Somashis Gupta calls up Biswajit Jha after he finds a news article. Over the discussion he finds out about the ‘to be published’ book by Biswajit
I was seated at the breakfast table flipping through my collection of old news paper cuttings, which I am in a habit of preserving for many years. Some of my readers may argue on this habit as these days information is available on Google. Well, it is true that online search engines answer almost anything, but surely not all. To sight an example, I read about a German Lady, the other day, who visited Darjeeling sometime in 1990. She has been staying in Darjeeling since then due to her immense love for the street dogs of the town. She feeds them every day and also ensures they are not cold by providing them with blankets. She is popularly called ‘Kutta mai’ by the localities.
Now coming back to our story, as I was flipping through the pages, I found a report of a Durga Puja which was held in China a few years back. It itself was an interesting news and when I found the name of the priest who performed the rituals, I was even more enthralled. The priest was none other than Biswajit Jha, whom I met recently and narrated the incident under the title ‘The Compassionate Chronicler’. This news paper report swiped my memory back to my last interaction with the man. I remember he said ‘Do read my next book which will be published next year’….
By 8 o’ clock that morning, after sipping the last of my Makaibari, I fetched my phone and called Biswajit.
“Good Morning, I was wondering what your next book is” I asked.
“Good Morning. Well it is a fiction based on my idea of life.” replied he.
“Your Idea of life? Huh! This sounds interesting. So what is your idea of life?” I was curious.
“You see our lives are exactly how we perceive it. So, the right perspective about life is the most important aspect. But mostly people don’t lead a happy and fulfilled life despite becoming successful.”
“I cannot agree to that” said I. I wanted to understand more from him “after-all with success, you earn money, and with money you can buy happiness, isn’t it?”
“You can buy comfort, but not peace and happiness. That my friend comes only with peace.”
This reply kept me silent for a while as I could not deny this fact. Biswajit continued “I have seen many people who have money, properties, bungalow, etc. but are cut-off from their roots and live a miserable life with no peace or happiness. But by the time they realize the same, it is too late for them to change the course of their lives. My next story is all about that.”
“Ah! It does make sense, so what inspired you to pick up this interesting topic?” asked I.
“You see, in 2013, at the age of 32, a strange void crept deep within me despite having earned a name for myself as a journalist and leading a fun-filled life. I got a certain call which told me to quit my job, leave the metro city, and engage myself with some positive work. I left Delhi to return to my roots with the sincere intention of devoting my time and energy for the upliftment of the people in my area back home.”
“I see” I remarked “so then you changed your life completely”.
“As a matter of fact the major turning point was in 2016 when I met Karimul Hak, a tea garden labourer, who had ferried more than 4,000 patients on his bike to various hospitals for free. The meeting with him changed my life forever. When I saw a man doing so much for the poor despite earning a meagre salary of Rs 4,000, I could not hold myself and immersed myself in social work.”
“That also resulted in your first book ‘The Bike Ambulance Dada’, isn’t it?” I added “so is that how your next book is also inspired?”
“Yes but there is more to it, in the year my 2018, when I acquainted Lhato Jamba, president of Gyalphozing College of Information Technology, Bhutan’s first IT college, I was amazed by his humbleness, innovative ideas and simplicity. Jamba requested me to teach social media communication skill to his students. The visit to Bhutan threw open a hitherto unexpected opportunity to me to know the country. This tiny Himalayan country is known for its happiness and its peace-loving people.”
“You know what, I am already interested in this book” said I.
“I hope this book will help to clear doubts about life, and about our understanding of success and happiness, the meaning of those words that I myself had never understood before I met Karimul Hak and before I took the journey to Bhutan. I would consider myself fortunate if this book helps one to realise the true meaning of life.”
With these words we bid goodbye, but I kept thinking and kept repeating the conversation over and over again in my mind, and as of now I am eagerly waiting for Biswajit Jha’s book to get published.
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A devoted foodie with keen interest in wild life, music, cinema and travel Somashis has evolved over time . Being an enthusiastic reader he has recently started making occasional contribution to write-ups.