I often get into this observant mode when I am travelling. Today I have been closely observing people and their conversations at the airport. Of you were here you could listen to three general conversations in groups or phone or between a mom and son. 

1. “Khawa dawa thik kore korish” (eat well) told a dad to his son just outside the entrance. No wonder everyone says a Bengali person thinks about food first and then anything else on earth. 

2. “Nijer kheyal rekho, mach tach pele kheyo, shabdhane theko” (take care of yourself, eat fish if you get any, stay carefully) told a teary eyed mom bidding adieu to her son. Mom’s become a little extra emotional at airports and train stations. My mom is no different and always has moist eyes every time she comes to see me off. 

3. “Mon kharap koro na, jete to hobei“, told the girl on phone, sitting next to me at the departure lounge. Which means, don’t feel upset, I had to go,no other option. 

Now these are some regular conversations probably, but what makes you sit and think is the population of people travelling away from this city or state to other states for work! That population is astounding. In Bangalore alone there is an enormous population of Bengalis – all bright students working in private sector. All away from their family from their hometown because the politicians in their home state have not left any option for them. They are living in some Stone Age and is content with the city’s past glory. They create ruckus when some one wants to invest in the state and set up a factory and instead is just happy with bringing ShahRukh Khan for festivals, or winning IPL. The state heads are busy with the film stars and artistes than thinking about creating jobs for the youth. They can’t get Indian industries to invest in the state, but are flying to Singapore to get investment!!! Such is the apathy. But still it’s my city. And I am happy every time I am back. But will the youth stay silent as always and migrate somewhere else? That’s something to ponder off. 

Finally my flight is ready to board. So signing off. See you tomorrow. 

Tina Basu

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