- 6th September 2018
- Posted by: Tapan Ghosh
- Category: Other Stories
Why undo nature when this is a cause of all the wrongs everywhere?
Love is nature’s gift. It transcends the barriers of age, skin colour, caste, community, religion and sex. Why should we allow society to deny us this purity of nature? Why should women be denied equal rights? Women enjoying sex is considered as capital sin! Why?
Sheetal Sinha is busy tiding up her drawing room, admiring every piece of furniture while positioning it at the right place. She looks at herself in a fancy reflective showcase, quickly brushing her hair with her fingers and looking at her watch, as if expecting someone special.
The doorbell rings. A smile adorns her lips as she opens the door for Jyotsna Chavan, about three years older than her. Both hug each other and exchange pleasantries.
Jyotsna admires the beautifully furnished apartment before shifting her gaze to Sheetal – the charming 25-year old with a beckoning silhouette. Ramu is seen bringing in a bulky bag from Jyotsna’s car and Sheetal asks him to take it to her bedroom. Jyotsna is seen raising her eyebrows. Sheetal explains that her husband Sanjay is away for 18 months on assignment to KNPC site in Kuwait as a site engineer (in-charge).
Sheetal shows her the bedroom and the empty space in the wardrobe and explains that most of Sanjay’s clothes have been taken by him. As they transfer the clothes to the wardrobe, Sheetal is compelled to give her a peep into the latest trends in fashion, explaining every cut and style. Jyotsna looks receptive and eager to follow and practice. They take a tour of the two bedroom apartment showing her first the attached bathroom to their master room. Jyotsna is seen inspecting every bit, keeping her toiletries at the right place and then admiring with a nod to look at Sheetal smile.
They go to the kitchen. We see Ramu there who, as she explains, is a daytime help and the maid who cooks, comes and goes. The hall cum dining is somewhat L shaped, the best part being the balcony with a view. As Jyotsna likes that, Sheetal quickly takes her to their master bedroom to show the second balcony, their private one. Jyotsna takes a deep breath of the clean air and announces how pure the air here in Kharghar is as compared to any place in Delhi or Bombay.
Jyotsna remarks that she’s here on an important media assignment and not to buy the house. Sheetal says don’t we inspect a hotel room that we book for a night or two. Jyotsna nods. They go the second bedroom that’s locked. Sheetal calls out and the door opens. Anil Sinha, Sheetal’s far off cousin, a long-time associate and a great help with camera and editing of Sheetal’s profile as a freelance model is in the room. Anil is asked to show all that is on the screen. Anil appears to be a secret admirer of Sheetal and does not like outsiders to interrupt the usual interaction he has with her. Jyotsna feels like an intruder. He locks the door no sooner they leave. They go to the kitchen again to give instructions to Ramu.
As they settle down on the couch, Jyotsna talks about her drive from Pune. Only getting away from the city is a problem, otherwise she loves highway. Sheetal tells her how nice the Palm Beach road drive is, to which Jyotsna agrees and says they will do a lot of that during her stay there. This excites Sheetal, she gets up and sits close to Jyotsna to show her everything on her cell phone, the photos of all the exciting places to visit. She’s curious to know the make of the car and Jyotsna says it’s a Tata SUV. She says they can drive it on the beach and gets up to pull Jyotsna by her hand to show her the temple in the house. They say a short prayer and look at each other and feel at ease.
They sit down and Ramu serves them refreshments. Sheetal sits very close to her and says she’s so happy that her old friend has come to be with her. Jyotsna is all smiles, the joy on Sheetal’s face gives her a high. Jyotsna is an intellectual and the opinion maker of the outfit she works in. Despite her authoritative nature, she appears quite loving with Sheetal. While discussing the latest trends in fashion, Sheetal’s passion is on display. Jyotsna gets involved too and is physically seen keeping pace with Sheetal. An accidental touch brings about a magical sensation, as seen in Jyotsna’s expressions. They discuss their lifestyles and experiences. As Jyotsna is seen looking at a photo frame of the couple.
