My first meeting at Jamtata on 9.4.2011
When I reached Jamtara in the early morning and was posting the Aayurvigyan Pragati in the small letter box, I saw an old person having red remnants of tika of the previous day and I asked whether he was Mahendra Choudhary (guessing he had come to receive me though his son had told me to call once I reached Jamtara) and he replied affirmatively and I was pleased that he had come to receive me. His number was given by Dr. B. K. Mishra and when I had called every time Mahendrababu’s son, a journalist had talked and had said that because his duty was from 2 pm he wished my time in forenoon and it also suited me as from there I could go to Dumka some 80 km by bus.
I asked Choudhary’s to take some flowers for my Puja from nearby and Malti as well as Dhatura’s flowers I quickly picked up.
His residence was hardly 5 minutes walk and there he asked my full introduction and purpose of the visit and he said that as every concern Maithil would be busy in examinations it would be proper to visit some retired and we went straightway to the house of C N Jha who was from Bhramarpur and there we met a Maithil working in Bank who was from Saharsa’s village. I had been to both villages and quickly proposed them for a unit of AMP at Jamtara which was a district of recent past(and hence not given due importance in George Grierson’s linguistic map).
The surrounding has a smell of nearby Bengal but it seemed to me a watershed zone for southern Maithili and Bangla, though I could not meet any native Maithil of that place. There were many Maithils in connection with service and they kept contact with Asansol and Giridih’s Maithili function though could not organize any for themselves at Jamtara.
My camera though could click a photo ,it had not power even to close the shutters before lens and hence we returned to the house of Mahendrababu immediately.
There he called a young man from Mauahi and he was designated as Gen.Secretary of AMP, Jamtara. His father was a grand scholar who died prematurely and hence he had to take up an assistant’s job in compensation to run the family. I had visited his village in October 1994 during my cycle Yatra.
He was also busy with examinations and he called us in the nearby college to talk to a teacher Ranjit Jha.
I took my bath; recited full Durgapath hurriedly after sandhya-tarpan-panchdevtapuja- I daily do, amid interrupted calls from Mumbai where my nephew was admitted with low WBC count and had IIT examination next day; the connectivity was poor and I listened my brother telling someone about me that I was wandering from Jamtara to Dumka, etc. The other call from Kolkata for a medical conference at Kalyani which was scheduled for the date 9-10th April but had to be cancelled for ill-preparation and the organized was asking me to visit the place where already I had been, the historic place named after Dr. Bidhan Chadra Raoy’s fiancée whom he could not marry and remained bachelor life long, for Maithils historic as there in 1954 in the Indian National Congress’s session Mithila state was demanded and 150+ Maihtils were taken in preventive custody at Asansol itself, my uncle was one of them; 4 still alive.
After food, it was revealed to me that the journalist son had not informed his journalist-cum-librarian father about my coming and Mahedrababu was on his regular walk that I had spotted him. He had not gone to receive me but what better would have been from such a Maithili lover to bestow his blessings and time for the work he liked. I saw a Mahakavi Vidyapati’s portrait in his house and he told me that he ould be attending Giridih’s Vidyapati parva on 23rd April 2011 and he had in past attended to Asansol’s such function also when eminent Mayanad Mishra had been guest here. I informed him that only some days back I had been to Asansol also and now a unit of AMP was there.
We reached the college and despite examination, some teachers(incidentally one state president of ABVP and the other town president, which revealed when I asked about the Prashikhan Varg’s notice on walls) listened to me and I informed them about the subject- of Mathematics- Leelawati’s sum in lyrics( of height and distance, in a pond on the side a monkey drinking water from the lotus raft(kamal nal) and with the degrees of shadow Leelawati was asked the height at which the monkey was).. and of pther of zoology, of which I was an honours student for few days before I shifted to botany fearing the drawings of animals I was poor in that) and many thing that some Maithil teachers came and soon a meeting with press, a clipping is in attachment.The press covered well of all (Hindustan, Ranchi express, Dainik Jagaran, prabhat Kahabar as reported) but one is here from net.(The other photos I may post afterwards.
Soon we returned and took my bag (still heavy because in small letter box only few journals could be posted) . I crossed the platform and took a rickshaw; a bus was waiting for me to start for Dumka where too my first meeting was the same day.