Introduction to the idea of Cybermohalla
My name is Shamsher. I work with the Compughar at LNJP. Today I want to share with you some reflections on what Cybermohalla is about.
A lot goes on at the Compughar, even when it looks like there is very little activity. Writing texts is one of the things we do here. We also talk. And we debate a lot. And when it's not these things, there is a lot else - conversations with the elderly, interviews about the place where we live, this social universe where there are many laws laid down for us, though we don't know by whom. We also make animations on the computers, with the mouse as our play mate. And sometimes we take photographs of our world. In this last, we find the opportunity to caress our memories and feel happy. And so our world of memories also find a world of their own. Relationships of a special nature get formed in this way. Through the Compughar, we got the opportunity to travel outside the colony. We stopped being hesitant, and felt a sense of openness through dissolving boundaries. And through this we realised there was a world outside, where there were people just like us. Just like us, they have questions, and though there are answers to these questions, these answers remain unacknowledged. Sometimes we imagine the Compughar in ways completely different from this one, through different terms. And thinking of the Compughar anew in this way, do something new in it! The constants that remain are texts, sounds, images.
Before writing a text, we peep inside our own selves. At least that's what I think. What I'm trying to say is that my family is mine, only mine. The railway line is mine. The sky, trees, plants, petrol pump are all mine. My friends are mine, their homes are mine. Not only this, I also think they are mine rightfully. But I must bear a cost for all of this. This cost can be anything. One cost that is huge is what we call relationships. And the word 'relationships' is very valuable in our lives. Travelers we meet on the way are strangers. In most probability, we haven't met them before and we don't know anything about them. We can build a relationship with them and become co-travelers. And they really are co-travelers, not strangers. This happened with me once.
There was a marriage in the village. Only my elder brother and I were going for it. I told my father I would like to go alone. He was very happy to hear that and said, "Bravo! But you won't go alone". I felt a little unhappy. We had a reservation in the train. Sitting in the train I was wondering why Papa had refused. I think I knew. It's that one thing that circulates so much in society, and which I have already mentioned as well. And what eventually happened was that I traveled back alone! And that too, without a reservation and in the general compartment. I found a seat which had been occupied by only one man. I sat on it and after some time, the train started to move. A few hours later, a young man got in from a station and came and stood in front of me. I could take a good look at him - from the left to the right, from up to down. Even he had quite checked me out by then.
Then he said, "Bhai, can I get some space to sit?" I shifted and with my eyes, gestured to him to sit. A little later, we introduced ourselves to one another. We realised what was common between us was our destination, Delhi. While chatting, a bond of friendship developed between us, and that's how we traveled together. On reaching Delhi, we got off the train, looked at each other, shook hands and turned towards our respective homes.
Whenever we will think of this train journey, we will not think of each other as strangers.
Many among you will be strangers to me, but now I feel I am no more a stranger to you. Maybe I have created a relationship with you in my heart.
Thankyou. Now Suraj Rai will be talking about the Book Box, which we have gathered today to formally release.
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