Sunday, January 29, 2006

On Meeto and an evening we shared

She was the woman who at times sat opposite me at this library and always had a warm smile. We never talked, but always smiled at each other. A year later in Delhi, my friend S whom she was dating then, proudly showed me her photograph, adding "is'nt she beautiful?" and I realised that this was my library smile friend. Later, when my world was falling apart during the massacre of Muslims in Gujarat, S,K,N and I went to her house, near the Indian Law Institute and the Supreme Court on Bhagwan Das Road. I wanted to bond with someone, anyone, who shared my anguish and outrage at what was happening in Gujarat. We all talked and then went out for chaat at Bengali market. Later that evening, all of us went for a screening of a documentary on the massacre that Sahmat had organised at the Constitution Club. Watching the documentary , I put my hand to my mouth, so I wouldn't weep. I looked away from the screen and I saw her wiping away tears.

I just got an email from N saying "You may have known...." I didn't know.

Dear Meeto, I never knew you well, but I will always remember the spirit of that evening I shared with you. Being with like-minded people during those difficult times meant a lot to me.

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