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A Match of My Choice

By Asija, Manohar

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Book Id: WPLBN0002827429
Format Type: PDF (eBook)
File Size: 1.54 mb
Reproduction Date: 2/14/2013

Title: A Match of My Choice  
Author: Asija, Manohar
Volume:
Language: English
Subject: Fiction, Romance, Relationship
Collections: Romance, Authors Community, Psychology, Science, Philosophy, Cultural Studies, Music, Most Popular Books in China, Religion, Sociology, Education, Medicine, Literature, Law, Government, Political Science
Historic
Publication Date:
Publisher: Self-Published
Member Page: Manohar Asija

Description
This story whirls around plot that opens up when two ex-classmates happen to meet inadvertently, one on his official duty, while the other on past-time, enjoying holiday touring alone. Their next meeting, brings a female class fellow of theirs at the hill-station to make them enjoy one another’s company. This re-union continues to grow further during the years that follow. The author portrays just an account of certain events taking shape in the social sectors of these persons, making, breaking or remaking a marriage based on the choice of the persons involved into matrimony.

Excerpt
Hemant's intention in going to the H.P.T.D.C. hotel was, at the moment, influenced by the desire to meet Mr. Manmeet Malhotra, the manager. He also wanted thereby to express his gratitude to Mr. Malhotra who had arranged accommodation for him last night. Hemant was already under obligation of Mr Malhotra for his kind and affectionate treatment of Hemant when three years ago Hemant happened to meet him at the H.P.T.D.C. hotel at Manali where Manmeet Malhotra was working as an Astt Manager, those days. They were seeing each other after almost a decade since their graduation as students of S.R.C.C., Delhi. …………………….. "Well, how is `Bhabhiji`?" Hemant asked. For a few moments Manmeet held up his tongue tightly and only stared at Hemant with a smile on his face. Hemant thought that he had made a mistake. Perhaps, Triplem is still a bachelor like him. "But when I met him in Manali, he had told me that he had got married only three months before.” But Manmeet was quick enough to read the signs of perplexity in his friend's face and lost no time in explaining his position. ……………. He was not interested in knowing more about Mahajan than what he had already read in the visiting card. Fateh Chand Mahajan was a P.C.S (Retd); has a telephone connection at his residence at Circular Road (near courts building) and is a Social Worker. ………………. Amendments to the Hindu Marriage Act in 1955 ,introduced in the 2nd half of 20th century, changed the attitude of urban women towards their matrimonial rights, as is reflected by their becoming more and more vocal in their expression in newspapers and other periodicals every day. To Hemant it seems that the fair sex is striving to establish its supremacy over the husbands. Therefore, resistance ensued from male quarters, of course, in an unorganised way. It resulted in a spate of desertion and divorce cases in courts. …………. and before him was the attendant who assisted Mahajan in reaching the door-way. "Sir, a customer, aged around sixty, who seemed to be over-drunk, was interested in knowing about the other persons at the time of dinner with you. He knows you by name and also has the knowledge of your previous posting at Manali. ……………… "When did you come here, Sir? " "I am here for the last five days. And when did you?" "For the last five months," said she smilingly. Raising her hand in the direction where Jagdish stood, as if on alert, she beckoned him and spoke in an authoritative tone, "Sahebji will be taking his breakfast with me at my place." It made him guess that she was not a mere inmate but was holding a position of great importance over there. Even otherwise Hemant knew her well and also her frank and informal mannerism, particularly in interacting with him. She majestically made her exit from the lounge beckoning Hemant to accompany her to the annexe where she had her residence: he followed into her steps and they were sitting in the verandah connected with the main building through a corridor. Jagdish re-appeared there in a short-while. Without his asking anything she read from his face as to what he wanted to know. ……………. "Congrats! Didi. I suppose you will get your next promotion very soon. They have, it seems, condoned your absence from duty arising out of your resignation and treated you on 'matrimonial leave'" But their mother, Mamata Kohli, remained unconcerned, as she wanted her daughter to lead a family life of her own. Though she was desirous of an early reconciliation in between the estranged spouses yet she would not mind her son-in-law to be coerced to settle down in Delhi. …………… As she was turning the leaves she suddenly laid her hand on a visiting card awaiting her attention and 'asking for' the noting-down of the requisite particulars from it into the diary for future reference. She put down the diary on the table and began to peruse the details of the printed matter the visiting card in her right hand wanted to convey. Though at the very first sight of it she had observed that it was Hemant's, she considered it expeditious to make the relevant entries into the diary and for this purpose began to scan it. ………………… She fully agreed with Hardy who states that a man could be bachelor either by nature or by circumstances. She further maintains that the same is true in the case of the other sex. ………………. Dr Harish Kumar Vohra was not only