Sheetal talks about her marriage to Sanjay, a successful engineer. She points to his photo and compliments him as a sincere and hardworking man. But she reveals that she is sexually unsatisfied. Sanjay climaxes prematurely and is asexual too. Although the poor guy tries very hard and even cries, as a result they don’t even try. They have everything working for them except the thought of getting physical which is in itself repulsive. Jyotsna expresses sympathy and the two hug each other intimately, suggesting that an intense relationship is to follow.
The scene opens with Jyotsna and Sheetal in bed, early in the morning. Jyotsna opens her eyes and looks at Sheetal who is sleeping beside her in a negligee. Her attention is drawn to Sheetal’s exposed skin and she remembers their interaction of the previous evening in the car.
Jyotsna is all ears as Sheetal speaks in the car while she is manipulating the traffic skilfully in peak hours. The conversation is pleasant and Jyotsna takes on the role of an elder sister. Her eyes go to Sheetal’s half bare thighs and slender legs peering out of a short skirt. Jyotsna brakes suddenly, causing Sheetal to jerk forward, slightly exposing a part of her breast. The sensation is difficult for Jyotsna to control. She places her loving hands on Sheetal bare back and shoulders, asking her to fasten her seatbelt.
They arrive at Sheetal’s favourite night club. Once on the dance floor, Sheetal is seen swinging around trying to tempt Jyotsna to join in. She’s is on a high, says she’s come here after long time, as Sanjay has been away. She doesn’t like the idea of boys approaching her for a dance. She pulls Jyotsna to the dance floor who loves the idea but looks a bit shy. Sheetal gets her to a close dance going with the slower pace of music at the moment and unintentionally rubs Jyotsna breast against hers. This gets Jyotsna excited, unable to resist any more. Her lips get very close to Sheetal’s, who gets a start, then thinks what the hell and gives in, as she’s too high. Jyotsna is seen feasting on her as the atmosphere plays an encouraging role.
On the return journey, Jyotsna acts like her elder sister and get her to fasten the seatbelt around her. Back home, Sheetal lies down with her head on her lap.
Jyotsna’s thoughts are interrupted as she sees some stirring movement in the bed. Sheetal gets up with an awful headache. She has a hangover from Sambuca shots.
Jyotsna rushes to the kitchen to make a drink with orange, lime and garlic with Alka Seltzer that she always carries. The fizzy drink works wonders and Sheetal rushes to Jyotsna like a child. I love you, please take care of me, she says. Jyotsna hugs her tightly. The drink, the citrus flush for liver cleansing is indeed very effective. Sheetal gets back to her lively self by stimulating Jyotsna private parts and the both get spurred. That’s the time Anil walks in to the toilet in the hall. As the door to Sheetal’s bedroom is ajar, he gets a glimpse of what’s happening inside.
Jyotsna and Sheetal continue to live together, in complete defiance of social norms. They not only enjoy each other’s company but learn a lot from each other. Jyotsna is intelligent, knowledgeable, mature and a good teacher. Sheetal on the other hand is not only a good student but very trendy and good with IOT. Jyotsna feels much younger in her jovial company.
Sanjay comes back for a short while before he returns to the KNPC site where he is on deputation for 18 months. Surprisingly, his 15-day presence at home is quite enjoyable. The three of them get along well. Strangely, Sanjay insists that Jyotsna remain in the master bedroom with Sheetal as he has to work late nights due to the time difference between India and his office abroad. He moves into Anil’s room and asks him to sleep on a couch in the hall. Sanjay facetimes with someone all night.
Jyotsna looks concerned as such a relationship is totally unrealistic and unacceptable to the world they live in. She is relieved that Sheetal has Sanjay’s support. This is a blessing. Jyotsna and Sheetal discover they are soulmates. Both are in a state of bliss. Jyotsna looks guilty, as this is too good to be true.
Anil gets more and more jealous as all his attempts at getting rid of Jyotsna fail. Shockingly, Sanjay encourages their relationship. He fumes with jealousy and meets up with his drunkard friend and next door neighbour Ranjit Agarwal. He blurts out all about the relationship of the two women in the house.
