During Durga Puja vacation, my mom’s friend and her family came in Kolkata from Daman. It was their 1st time visit in Kolkata. They were equally fascinated and enchanted at the festivity and celebrations of this Puja. After Dashami, as we have the tradition of ‘Bijoya –Dashami’s pranam and kola- kuli’ (hugging each other), they visited our house. The family had a little girl, Sweta, two years younger to me. While introducing her to Choco-Dadu, he became quite nostalgic at the sheer name of Daman. When I enquired him of the fact, he told that an incident happened in his life in Daman which has taught him a life time lesson. After we both insisted him, he promised us to tell after the lunch.
In the noon, when the parents were busy in chatting, we two, the children and two of our grandfathers went in the balcony. He started:-
“Goa, Daman, and Diu was incorporated into the Republic of India on December 19, 1961, by military conquest. I went on January’62 to have coverage of the political summit. It was held in Daman. The city was calm and quite, far away from din and bustle. It had many serene beaches. The place taught me that we should show our love while we can, while people need us. That is something I learnt from an incident in Daman.”
He then turned to Sweta and
asked her, “You must know The Somnath Mahadeva Temple.” She told that she knew
it very well and that too he has often visited there. Choco-Dadu went on, “The
Somnath Mahadeva Temple is an important place of worship in Daman.
Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple is situated in the village Dabhel. It is
believed that the Shivalinga was miraculously originated at its present place
on the request of a monk who was a true devotee of Shiva. This miraculous
incident is believed to have taken place in the19th century, which induced
people to hold this place as holy place and they built a small temple.”
Choco-Dadu carried on, “The
boy was there, seated exactly as before. I tried to avoid his gaze, assuming
that he would follow me. But he did not budge. On the other hand, he tried to
neglect my presence. I went inside the temple and came back. But the boy made
no effort to sell his garlands.