30 minutes become 2 hours when you have nothing to do. I sat on a corner seat looking here and there. It was not too crowded though few people were standing. Metro is the best mode of transport in Delhi, with some conditions applied.
After wasting few minutes watching someone pricking his nose, understanding someone's desire to look beautiful and witnessing a husband being forcefully made scapegoat for the heat waves outside, I rested my eyes on a modest lady sitting just in the opposite row in front of me.
She was in her 40s. She was wearing a loose, deep necked white t-shirt with a blue color ankle length trouser. She was little fatter from the current standards of beauty. The air from the AC was making her tresses move over her chubby cheeks. Some persons have a habit of taking a nap the moment they get a seat in a train, she was one of them.
Suddenly, a man standing beside her clicked her pics and I noticed that there is something more worthy of the attention below the face. The man took 2-3 pics. He then zoomed the pics one by one and enjoyed to the soul. He then looked here and there to ascertain that no one is watching.
Who is this man and what is he doing? This is wrong. I got suspicious. This man must be a pimp. He will circulate these pics to his network or he will get these pics morphed. Smart phone has made these things very easy. Wearing a wrinkled shirt and mismatch pant, he was looking very cheap. He had a bag made of clothe hanging on his shoulders. He put his phone back in his pocket. I thought, I should confront him. But, since nobody else is saying anything, why should I? But, nobody else might have seen. I know that I have seen. Should I remain silent? Then, this is wrong! I have read so many messages in facebook and whatsapp that to remain neutral at the time something wrong is happening is bad. I also advocated the importance of morality and when this is time to act, will I remain silent? But, what will I say to him and what if he abuses me and nobody else spoke in my support? What if he has knife in his bag? Oh come on! There is a security check before entering metro premises. The lady was sleeping otherwise I could have told her. Or at least, I could have signaled her about this.
In the next station, the other woman sitting beside her got down and this pimp sat there. Oh! Now this man will start black-mailing her. He murmured something to her. I got curious. She listened. He showed her pics form his phone. She took her phone and looked carefully. She smiled and returned his phone asked something as if she is saying, 'Tum bhi na.' She rested her head on his shoulder and closed her eyes. He picked up water bottle from his bag, took a sip or two, gave it to her, she also took a sip and slipped back to her slumber.
I forgave myself for choosing not to confront and got down at my destination though introspection ignited inside me.
- Amit Roop