Thursday, October 18, 2018

Bandra Local Press and Gambhir Singh of Manipur




But before I continue Happy Dasshera to all of you ..
I have a pain within me and I thought of bringing it out to exorcise it ..
I shoot chronicle Bandra ..where I live my urban chaotic backyard and in this documentation I have no agenda no politics I have been graciously adopted by Bandra .
The Gen Next my daughter my granddaughters Marziya and Nerjis are born in Bandra ..in a way they endorse my connection to Bandra .
My Bandra is in all its humility Bandra Bazar Road .
I came to live here after the 93 riots I lived as a nomad at Pali Naka Veronica Street Ranwar and finally De Monte Street .
When I shot the street video of alcoholic vagrant migrant Gambhir Singh I knew nothing about Manipur ,,he in his alcoholic stupor made me aware of Manipur forced it poetically on my consciousness .
I wont go into details my Gambhir Singh YouTube video went viral and Gambhir Singh became the biggest story ..it was a very simple story down to earth story of a lost mans reunion with his birthplace his family friends well wishers of Manipur .
He was saved by the love of the Manipuri people they collectively brought him back to Khumbohg Imphal .thanks to Patsoi police station and the officers Priyobratan Singh Yumnam and officer Amitabh Singh Arambam.
And Bandra Police Station .
The Gambhir Singh news spread like wild fire I gave interviews to online news agencies Der Spigel others .
I gave interviews to national news from Bandra Police station that helped in his well being and finding him.
I gave interviews from my house late in the night..
I was not hunting for a few minutes fame but Gambhir Singhs story to some extent was my own story too I was a incorrigible alcoholic for many years ..my wife and kids fought with my demon and pulled me ashore away from Yacht Canara and Janta .
Its been over 25 years I have not touched a drop of booze.
Fr Jaun a Christian Jesuit priest from St Peter Church Bandra helped cleanse me and Jesus and the Church have been part of my growing up..I am 68 years old almost .
Anyway after Gambhir Singh left I spoke to one of the local news of Bandra he did not do the story he was out of station I think if he did give it a mention I am not aware .
But what hit me the hardest was the other local news I spoke to the editor I know him since I came to Bandra in 1983 .
He was obnoxiously unmoved by the Gambhir Singh story ,,he said Gambhir Singh was not from Bandra and when I told him about the news of him online and in regional national papers ..he literally slapped me with a distasteful remark,, Gambhir Singh is a drunkard .
So what was Mary Magdalene Jesus transformed her from a prostitute to a Saint .
I am a Muslim bought up in Church environment I learnt Compassion I learnt humility humanity at home and through my Christian priestly mentors .
From that day till the present I broke of all ties with him.. he is not my role model he is just a hollow conceited man living in a world of his own biased imagination.
This is the truth irony of the local press of Bandra .
I think we do a better job than them as photographers chroniclers documentarists .
I am Christian in more ways than one and Bandra made me that and this is not about religion but culture and upbringing..
Thankfully I am not a skull cap Miya I have a skull and I need not cover it with narrow mindedness .
You will never see my posts pictures poetry or stories in newspapers .
I stay the fuck away from them.
Happy Morning ..
.

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