“15th December’s night 10:30 PM, Burari (Pepsi road): My friend and I had to attend one of my colleague’s marriage ceremony. Before this, we were at our daily theatre rehearsals, which ran late till 8:30 PM and that’s why we were late to the venue. Burari was new to us and hence we were worried about our way back and to top it, the availability of public transport near the venue was also very less. We wrapped up things at the wedding in a hurry and left for the metro station. We realised that it was late and metro station being more than 4 KM away, there was a chance that we could miss the last metro.
Suddenly we saw a car which was about to leave. We knocked on the mirror and asked for lift “Bhaiya hamein main road tak lift de denge” (Will you please give us a lift till the main road?). There was no street light on the road and hence we were unable to see inside the car. On closely observing we saw a lady on the driver seat, she must have been 30-32 years old. She was on speaker phone talking to her husband. She agreed and asked what do you do? We replied honestly and sat inside, suddenly her husband on the call said-“Aise kisi ko mat baithaya karo” (Don’t just let anyone get in the car). I was shocked because I had never seen myself with that lens but the truth of the hour was that we were a complete stranger to her.
I realised that if we analyse the situation, two unknown boys at approx. 11 PM asking for a lift, they could be criminals, murderer or rapist. Seriously was she making a blunder? I told her, your husband is right, I have seen many such cases in “TV Seriels. She replied softly yet confidently- “Bachche hi to ho, main Gargi College me professor hoon, Dekh ke bta sakti hun kaun achha hai aur kaun bura.” (You are kids. I am a professor at Gargi College. I can tell at a glance who is good and who isn’t) What would you take? I have no cash, no purse & no jewellery. I was about to ask “what about your honour?” but I controlled myself.
I felt she was also aware of the situation and yet had shown confidence in us. I changed the subject and started introducing myself. I felt that there was a bond that was created between us, maybe a bond of humanity, it was like we knew each other since long. Maybe she was like a friend or an elder sister; I don’t have words to explain that bond. She asked us “Where do you want to deboard?” and then also guided us on how to reach the metro station from our drop point. Post that, she thought about something and said- I will drop you to metro station. We requested her not to go out of the way to drop us, and that we’ll manage. Her reply was humble yet so strong – “It will take only 5 minutes extra for me.” It would have been just five mins, but a stranger sacrificing her five mins at an odd time for us is an inspiration for humanity. She said that it would be difficult for us to find transportation at that hour.
After deboarding the car, I asked her name, and when I heard her name, I started laughing. She asked- “why did you laugh?” I said this name reminds me of some fond memories. After bidding goodbye, that brave & confident lady went her way. The very next day 16th December(Nirabhaya) made me realise the bravery and honesty of the woman I had met the day before.
Since the incident two questions have haunted my mind:
1. Will I give a lift to any unknown person at an odd hour, after seeing what’s happening around us nowadays?
2. Will our society let her and her belief survive?”
Submitted By – Nishant Kumar
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