a father of Hemant, Sharad and Shishir, but also a friend to all the three young men without any expectations of being rewarded in any form or at any time by the sons. He always considered himself duty-bound to come to the aid of his family members. Sometimes he did it even at the cost of his own physical as well as mental health. Since the arrival of Sharad's wife into the family, as a result of marriage, he had begun noticing in his wife's personality, certain qualities and weaknesses commonly found in women. Though seemingly maintaining neutrality, he always had a soft corner for the young girl whom he always considered his daughter. ……………… Since his youth Harish Vohra has very liberal views about exercising the choice to find a life-mate. He wants his children to enjoy more freedom than he himself had at the time of his marriage. It is his firm belief that marriages are not made in heaven. He says," We fail to properly assess our needs and potentials and hence often make mistakes in matching those of the other party with our own." ……………. He is always thankful to God for giving him adaptability to the changes in the circumstances. During his young days he had read somewhere, now he cannot recall where, that we must try to put up with the situation, which we cannot change to our likes. ………… She has always been on the guard to keep herself at a reasonable distance from her sister's husband and never tried to bother him for her personal affairs. She considered it essential for her sister's happiness. By this time, she had almost inculcated in herself a habit of self-reliance. But Hemant's proximity to her meant a lot of emotional support in her otherwise socially active life. She decides to treat Hemant as the most valued friend and therefore, would take every care to maintain this relationship. She would not let her vanity or prejudices stand in between him and herself. …………… He told that his company intends to telecast a short commercial of 30 seconds and for this he needed a video-film maker to handle the entire package of delivery to the Door Darshan by 26th January to promote the sale of cards for the occasion of the Valentine's Day to be celebrated on February 14. She discussed the initial details required for preparation of the proposal of the project and promised to send the detailed project report along with the cost-estimates to his office within 3 days. ………… A few days before the shooting the appointed model Kriti caught cold and was confined to her residence sneezing and blowing out her nose every few minutes. She informed her client on this score and sought their approval to change the model. Mr. Jacob suggested that she herself should take the place of Kriti and let them see the sample-shot. She talked to Hemant on the telephone and she was encouraged by him to take a chance, as he was confident of her success. But Inder Jeet felt diffident and made it known to him, "I just can't do it at any rate. Hemant then advised her to re-schedule the shooting in such a manner that some of the workers in the studio were to work over-time and for this paid extra. He hoped that Kriti would be fine enough soon to face the cameras and the film would be ready by the stipulated date. ………….. But Kriti's fascination for Hemant did not ebb: rather she longed to have a glimpse of him. During her work for the next assignment she obliquely enquired about Hemant by asking various persons, at the studio, bit by bit. She could gather only this much of information that Mr Vohra had been a classmate of Madame during college days and they had met again only very recently. She then decided to probe deeper into their relationship and to make a way for herself in case she could find a cleavage somewhere. The loneliness in her life caused by mother's death and father's indulgence in wine and women made her a deserted soul. Then came the utter failure of her elder sister's marriage with a 'handsome young man, well-placed in life, with affable and charming personality'. ……….. At Kohlis, The marriage of Sumit, Shilpa’s brother, was fixed for February 25. Prabhat and his mother arrived at Shilpa's parental home only a day before marriage of her only brother and Shilpa's mother also took a serious note of the pronouncement made by Prabhat and his mother immediately after their arrival to the effect that they were scheduled to leave Delhi for Calcutta on the 26th of February as they had already got two berths reserved for themselves on the steamer which leaves Calcutta on 28th for Port Blair. On the other hand Shilpa remained unmoved by it. ………. Hemant was one of the few invitees she chose from her superiors in the company. Shilpa introduced him to her husband as her 'boss in office' and then pointing towards Prabhat with the words "boss at home' and then turning away with a giggle went to receive other guests from her staff. A little later Shilpa noticed that Prabhat had by then seated himself beside his mother and therefore, she found it expeditious to return to her 'boss in office'. She spent a good deal of time in Hemant's company. Mamta Kohli regarded this attitude of her daughter towards her husband as unwarranted and socially undesirable. She had apprehensions too that Shilpa's foolish action of this sort might arouse jealousy in Prabhat's mind and it could prove disastrous for Shilpa herself. ………. While departing Shilpa's mother-in-law patted the newly-weds and sarcastically advised them to learn a few tips from Shilpa on 'a happy and successful married life' during the time she is staying with them. Mrs. Duggal's words pierced through