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Punyasloke Bose



Punyasloke Bose


Of Wish and Promise

Of Wish and Promise

7 mins 251 7 mins 251

It's very difficult to track what all goes on in the mind of a dying person. Such was the state of Gouri when she was faced with the dilemma of facing her dying friend Uma. Gouri and Uma were childhood friends and nothing could ever separate them. Even after marriage they had their in law's house in the same neighbourhood. During their childhood they had promised each other that their children would marry each other on growing up if they were a boy and a girl and through them their friendship would remain immortal. At the death bed Uma called Gouri and gave her a gold necklace and asked her to call Uma's daughter Mohor. Uma did what she was biden to honour a dying person 's last wish. Uma then blessed Mohor with the necklace and called her son Shivam and blessed him also. She wished in front of Gouri that the two betrothed would marry each other on growing up. This was her last wish.

In between many years had elapsed . Uma had passed away. Her father in law considered her to be lucky but after her death he refused to accept it and shifted his full household to the metropolis. Uma's family was into the confectionery business and they had been doing quite well. But Uma's death had shattered it all. After her death the Ghosh household shifted and started their confectionery business afresh.

The senior Ghosh considered that the dead Uma had been keeping her watchful glare over the families fate and had been showering them with blessings. Because in a few years their business had shot up many times. The turnover was very healthy year on year.

But Uma's friend Gouri had not faced such good fortune. Gouri's family was also one of confectioners but her husband could not do justice to the business. He had taken on debt and mostly remained sick. Then one day suddenly he passed away leaving behind his wife Gouri, daughter Mohor and a little son Tapesh.

Gouri had regularly kept in touch with Uma's family specially her mother in law and father in law who were very loving towards her and fond of her. When they heard of the tragedy that had befallen on Gouri, Uma's father and mother in law both beckoned her to come and stay with them and start life anew. Initially hesitant but when they were calling her fervently then she sold her sweet shop to settle the debt and balance she kept the money safely for Mohor's marriage.

At the Ghosh household Gouri started life once again. She was spell bound with the success now being enjoyed by the Ghosh family. Their lifestyle had changed and many had forgotten their earlier humble beginngs. Only the patriarch and his wife were not affected by the affluence. Only they were very warm towards Gouri and family otherwise the rest were very cold and offensive in their behavior. But Mohor was a very talkative and energetic creature and was a live wire in the household which made her very attractive to the kids in the Ghosh family. Even her brother Tapesh was very welcome due to his chirpiness. The elder Ghosh was not aware of the wish kept by her daughter in law Uma to her friend Gouri. Mohor's betrothed Shivam had also now grown and become highly educated and had changed into a well heeled gentleman. Whereas Mohor had still remained a rustic village girl with a simple vernacular school education. In no way they could now be matched with each other as husband and wife. Only Gouri knew of the dying Uma's wish and knew she had to keep the promise given to her. 

Incidentally Gouri was nursing a complex disease and no one got to know about it specially her daughter Mohor from whom she kept very guarded. Her Tapesh was the only one who knew because he had to do his mother's nursing when her pain arose. 

However the Ghosh patriarch got the wind of the disease and his grandson Shivam also got to know of it. The Ghosh elder took upon himself the responsibility of treating Gouri because he loved her as his daughter. Gouri doubted that her disease was a life threatening one and one day she confided the secret blessings done by Uma to Shivam and Mohor as of future husband and wife and the Ghosh elderly husband and wife duo listened in stunned silence. She returned the blessed necklace to them. The senior duo thoroughly believed in Gouri's story. Shivam accidently overheard the conversation. He was deeply possessive about his mother although she was now dead. He knew that his mother had died due to bad treatment meted out by his father as a result Shivam never had a good relationship with his father. But he could not accept Mohor as his future wife however he was attached to his mother and her thoughts. Also Shivam was in a relationship with a girl named Teesta. Recently Teesta who was from a rich family had proposed to Shivam but he had asked Teesta to not hurry up things. Shivam did not believe in the institution of marriage but preferred an open relationship. Teesta was hence kept waiting but Shivam was very warm towards her. So now when the talk of marriage arose Shivam quickly spoke to his grandfather alone and refused to marry Mohor although he was very polite in his refusal because his grandfather was very dear to him and didn't want to hurt him anyhow. 

Now grandfather Ghosh was in a dilemma. He loved his daughter in law Uma very much and her friend Gouri now was equally dear. Mohor being Gouri's daughter was his personal favourite what with her behaviour and ready presence of mind. So he wanted that Mohor should become a permanent resident of this household on the strength of her marriage to any one of the Ghosh scion even if the betrothed Shivam didn't marry her. Shivam 's uncle suggested we could marry off Kunal with Mohor. Kunal was Uma's adopted son. Uma as said earlier was a big Hearted kind lady and she was a benefactor to many a soul. Kunal was one such. Kunal' s parents had died leaving behind him still as a toddler. Uma was a distant relative to the deceased couple. So if she didn't take Kunal under her custody, he would be washed away under the cruel waves of life. But Kunal though coming under the kind tutelage of Uma was subjected to lot of cruelty by Uma's husband who absolutely despised him. But Kunal continued under the shelter of the Ghosh family and brought himself up the hard way. He worked in the confectionery business and became the key person in their business. Kunal was therefore approached by the grandfather and apprised of the family 's desire that he should marry Mohor. Kunal reacted indifferently saying that he had no independent say in the matter. He said that without the Ghosh family standing behind him like a strong pillar, he would have been washed away long ago. So he had no desire of his own other than following the family 's desire. 

Now in the intervening period till the marriage was solemnised Kunal had a change in his thoughts due to certain untoward incidents where he was direly humiliated by his foster father, Uma's husband. So during the marriage ceremony Kunal walked away from the marriage as a mark of protest. 

Seeing her daughter being rejected at the marriage altar, Mohor 's mother Gouri reacted agitatedly. In the Hindu tradition a bride not being able to complete the marriage ceremony is considered an inauspicious being. She screamed in reaction shouting her daughter could not become a' lagnabhrastha' or a product of an inauspicious marriage. Because giving marriage to such women in future becomes very difficult almost like impossible. 

The Ghosh patriarch couldn't bear such high voltage drama at his advanced age and suffered a massive heart attack. 

There was a lot of commotion in the household. Shivam was the only one who could act in a cool mind and arranged for immediate medical attention for his grandfather. He had a sister Priya who seeing the unfold of unfortunate developments could not help but chide her brother Shivam. Priya reminded Shivam that if he deeply loved and respected their mother, then Shivam must honour his mother's wish and help keep the promise made by Mohor's mother Gouri. And that would be the only medicine for their ailing grandfather. Shivam's grandfather revived in a few days and soon would return home and his return to his original self primarily became depended solely on what Shivam decided. But Shivam remained entrapped in the quagmire of his mother's wish and the promise made to her by another woman. 

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