Joy in the little things of Life!!

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Potter, Writer, Blogger, Quiller, Avid Reader, Chatter Box, Traveller, Foodie, photo crazy, Orchid lover, FB addict, and an enthusiast.... I work on extremes... You'll either find me laughing insanely or discussing something seriously serious.... I suffer from a laughter disorder...I am a lover of arts and crafts and anything that's colorful, bright and beautiful which includes my plants and my little lovely birdies... I am a mad friend, an insane daughter, a crazy wife and an unconventional sister... I choose to love, laugh and live!! My smile is contagious....So be careful :)

Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Woman on Platform Number 10!

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 38; the thirty-eighth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. The theme for the month is "The Woman on Platform Number 10"

It was a wintry November night in Mumbai. With her daughter’s tiny hands clasped firmly in her own, she waited patiently on the busiest platform of the CST railway station. The train was scheduled to arrive at 10:15 PM. She was returning from her younger sister’s engagement. The wedding was scheduled for December – just a month away. Her sister would soon fly off to Dubai with her husband. She cringed at the thought – how time flies! Fond memories of their childhood flashed unwittingly in her mind. But she knew as well as the next person, just how transient life is.Nothing stays forever. Sometimes, "Truth is Stranger than Fiction".

Just then she realized that her daughter had slipped away. The woman turned to find that her daughter had busied herself with some other children on the busy platform. How easy it is for children to befriend others, she thought to herself. She looked at her daughter and was mesmerized by her smile. The colored bangles on her little hands were like vibrant spring flowers. Clad in her favorite red lehenga and a green dupatta, the little child was angelic. Like a bright ray of sunshine, she had come down from the heavens, only to waltz into her mother’s heart. Ah! The joys of mother hood, the woman thought to herself.

She adored her daughter more than anything in the world. One day when her daughter would grow up to be a beautiful woman. She would find the man of her dreams and with the wind beneath her wings, she would fly off, to make a tidy little nest of her own. A little tear welled up in the woman’s eyes. She smiled at the thought. Even as the cold winter winds swept across Mumbai, she was warm inside.

Amidst all the mixed feelings teasing her heart, she impatiently glanced at her watch. “10:10 PM”, it proudly confirmed. She glanced up at the indicator that stood solemnly still in the middle of the platform, helping several commuters with their travel time. Hundreds of people thronging through the concrete jungles of Mumbai, were now a part of the station – just like hers. She peeped on the left side of the platform looking for any traces of the train. But there were none. The indicator display said that there were still 5 minutes to go for the train to arrive. “Mumbai trains”, she sighed.

Just as she was about to recline on one of the shoddily maintained wooden platform , she felt unnerved. And just then they walked past her – it was a sight that would remain imprinted on her brain forever. They entered the platform, unnoticed and disregarded by the tired crowds. But she saw them, each one of them. The dreadful, hungry looks on their faces sent shivers up her spine. Their cruel eyes pierced her very soul. A deep fear ran through every nerve, every tissue, every muscle and every bone in her body. She counted seven of the brutes, mentally. Their intentions were clearly far from noble, and yet, nothing could have prepared the hoardes for what was to follow.It happened in a millisecond. They began shooting and the first bullet sped through the air, only to pierce a young boy’s chest. A woman was shot next and she fell face forward, straight onto the dirty railway tracks. As the volley of bullets continued, the sleepy platform came to life, only to breathe its last.

The sounds of the gunshot frightened the children who were playing with the woman’s daughter. Ing with fear, her daughter ran towards her. But before she could get her child to a safe place, a bullet came screaming through the air. It shot right through her spinal cord. He fell where he stood, probably killed instantaneously. 

“Ammi!!!” was all that the child could say, before collapsing into a pool of blood rapidly forming under her.

“ZEBA!!!” the woman cried, rushing to gather her bleeding child into her arms. 

Another bullet came zinging by and she felt herself falling on to the tracks, where many bodies now lay strewn. As her vision blurred and Zeba disappeared into the blackness, the sickening realization dawned on her: She had failed to reach her daughter. Her beloved Zeba had gone back to Allah.

Many lay with her - still, motionless, frozen. The platform had transformed into one big corpse, with blood oozing through every pore. CST – a veritable symbol of Mumbai, had become a paradigm of brutality. A part of the insomniac city, was finally asleep.

“Zeba”, the woman whispered several times still clutching hope to her breast that her daughter was by some miracle, still alive. But amidst the agonizing cries of pain, the world failed to hear her. “Zeba, my child,” she said, as she drifted into unconsciousness for the last time.

That fateful night changed the lives of many on Platform No. 10.

It left a mother scarred forever.

I am Zeba’s mother. I am “The Woman on Platform Number 10”.

This is a tribute to all the victims of 26/11, a day that witnessed brutal killing of innocent people in the name of  - God!

The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. Introduced By: Facebook, Participation Count: 1