was at home when she had her labor pains. She was taken to the nearest hospital where she delivered a baby boy. Bhaiya got an emergency call regarding the cancellation of his vacations. He had to leave in an hour. Unfortunately, he did not get a chance to see his son’s face.
Before leaving, we all could see that reluctant face of bhaiya. Everyone could get to know that he was not at all interested to leave his wife and his new born baby. But when motherland calls, family becomes the second priority. Unlike every time, Didi did not have any fear in her mind that bhaiya was going for an emergency and will be fighting with the terrorists. She was super confident that he would return back. Couple of days later, I was at their house when a phone call came. Aunty took the call and suddenly fainted. When she regained her senses, she could not speak anything but cry. The news of Anand bhaiya being no more was spreading like an epidemic. Didi seemed to have turned out to be a doll after receiving the news. Few days later, one autumn afternoon, there was a huge crowd before bhaiya’s house. The body of Anand bhaiya came wrapped in the national flag inside a wooden coffin. Opening the coffin, we could see the same smiling face of bhaiya. Nothing other than the cotton plunged to his ears and nose proved that he was dead. His face seemed like he would just wake up to smile and take his son in his hands and play with him for long and long hours. But he did not get up. He was taken for the last honor and then his cremation would take place. Aditi Didi was asked to present her speech for bhaiya. While she was speaking, tears rolled down her fair cheeks. Her voice broke often still she continued. The speech ended with a promise of Didi making her son an army officer and a loud outburst of tears. While she was speaking, the entire video displaying the speech of Nikkita Kaul came before my eyes. We watched and before our eyes the entire body of Anand bhaiya was burned down into ashes. Thus, one life ended before seeing and enjoying the world, fighting for the nation. The other lives did not stop but moved on trying to fulfill the promises that they made to bhaiya.