By Kamala Sarup
March 6, 2007
I wrote this diary about my friend. Actually after returning from Prostitute Brothel, my first meeting with her began the strange day for me. In a way, every day I have been meeting a person or the other. Whatever it may be, among those I met at this moment she is a bit different from other and, in fact, this is an important in our friendship. It’s not that I am trying to keep this day separate from others from the expected thought of other things. I am not trying either to interpret the concept of the philosopher that people live in their own ways. Whatever it may be, in this situation of tension I am delighted to have met this friend.
She told me “My daily life’s routine has started. The large city of prostitute brothel which is terrifying to look at with its tall buildings, I felt as if everyone who lived inside felt satisfied and they quenched their hunger. I don’t like even to remember. I was buried in my mind’s inner conflict of that really.
Due to the compulsion to sell my body every evening, all the time within me an unknown fear, terror and fright created an empire of its own. I felt restless at my living; I was disgusted every moment with that kind of life.
The notorious brothel where I was living was a place where thousands of girls like me had to sell their bodies for cheap prices. Alas! How hard and full of terror was to live in that environment! When I think of it, my heart trembles even today. Although the pain within me had another chief reason and that was the memory never left me. Almost always I remembered my village.The mountains, the waterfalls and the forests that extended far and wide looked as hard as life itself with them uphill and downhill filled with the crowds.
She further added “When I went to the market with my mother we had to cross through the dangerous wild forests. My mother had a dream exactly like mine that her daughter would get some education by going to the city and could stand on her own to make her living. But I was brought to this terrible brothel and was sold by my own uncle’s son. I was sold just for twenty thousand rupees, and I came to know later that it was a brothel where thousands of girls were sold and they were forced to sell their bodies for a small amount of money. In a place where the human vultures spend money to play foul with raw flesh and the prestige of one was ruined just for a handful of coins, how could I survive in a place such as that? My heart was filled with depression and anguish, but I was unable to express any of my feelings to anybody because the trade of female bodies was found from big lodges to hotels and yellow mansions of that city .In that place bargain of girls, selling them and turning them into prostitutes by force inflicting untold tortures on them were just a common incident in that environment. The sexually lure rich men filled their thirst with me everyday.
She was obviously scared. She cried “It was a great joke that my right over my own body was snatched away from me. Often a question tormented me from time to time. After all, what was the real meaning of a person to live as a woman? Was it just a means of providing cheap enjoyment which one could have by paying money? I hated my existence as a woman in thousands of questions. What a pity! My body was torn and snatched out by hundreds everyday. When I saw the mistresses of brothels surrounding me, every time I felt inferiority complex. All the males were hungry for fulfilling their sexual passion. I felt a strong hatred towards men. But despite the fact I had to sell my body.
While she was talking, crying and talking “When I came to Kathmandu, I had a great imagination. I had fancied a separate sky. My life, in fact, was quite terrible and horrible as I had to live surrounded twenty four hours by agents and customers. At the gates of every building there were agents busy haggling for our bodies as if we were beasts kept for auction. And we waited for the customers inside a very dark and foul smelling room.
Who was there to love me in that world of money ? Everywhere there were alcoholic drinks, money and only customers. At that time, I was completely robbed. The value of my body and of my soul was completely depleted. But now, I have returned to my own country with the germs of AIDS in with me. Although I served the brothel for so many years. I have gone empty now. When I have come back, I am here with empty mind and carrying a terrible disease with me. She said.
I asked her a lot of questions, only some of which she could answer. She spent the time talking with me and said ” After my arrival here, I have met the man without name. I found out that he hadn’t got married yet. Really, I didn’t see any difference between the man without name in the past and at the present time. He showed the same attraction, the same love and the same restlessness to see me.
At this moment, he is closer to me and I am crying to open up some thing of life to him with some shyness. To be closer to each other is a pleasant moment.
” It’s definitely not easy to be alive. In fact, life is a difficult, dangerous and
unpleasant journey”. The man without name is trying to make me understand”.She said.
I am outside of my apartment. I am now looking at my diary. A street ! When you refer to a street you have to associate it with the crowds of people. With the street comes the question of crowds and noise they make. There used to be the same crowd in the street at that time and even today. There is no decrease in the throngs of people. At this moment I too am in the crowd of people. But, the special quality of the street has been to remain alone. Even in the crowd except one or two faces known sometimes remain mostly unacquainted. I am walking on the side of this crowd without stopping. But the crowd is increasing all the more. “Even at this moment in this place, the crowd has been large as at the Asan market,” an old women near me shouts. “These people are tremendously increasing in number. Every time I am afraid that there would be some accident. It is not safe to send children to school”, she prattles on for a long time. She pulls a small child walking beside her and holds its friendly arm.
Everybody has his own problem. Perhaps no person is free from his or her problem. Oh! Should I have an ideal thought like this? I am startled in my walk and unknowingly my steps turn toward the residence of my friend again. She was found all alone in her room. She shows her formality, “Come in Kamala”.
I go close to her and sit down.
” I have arranged a job for you in an office. After all who do you have as your own here in Kathmandu? You must forget your past. Whatever may be, the criminal has been punished. Now you shouldn’t continue worrying”, I told her everything in a breath.
She cried in response and said “My mind feels an acute pinch. My past has gone through such a hot torture that the criminal’s getting even a capital punishment would not heal my wound nor the stain in my character erase, because of which today I am suffering from AIDS. He deserves to die for the shame he brought to my life. Kamala, did you know that the man who had sold me had been released from the prison?”
When I hear what she told me I felt that I was sinking where I stood. I am frightened. I am choked. No law is made in my country for a man who sold me. I move away from the place. I don’t even like to look back. I don’t know where I am going now.
Nepali Journalist and Story Writer Kamala Sarup is an editor of peacejournalism.com, She is specialising in in-depth reporting and writing on Peace, Anti War, Women, Terrorism, Democracy, and Development. Some of her publications are: Women’s Empowerment (Booklet). Prevention of trafficking in women through media,(Book) Efforts to Prevent Trafficking in for Media Activism (Media research). Two Stories collections. Her interests include international conflict resolution, cross-cultural communication,philosophy,feminism, political, socio-economic and literature. Her current plans are to move on to humanitarian work in conflict areas in the near future. She also is experienced in organizational and community development.