Shilpa's heart and it was with great difficulty that she managed to keep herself composed. ……… Having been frustrated by his former son-in-law's refusal to talk to him, Mr. Mahajan felt very sick and took an over-dose of whisky and sat down staring at Roshani. She felt scared and immediately gave him a hug and almost dragged him to bed. Inwardly she had no sympathy for him on this account, because she had already advised him not to see Manmeet keeping in view the bitterness created during the past between him and Manmeet's family. She began to caress him and he pulled him to his side and helplessly tried to take her into his embrace, but failed to press her to his own bosom as the liquor had by now overpowered all his senses. He soon fell asleep leaving Roshani to curse her youthful days and a darker time ahead. ……. Having reached `Kothi Mem`, she took out Mr Chauhan's visiting-card from her wallet; and began to read its contents which provided the address of his office: Upstairs, Restaurant `Nashta-Pani`, Near Bus Terminus. She decided not to show this card to Mahajan at least for the present. The very next morning, she went to Chauhan's office, where she was received by his assistant, who welcomed her with a courteous smile. ………… Mr Fateh Chand Mahajan has had no repentance over his involvement in the fraud committed on Roshani in her elopement with her so-called lover in her early years of youth. ……… Mr. Suresh Kohli believed in the maxim: Humility is a safeguard against future humiliation. Nevertheless, the vicissitudes of life have taught him not to exhibit the virtue of humbleness at all occasions. ……. Miss Khurana was at the moment very keen to see Hemant Vohra as she has been receiving anonymous telephonic calls of disturbing nature. More than one person were involved in reaching her ears with threats to demolish her reputation if she did not break her relations with Hemant without further delay. She rang him up and requested him to visit her at the earliest. He promised to call on her, the very next day. ……. In fact, Hemant, on being advised by his father, as said above, searched his mother's latest views on matching horoscopes before fixing a marriage. Having found her stuck to her orthodox philosophy he had decided to convey it to Inder Jeet also so that she does not remain under any doubt or a false hope, because he dared not hurt his mother's feeling, more particularly when she is already inflicted with such a deadly ailment. He wanted to beg Inder Jeet's pardon to have made some overtures which made her extend her body so passionately to him. …… On her way back to her cabin she throws a glance at the sender's address. She was stunned to note that it was from the office of District Judge, Port Blair’s, Andamans and Nicobar Islands (U.T.). She seated herself in the chair and heaved a sigh. What it could be! Should she open it right now? Prabhat might have divorced her. ……… It was 1-00 p.m. on dot when they stopped their vehicle in front of advocate Malhotra's house in f-5 block of Model Town. A servant appeared at the wicket-gate and told them to park their car on other side of the lane on the pavement alongside the park boundary. …... Hemant went up to him; spoke out, "Uncle Jee! I am Hemant" before touching the old man's feet. After receiving an affectionate pat his back Hemant stood erect with his hands folded and declared that he has brought with him his colleague who seeks some sort of legal guidance. … Having heard her, the advocate said, "Now what do you want me to do?" The innocent and inexperienced girl could find no answer to this 'curt, but legally essential query. The experienced person at the other side of the table encouraged her to open up as he spoke, "Do you want to surrender right now to him or want some more time to make up your mind as to surrender to or altogether abandon him forever?" "Sir, I think the second option would be more suitable." … Then he called his wife in and on her appearance asked her to take down dictation. She took a seat close to her husband and got herself ready to write down. Shilpa was wonderstruck at this agility of the old lady. Having got the signal "Hum" from his wife, now turned assistant, he began to speak at a comfortably writing speed. She wrote: …… The notion of piety that has been so dear to her is causing to develop a state of irritability in her. She is, of course, very much conscious of it. A tussle is brewing inside her. She questions herself, "What for I am clinging to Hemant?" To this she finds no answer, which could be genuine or at least plausible. She does not want to live under any mistaken notion. She is ready to admit that Hemant simply conveyed to her on telephone that he intended to visit Kangra valley and is thinking of getting accommodation booked in a hotel at Dharamshala through Manmeet, who is posted there as Area Manager. She had been lured by this idea that she called back on Hemant to discuss the details of the tour and at the end of this discussion on the telephone she questioned him, "Can we enjoy this tour on Tommy-share basis as good friends?" And in reply, she heard a hearty laugh from the other end, followed by those sweet words, "Oh! My dear Indu!” ………… At Shishir's wedding-party both Shilpa and Pushpendra were seen moving around in each other's company like very intimate friends. When other couples were being invited to be photographed with the newly-weds on the stage, Shilpa and Pushpendra showed no hesitation to participate in the fun on being asked by Manmeet to do so.

 

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