外文标题：Living In Pune...Part 1 ( With Images of Life in India and China)
After we came back to Pune, we started running errands for our son. He would go for work on scooter on the days he missed the company bus.He had made a feeble demand of giving him Honda lying mostly idle at Chandigarh, as we have another car besides. Distances between places in Chandigarh aren’t much and even when the boys were with us the cars were not running much. The younger one left for Pune in 2007 and the elder one left for Australia in 2005. I generally stay away from India, so how much can my wife run these cars? Last year she was with me in China anyway.
I told him that it would be quite a botheration to send a car and then go through the process of changing registry as he won’t have time, I would rather buy him a new car. He wasn’t very appreciative of the idea because after getting license, he hadn’t driven car in last four years.We bought him the car and drove it to Goa so that we could have enough miles before first service.
He together with his two other friends has hired ground floor of a bungalow. The colony called Sah-Vidya Nagar is at a foot of a hill. There is a temple on top of the hill.
At night the chalk white temple illuminated by strong lights looks very soothing and enchanting. Milky white structure with a saffron flag fluttering atop and brilliantly lit, gives the impression of it being a God’s adobe in heaven and atheist like me too get tempted to visit it.
Like some people are happy with whatever they have in life..So are these flowers blooming when everything around them is withering.
One day we set out to pay obeisance at the temple. It was nearly noon time when we started and we worried that we may find the temple “dwars” closed. We wanted to go in the car as far as we could as Smart Sulekhika was reluctant to walk and we are modern bhakts at best. We couldn’t go far in the car as the road that branched out from the main road became a narrow street after a few meters and we had to park the car in the clearing. Very small hutments teeming with frail women and dusty, unwashed naked kids going about their business held the harsh truth of Indian poverty for anyone to see. Some men seemingly happy to have had Darshan and feeling blessed were coming down the path. They told us about the way to the temple and advised us to visit Bhairo Nath’s temple that we could see and Lord Mahesh’s temple that we couldn’t as it was around a bend on the street.
一天，我们出发去寺庙拜拜。出发时已经接近中午时分，我们担心会吃到闭门羹。妻子不愿意多走路，所以能开车的路段我们尽量用车代步。离开了主路后，岔路没走几米就变得很窄，我们只好把车停在空地上。狭小棚屋里瘦骨伶仃的妇女和满身灰尘有待洗净的光着身子的孩子在忙着手上的活儿，这一景象向世人诉说着印度真实的贫穷现状。一些已经“得福”的男人看起来非常高兴。他们给我们指通往寺庙的路，并建议我们该去Bhairo Nath庙，别去Lord Mahesh庙。
Bhairo nath’s mandir stood at the edge of the steep. We removed our shoes and walked to the closed gate of the section of the temple that held the statue. Hot, cracked, crumbling, cemented walkway burned our soles and the stray dogs lay about in patches of shade.
After paying obeisance, we decided to give Shiva’s temple a skip and took a thin narrow strip of cobbled street with shanties on both sides, for going to the temple on top of the hill. Women were busy doing their washing and cooking in their varandahs. We moved on without peeping in to the humble privacy of poor people. The street led to the steps leading to the temple. A strong unmistakable stench of urine and excreta filled the space. There were warning signs abound against littering the place but it appeared that no one cared and as such the inhabitants had little choice because their shacks were not connected even to open drains.
Except for a few trees the hill was bare. At the temple stray dogs lay in wait for ‘Prasad’ or scrapped food that people donate or give away to the beggars on certain days.
We learnt that it was Tukayee Mata Mandir. We had not heard of her before and didn’t know whose incarnation was she. There was no Pujari and no bhakts there. I gave a hundred rupee note as donation to the care taker sitting for the purpose. His receipt book had run out of pages..so he said and I believed that the donation will not end up as booze money for wastrels.
原来这是Tukayee Mata Mandir庙，以前从未听说，不知道是谁的化身。我捐了100卢比，保管人说收条簿已经写满了。我相信这些布施不会被当做酒钱挥霍了。
He took note of our address in his register and promised that the receipt will be sent to us. He looked genuine and I am gullible by nature but it would have been a miracle if the receipt had come and in India caretakers of the temple trust of unheard of Tukayee Mata aren’t Nirmal Babas, they are much worse. Talking of Nirmal Baba, I am distressed to see IBN7 beaming his darbar everyday. I wonder why I & B is so concerned about the effect of beaming of “The Dirty Picture” on TV before midnight but can’t see any harm in open advertisement of chicanery. How low can Indian media stoop for money, I wonder. Don’t they have any moral obligation towards building a society that does more with hands than wait for miracles to happen?
Every now and then we see politicians donating crores at the temples and then going about looting and amassing wealth. Is paying obeisance to God a mere ritual? I beleive if I can't see the God in a fellow human being, I probably am not acquainted with Him. I won't recognize Him, if I come across Him.
To give free driving lessons to our son we would accompany him to and from his office at Hingewadi every morning and evening. Later he got transferred to a branch in Magarpatta. These are the pictures of Pune I took while staying there. MagarPatta is coming up very fast. Huge construction work is on. I observed during my stay at Pune that the power supply was very unpredictable which shouldn't be for a city that boasts to be a big industrial hub especially an IT hub. The water supply too was woeful but the way the housing construction was going on, I am sure unless some serious steps are taken much in advance, there will be a distress.
Hingewadi too is coming up as a big IT hub. Though many international companies are already operating from there, the infrastructure is still not in place. I tell you that the biggest attraction for the foregin companies to do business in India is cheap labour. The money being paid for a job in India is even lesser than what is paid for a similar job in China. If the corporation wanted to develop a big industrial hub, before calling the foreigners and even Indian companies they should have laid the infrastructure, but does any one care?
There is only one road connecting Magarpatta to the rest of the city and in the morning and evening office hours all traffic pours on it and there is a traffic jam.