Saturday, March 24, 2018

Conversations on water in an arid land!

When I woke up today, I found myself in an arid land.  The air was bereft of any moist. It seemed as if every gush of air, laced with burning arrows of sunrays, was pricking my body, In short intervals there were sand storms spiraling up and blanketing me completely with sand. There was no sign of a single human, a single tree or a single animal. 

Dusting the sand off my body, I started trudging through the smoldering sand with bare feet in search of water as I was feeling really parched. My throat was bone dry. I saw a small pool of water some ten steps ahead. I raced towards that. But as I reached the place, the pool of water moved some few steps ahead. I was flabbergasted. And then it dawned upon me that it was just a mirage about which I had read in school books.

Frazzled by strolling amid sand, I sat down in the shadow of a big rock to take shelter from scorching sun. As I was resting, I heard some noise of digging. “Someone must be digging for water,” I thought in my mind. I got up and scuttled towards the digging sound.

As I reached there, I saw an old man with long white hair and beard digging the sand frantically.  Some laptops and mobile phones were scattered around the ditch.

“What are you doing?” I asked the old man.

“Can’t you see?” asked the old man in return.

“I can see…but…anyways…do you know where can I find some water…I am really thirsty?”

“What do you think I am searching in the sand? I am also thirsty and thirstier than you,” said the old man in rude tone.

“But why are you digging laptops and mobile phones from the sand don’t you know the place where we can dig some water?”

“I am digging laptops and mobiles because you loved only these, had you loved water, I would not have to be thirsty for fifty years or so?” replied the old man.

“What? you are thirsty for fifty years?”

“Yes, since the year this beautiful city died due to lack of water in June of 2049 to today in June of 2099, I am thirsty,” replied the old man.

“What? It is 2099? I can’t believe it. When last night I slept, it was March 2018,” I opposed.

“Seeing is believing dear, can you see any trace of year 2018 around you?” asked the old man.

“But which city it was?”

“It was a tech city… Bengaluru, in India, people in the city cared more for computers, mobiles and modern technics, but they forgot to take care for water. They forgot to save water. They forgot to respect water. They believed more in cutting chai but forgot to include #CuttingPani in their lifestyle. Gradually, they started dying due to dearth of water and finally they evaporated from this world.”

“I don’t think that people of Bengaluru are such careless fellows, they respect water.”

“Had they respected, you would not have been seeing such dessert around you… and leave about people, do you respect water? When you had kept the tap open while shaving… had you realized that it was a way of wasting water? and when you had thrown the half- drunk bottle of water in the dustbin after your train journey from Patna last month…had you realized that it was a waste of water?” asked the old man in stern voice.

“How do you know all these things? Who are you? And how come you are alive after so many years of human extinction in Bengaluru?” 

“I am the one who is cursed to be alive till the end of this world…I am Ashwathama,” said the old man removing the hairs dangling on his forehead to wipe something.

As he removed his dangling hair, my eyes went directly on his forehead that was oozing with pus and blood. 

I moved ahead to touch the mythological character, but fell from my bed with a thud.

“What happened?” cried my mother from kitchen.

“Nothing!” I replied to assure her by trying to make my voice as unruffled as possible. My mind was in a spin and body was drenched with sweat. As I managed myself to get back on my bed and rested for a while, I got reminded of a Livepure initiative to save water. Seeing the gruesome future of the city in my dream, I then and there signed the petition. You are also invited to do so. Click here and commit yourself to save water: