different categories of passengers.Men women and children all were traveling in the intercity train plying between Khulna and Dhaka.The name of the train was very special,coined after the name of a river, The Chitra.
There were women of different ages and characteristics.There were two women sitting on my right chairs.One was a mother traveling with her young girl child,the other was a married young woman with her husband.These two ladies were chatting with nice gesture.The train stopped at Darshana and another stream of passengers entered the compartment. A family with a slim woman,a cute little girl and handsome young husband took seats in the vacant places near me.The new woman befriended with other women too quickly.She said her problem in travels.Her vomiting tendency was very serious.The bad smell of smoking or abnormal odor around her could trigger her vomiting.
The women dwelt on various subjects.But at one point,the discussion was concentrated on the single issue.The treatment of mother-in-laws was the focus now.The three women narrated how their in-laws behaved,discriminated and exploited them.They all expressed freely that they were in chain.More women of young to middle ages joined the group discussion.
Stories of life were emerged one after one.One new entrant sadly described how badly she was discriminated.Her mother-in-law allowed her daughter to date and party days after days but compelled her to day and night in home like a maidservant.Another woman burst out in anger and informed how her mother-in-law tortured her to bring money from her father.It seemed that there were endless emotional stories in the hearts of the women.They have found a safe place to release their pain and agony here in the compartment of a moving train.
The train stopped again for a while at a small station.A group of passengers entered the room and a little stir was observed for some time.
There was an older woman among the newest passengers.She could find a place near the group of daughter-in-laws.She took some snacks and said her prayer.Then she sat steadily and looked around to sense the discussion.
She joined the discussion and told that she was also a mother-in-law and did never behave badly with the daughter-in-laws.The younger women appreciated her and agreed with the older woman that all daughter-in-laws were not treated badly by their mother-in-laws.But they insisted that things should improve as the status of women was elevated around the world.The older woman was happy to be accepted by the younger women.She described the natures of her daughter-in-laws.She also pointed out that the fate of the girl is predestined.She has to move to the family of her husband.The environment and mentality of the members of the family of her husband may not be very comfortable for the girl who lived with her parents in caress and love.So,she may feel trouble in adjusting with the new environment and individuals.It is better for her to adjust as soon as possible.
The younger women argued that the mother-in-law has a responsibility to treat the daughter-in-law like her own daughter and teach her how she should adjust with the changed situation.The older woman agreed.However,she told that some mother-in-laws really treat the daughter-in-laws badly which creates the sense in them that they are slaves.Her statement made the other women to be vocal again.Some of them told that they were really in chain by such mother-in-laws.
The discussion continued with more stories tabled for consideration and criticism.In the mean time,the train reached the last stoppage.The women wished each other.They are relaxed and happy now than ever as they could release the pain of chained life with their fellows in a moving train.