Brahmapur; The city of Silk and People with Golden Heart

Brahmapur; The city of Silk and People with Golden Heart

 

Brahmapur is a city of Odisha which has a moderate population of around 4,00,000. The city has the attitude of Delhi, the beauty of Kolkatta, the stillness of Kerala and the chaos of Mumbai. Apart from being a business hub, it is full of tourist places. Gopalpur beach is one of the finest beaches of India that one must visit during their visit to Odisha. If you are religiously inclined then you can visit the nearby famous temples like Taratarini (A Shaktipeetha), Siddha-Bhairavi, Panchama, Mahuri-Kalua and other numerous temples. There are so many visiting places that one must explore in a trip to Brahmapur, Odisha. Because of its famous silk saris, it is also referred as the Silk City of India. I am extremely proud to be part of such a beautiful city.

Beside the entire tourist thing, there is one more thing about the city that I am proud of! It is the people of the city. Like any other big cities it has a mix of all kind of people from different race, religion and caste. But the common thread among all of them is their attitude towards humanity. Here people are very empathetic about the fellow people. Well, it’s not that the city does not have any bad guys; in fact some of the prominent criminals are arrested within the close surrounding of the city, which includes the infamous Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda. But what I meant to write is, in general people here are very cordial and empathetic towards their fellow human beings.

My Experience with Brahmapur People

It happened during my last trip to Brahmapur. I was having a blast at my brother’s place. It was a happening night and I slept a little later than the usual sleep time. But when I woke up in the morning there was something which disturbed me. My Aunt’s face look worried and my Bhabhi was suppressing her sobs with a great effort. I got tensed and asked them the reason. I came to know that, my brother who went to a place in the district of Koraput to attend a wedding; is now untraceable! His mobile is switched off. Bhabhi got in touch with the relatives where my brother was suppose to reach some 4 hours back and discovered that he has not reached there yet. Though I was worried, I tried to show a brave face and consoled Bhabhi saying it could be network issue! But then I got the shock of my life when my Bhabhi revealed that the place where my brother was supposed to reach is actually a naxalite area. This reason made me scared, but I said “it may have happened that the driver may have asked them to switch off the cells, as it’s a naxalite area. Several calls were made to several people but everything went in vain. No one has reached to the wedding house.

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It’s almost 10 am when we (my mom, my sister and me) went to temple. I am not religious but mom said, prayer is the best thing that can be done in such situation. I tagged along with them so that I won’t be referred as an atheist. While way back to home I met my brother on the way! Whoa! I did not know; my mom’s prayer will work so fast. I prepared myself for getting a good lecture from my mom about the religious belief. But that can wait. Now the good thing is; my brother is back, safely. I asked him how come you are here, aren’t you attending the wedding? What was wrong? Questions overloaded by me, mom and my sister. He said it’s a long story. I’ll let you know once I’m back. I asked him where he is going. He said for a fight and he winked. I demanded to accompany him. He said cool and tease me that, the other people will get scared by seeing my bodyguard.

The Nightmare At Forest

On our way he said I’m going to meet the D.T.M. of the bus stand. Why? Because last night they were stuck at a place inside the forest; all the passengers were there in the bus. It’s almost an hour but the bus did not move an inch. Then few of the passengers got down and asked the conductor what’s the matter. He said, the bus has broken down and it’s not going anywhere. Where’s the driver? Well, he has gone. Gone??? Without informing us anything! Leaving the passengers in this remote area? The passengers when asked about the alternate arrangement for their trouble he simply informed that you all get down & take another bus. I was about to compare the situation with a metro like Mumbai, where I stay. Definitely, at Mumbai this situation will never arise. My brother continued his tale of adventures. When the passengers demanded that, they have paid money and it is the responsibility of the bus owner to arrange something for us. He simply said I can’t do anything. Finally, some passengers get irritated and demanded back their money. A swift response came from the bus conductor; “you can go to the counter and collect the money”.

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After much difficulty, they find a bus which was returning from the other end. So, my brother came here back. On the bus stop, he went to the counter and narrated the whole thing. And with all audacity and no sympathy; the person on the counter asked all the questions like which bus, where it got stuck and all that! I mean what kind of system is this? Your bus has been stuck and you are unaware of it! And to add on what kind of service are you giving us? In fact, it should be you, the one who must have got informed first about this rather you are asking them about the incident! It’s not a matter of 500 bucks but it’s a matter of your responsibility. What if something would have gone terribly wrong? Definitely, it is not how people at Mumbai react. Then my brother explained me how the passengers were screaming and shouting and yet he didn’t pay anyone their money back. He asked him and the other passengers to meet the D.T.M. So, we are about the meet the person in charge. I braced myself to give him a dose of his life.

The Man In The Charge

Amiya Mishra - D.T.M. of the Berhampur Bus Stand
Mr. Amiya Mishra – D.T.M. of the Berhampur Bus Stand

Finally, we reached at his office. We waited for few seconds or a minute as he was busy in a meeting. Then he called us in. It was a small cabin and gives a perfect picture of our Govt. workplaces. A tall and fair person wearing spectacle was sitting on the chair. He enquired about the situation and my brother explained him everything without losing his cool. He thought for a second and asked how the guy at counter looked like? My brother explained (I don’t want to go into that details). Then he rang a number at once and asked for that particular person. I was amazed as he knew his staff so well. Then he asked him with a tone of authority; “A person had come to you and he explained you the situation…”. It seems the person on the other end tried to say something but he interrupted him and said “You need not say anything. I’m sending him and you just pay the amount. You need to understand that if a passenger is coming to you he must have been through a lot. You were not there. He was there and he must have faced the problem.” We thanked the D.T.M. and went from there. I was so happy with his quick decision skill and the way he handled the situation. I couldn’t stop myself by asking his name. He laughed and said what will you do with it? I smiled and said, “I am from Mumbai and I rarely meet people like you, who knows how to handle customer grievance”. He said politely with a smile; “Amiya Kumar Mishra”. We went again to the bus depot. He was unable to make an eye contact. He just looked at the ticket from my brother and paid the amount deducting a few bucks. I couldn’t stop myself laughing. I was laughing all the way to way back home remembering the face of the person at bus stop; who was completely at loss of word.

And when I reached at home, my niece who was also with us in all these time; was busy enacting the fight. You know I went to a place with Papa while returning from school and then slowly a fight started. That uncle was saying you listen to me and Papa said no you listen to me. I just saw my brother smiling and everybody started laughing. And I was still wondering, what if every person who was given a responsibility behaves like Mr. Amiya Mishra.

 

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