Ashalata Sarkar

Ashalata, around sixty,  normally moody, confused and complaining about imaginary sicknesses  that Doctors feel she is shaming, is otherwise a beautiful woman with healthy teeth and pleasing countenance. Life had never been easy for her.  Born to a Hindu family, they migrated to Assam from Bangladesh in 1971 with her husband and son. They settled in Assam in rural  Kamrup, Assam . The husband with his money which he brought from Bangladesh bought some land. The hard working man worked hard on his land with gusto and they had a good life till her husband started philandering. , One fine evening, he brought an another woman to their house. With pain she accepted it. But within another two years he brought an another woman to their home and proclaimed her as his third wife. That was not the end. A few years there after, he got fed up with his three wives and brought in another young woman home and proclaimed her as his fourth wife. Ashalata  unable to look after his harem took her son and left her home and landed up in Guwahati.  She was given shelter by  one Rai Bahadur , ( We are unable to locate a Rai Bahadur at Guwahati) , worked there as a domestic help till one day her so one day her son, around eleven by then, who was sent to fetch milk by the ‘Rai Bahadur’ did not return back home. She ran around asking everyone about his whereabout, went to the Police, but the boy could not be traced. Unable to bear the loss and suspecting Rai Bahadurs complicity in the disappearance of her son , who was a hand some lad, she left Rai Bahadur’s house and changed eight places as household help till last year a couple who refused to even sign a mandatory  form accepting that she was brought by them, dumped her at Seneh. It took us some times to make Ashalata  accept her new bearings, but gradually she is adopting very well to the sisterly attitude of all the residents of Seneh and is taking part in all its activities.