These are mostly hopeless farmers or labourers who have difficulty to get job or can’t earn well in our region. Our Gangetic planes have lush green fields and fertile lands. But irony is that the agricultural produce is just sufficient to feed the people and sell the part of it to buy the family needs. Then there comes nature’s fury in the form of flood.
Let me adumbrate on the reality behind this situation, which discourages the need of looking into the real problem, with an incident. Last year on the occasion of cultural night on the eve of Independence day, my cultural group got enough permission to present a drama titled as “Patua” from the program managing authorities. Patua or Patsan is the local name of the Jute fibre. Based on the local farmers’ problems, this theatrical theme was conceived by us. In the direction of my mother, it was well shaped and an effective presentation was prepared with enough practice. It was our surprise that while doing rehearsal, at the end, at my pathetic cry, the neighbours used to sneak through the window with sympathy. On the actual performance evening, with my enthusiastic theatrical team, we reached the auditorium at before time itself. At the spot, we were informed that due to time constraint, our drama was cancelled off ! We were shocked on this coercion.
Once permitted with the theme of drama on pen and paper, and next it was just cancelled. Behind the theatre, the reliable sources told us that, the invitees are the big businessmen of the town. My team’s voice representing the grass root farmers was looked askance, since the officials knew about the theme, the performing group and its malefic effects on the respected delegates. The other dance programs along with some patriotic songs’ dramatic performances were performed as usual to entertain them and make a ballyhoo of patriotic feelings.
The significant business in our town depends on the business of Jute fibre too. Once upon a time the fibre of Jute used to give back good return. The price given to farmers used to be pretty high and the young man might have sold a bundle of Jute and return home back with a new bicycle. After popularity of plastic, truly the prices of jute has fallen but not that much that the same fiber gives in return only the token sum of money which in the most cases gives back only the investment. In this cultivation, the bonuses are the Senthi (the woody stem of Jute plants) and the leguminous nitrogen fixed in the soil by the roots. This nitrogen fixed is helpful to grow the next crop of paddy. For the helpless small farmers the thought of considerable profit is out of thought.
Even knowing all these, every agrestic migrant like to touch the moon in the distant land without uttering a single word, mesmerizes me.