Ranjit tells him nothing can be done unless he can shoot them in the act. Anil has no choice; he has to positions himself to video shoot the action in the master bedroom through the ventilator opening above the door. Anil captures the two together on video and Ranjit is happy.
Ranjit follows the couple in a motorcycle, trying to stop their car driving ahead after the Nerul signal on Palm Beach road. Jyotsna brakes to stop the car immediately. She’s smart enough to guess his motives. As soon as he dismounts from the bike, Jyotsna steps on the pedal and drives away. Sheetal is horrified to see Ranjit; a rascal. His dad is the president of the building society.
The next day Ranjit is waiting in the basement. As Jyotsna comes down to take drive her SUV to work, Ranjit leaps ahead and gets hold of her. She struggles as he grabs her top. She screams and he’s taken aback. He goes back half a step. She kicks him on his balls. He cries out in pain and collapses. She takes his picture and and another of her torn top and shoots off. At the office she calls Sheetal warns her. She tells her to lock herself in the house. She writes an article praising the New Bombay Big NGOs Women Empowerment and LBGT group and calls Sanjiv to tell him about the incident. Then she rushes back to Sheetal as she doesn’t trust the law.
Ranjit recovers to tell his dad and shows him the video. Dad calls for a society meeting to show the video. The news spreads and soon becomes the talk of the society, the clips having been circulated on WhatsApp. The elders are shocked as the clip goes viral in the society. Among the young generation, 90% of males and 20% of females consider it a sin. They believe that the two have committed an immoral act and must be taught a lesson.
Harsh words are spoken to the elders in their family and the kin of the lesbians. Sheetal’s father watches the video and feels completely let down as his daughter has brought shame to the family. All her single-handed efforts to support the family pale into insignificance in the light of her living in sin. This act brings humiliation to the entire community.
It is the right time for Ranjit to act. He collects the hoodlums of the society and the watchmen. Anil opens the door with his key and the group barges in the house. The two women are overpowered and forcibly tied up. Anil and Ranjit exchange a sinister smile before going on to rape the two women as the society strongly feels the punishment is a must to nullify the sin.
At that moment Sanjay who rushes back from Kuwait, comes home to see a group of boys hand in glove with security. He goes up to his apartment and unlocks the main door. He is shocked to witness the rape. He quickly moves away from the scene and furiously tells Jyotsna office.
The two rapists flee the scene upon hearing the siren of the approaching police van.
Jyotsna and Sheetal vow vengeance. They hatch a plan and put it into action. Sanjay declares that he is gay himself, his family is aware of his sexual orientation. He confesses to being a victim, having been forcibly married to Sheetal. He teams up with Jyotsna and Sheetal to capture the two rapists and castrate them. Jyotsna and Sanjay take the lead in doing this while Sheetal captures the act on her phone.
The truth is out and the media and the educated wise men get together for a cause. The community brands the rapists hijras. The hijras are tied up later and put behind bars for life. The entire community is censured for their beliefs. The video clip of their censure also go viral.
Jyotsna and Sanjay face the law for taking the law in their hands. Sanjay comes in as a key witness for Harry as their defence attorney. It’s all about the body language, he says. It’s not about what you say but how you say it. Just speak the truth with all earnestness. The purity of truth will make the impact. After a long debate, the court rules in their favour. The court ruling by His Lordship Rituraj Verma is not merely a single statement but a complete explanation. The verdict is unprecedented. The first of its kind that sheds light on twisted beliefs of the society. Where a female enjoying sex is a big sin. Religion bestows power to touch a girl’s genitals as in certain communities sanctioning female genital mutilation (FGM).
The newspaper headlines:
What is happening to our liberal culture that existed 1000 years ago? We were the most liberal society in the world. Khajuraho and other temples throughout the country are a reminder of that. Today we have regressed to the bottom while the rest of the world is progressing day by day. Hats off to the thoughtfulness of Rituraj Verma. This verdict is a step in the right direction.
The entire nation rejoices that justice has at last been done.