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Bindu’s Son: Sarat Chandra’s ‘Bindur Chhele’ (Chapter – 9)

July 10, 2024 | By

LnC brings you Bindu’s Son, Lopamudra Banerjee’s translation of Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s novella Bindur Chhele — a beautiful story of a mother’s unwavering affection for her son. Enjoy the concluding Chapter – 9 of this unusually moving, emotional saga of love, sacrifice and pure human bonding, published every Wednesday as a Special Series 📖💕

Continued from Chapter – 8

 

Bindur chhele episode 9A

Nobody in the family knew since when Bindu was decaying, destroying herself bit by bit by starving. When she came to her parents’ home, she fell sick with fever. On the second day, she fainted two-three times; and since the last time she fainted, she didn’t seem to gain consciousness. After a long, turbulent phase, and after much effort, when she regained her senses, her frail nerves made her almost sink. When Madhav came to see her upon receiving her news, she somehow managed to pay him her pranam, but then, she remained steadfast in her determination. Even after a lot of coaxing and cajoling, she didn’t drink a sip of milk to revive herself.

Frustrated and in anguish, Madhav asked: “Why are you committing suicide?”

Tears dripped through the corners of Bindu’s eyes, almost shut in weakness and despair. After a long pause, she uttered softly: “All my assets belong to Amulya. Just give two thousand rupees to Naren, and also fund his education—he loves my Amulya dearly.”

Hearing this, Madhav bit his lips with his teeth in an attempt to prevent his tears.

Bindu gestured him to come closer to him and then whispered: “Let nobody else but Amulya put fire to my dead body!”

Madhav managed to withstand that shocking statement and whispered in her ears: “Do you wish to see somebody?”

Bindu nodded her shoulders and replied: “No—let it be.”

Bindu’s mother tried to feed her some medicine for one last time, but she locked her mouth with her teeth with dogged determination.

Madhav stood up and protested: “This cannot be, Bindu! All this while, you didn’t listen to us…but now, let me go and bring the one whose words you cannot disobey! Only promise me—promise me that you won’t go away till I come back…” Saying this, Madhav went outside and wiped his tears. That night, Bindu slept peacefully.

At the break of dawn, Madhav entered Bindu’s room, blew away the candle and opened the window. Upon opening her weary eyes, Bindu glanced at the gloomy face of her husband in the pristine light of the early morning.

She smiled a bit and asked: “When did you come?”

“Just now…Dada is crying like a mad man!” Madhav replied.

Bindu said softly: “I know that…Have you brought some dust from his feet?”

“He is having tobacco outside the house—and Bouthan is washing her hands and feet…. Amulya had fallen asleep in the carriage while we were on our way, I’ve made him sleep upstairs. Shall I bring him to you?”

After a momentary pause, Bindu uttered: “No, let him sleep.” Then, she slowly turned to the other side and slept on.

A little later, when Annapurna came to the room and tenderly touched her head with her hand, Bindu was startled. For a minute or so, Annapurna restrained her emotions, but then, asked with a choked voice: “Why didn’t you have the medicines, tell me? Do you want to die?”

Bindu remained mum. Annapurna came close to her and whispered in her ears: “Can you image how much pain and anguish is there in my bosom?”

Bindu replied softly: “I can, Didi!”

“Then look at me…Turn to this side! Your Borthakur (elder brother-in-law) himself has come to take you home. And your son kept crying uncontrollably, till he fell asleep. Listen to me—turn your face and do as I say!”

In spite of this, Bindu didn’t turn her face towards Annapurna. She nodded her head softly and said: “No, Didi, first let me—”

Annapurna cut her mid-sentence, and said: “I promise, we will talk about that—but please come home with us first!”

At that moment, Jadav came and stood near the door, and Annapurna covered Bindu’s head with a shawl. For a moment, Jadav glanced at his dear younger sister-in-law covered from head to toe with all his affection. He managed to speak, preventing his tears from coming, and said: “Ma, come home with us, I have come to bring you back.”

Looking at his pale face, his frail form, everyone present there was moved to tears. After a moment of silence, Jadav said: “Years back, when you were just a small girl, Ma, I was the one who came and took you to our house as the Goddess Lakshmi of my family. It didn’t ever occur to me that I would have to come back again; but since I’m here, I will either take you along with me, or I’ll never step foot again inside this house…And you know it very well, Ma, I have never uttered a single lie in my life!”

After uttering these words, Jadav stepped outside.

Bindu turned towards Annapurna now and said: “Give me something to eat, Didi. But first, bring Amulya to me—Let him sleep in my room and then you all can go and have some rest. And you need not worry about me anymore—I’ve decided I won’t die, not so soon!”

CONCLUDED

—XXX—

Bindu’s Son Special Series is published every Wednesday.

Click here to read the chapters

Sarat Chandra Bindur-Chhele (Bindu's Son) english translation

 

More Must Read in LnC Translations

Rabindranath Tagore’s Chitrangada: English Translation

Yashoda: Poetry in Translation

Sakhi Bhaabona Kaahare Bole — English Translation of Tagore’s Song

Two Tagore Songs of ‘Puja’ Parjaay in Translation

Lopamudra (Lopa) Banerjee is an author, editor, poet and writing instructor staying in Dallas, Texas with her family, but originally from Kolkata, India. She has a Masters in English with thesis in Creative Nonfiction from University of Nebraska and also Masters in English from University of Calcutta, India. Apart from writing and editing some critically acclaimed books and being awarded with the Reuel International Prize for Poetry (2017) and for Translation (2016), she has dabbled in all genres of writing, from journalism and content writing to academic essays and fiction/poetry. She has been interviewed in various e-zines, literary blogs and also at TV (Kolkata) and at radio stations in Dallas, Texas. Very recently, she has been part of the upcoming short film 'Kolkata Cocktail', a docu-feature based on poetry, but her love for writing feature stories go back to her journalism days when she interviewed people from all walks of life and wrote essays and articles based on them. She loves performing poetry as spoken words art and has performed in various forums in India and USA.
All Posts of Lopamudra Banerjee

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