Students can also check the English Summary to revise with them during exam preparation. Anees Jung born is an Indian woman writer, journalist and columnist for major newspapers in India and abroad. She was born at Hyderabad and received education in Hyderabad and in the United States. Her parents were renowned poets. In this story, the author unveils the utter destitution of the ragpickers of Seemapuri and the bangle makers of Firozabad. This story describes the grinding poverty and traditions that compel the children to live a life of exploitation.
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The following is the summary of an excerpt from her book titled Lost Spring, stories of stolen childhood. Here she concludes the utter poverty and traditions which condemn these children to a life of exploitation.
She highlights the utter destitution of ragpickers of Seemapuri, and the bangle makers of Firozabad. The author came across Saheb every morning. She always found him searching for something in a heap of garbage. She told him that she was going to start a school.
Saheb was happy. He would go to her school. But she did not intend to start a school. But the poor boy wandered on roads along with other barefooted poor boys like him. The author talked to other companions of Saheb. One of the barefooted boys said his mother would not bring his chappals down from the shelf. One of them was wearing shoes though they did not match. Another boy who had never had foot wear, wished he had a pair of shoes. Many children walk barefoot. Some people argue that lack of money is not the reason.
It is a tradition to walk barefoot, but the author does not agree with them. She asserts that perpetual state of poverty is the real cause. Some children are lucky. Their prayer to get shoes has been granted. But the ragpickers remain barefoot. The ragpickers live in Seemapuri. So the author went there. Seemapuri is very close to Delhi but there is a world of difference between the two. They came there because their homes and fields were destroyed by storms.
They had nothing to live on. About 10, ragpickers live in Seemapuri. They live in mud structures with roofs made of tin and tarpaulin. They lack all civic amenities like sewage and running water. Living in Seemapuri enables them to cast their votes and food.
They move about and pitch their tents wherever they can find food, Ragpicking is their sole means of earning a livelihood. One winter morning the author finds Saheb standing by the fenced gate of a neighbourhood club. He is watching two youngmen playing tennis. They are dressed in white.
Saheb likes the game but he is content to watch it standing behind the fence. Saheb is wearing discarded tennis shoes that look strange over his discoloured shirt and shorts. For one who has walked barefoot, even shoes with a hole is a dream come true.
But tennis is out of his reach. This morning Saheb is on his way to the milk booth. In his hand is a steel canister. He works in a tea-stall. He is paid rupees and all his meals. Saheb is no longer his master. His face has lost the carefree look. The author comes across Mukesh in Firozabad. His family is engaged in bangle making, but Mukesh insists on being his own master. Firozabad is famous for its bangles. Every other family in Firozabad is engaged in making bangles. Families have spent generations working around furnaces, welding glass, making bangles for women.
None of them know that it is illegal for children like Mukesh to work in the glass furnaces with high. They slog their daylight hours, often losing the brightness of their eyes. If the law is enforced, it could get Mukesh and 20, children out of the hot furnaces. Mukesh took her to his house.
They went through stinking lanes choked with garbage. Families of bangle- makers lived there. Their houses had crumbling walls and wobbly doors. A frail young woman was cooking meals on a firewood stove. Her eyes were filled with smoke. She greeted the author with a smile. She was respected as the daughter-in-law of the family. The daughter-in-law covered her face with her veil as the custom demanded.
He had lost his eyes working on furnaces and polishing bangles. He had worked hard all his life. But he could not afford to send his two sons to school. He could only teach them the art of making bangles. He had built the house but could not repair it.
It was their destiny to suffer. But no man could change what was ordained by fate. In fact, her belief was shared by all. Savita, a young girl in a drab pink dress, sits along side an elderly woman. She is soldering pieces of glass. Her hands move mechanically like the tongs of a machine. Perhaps she does not know the sanctity of the bangles that she helps make. The old woman beside her has not enjoyed even one full meal in her entire life time.
Her husband is an old man with flowing beard. He knows nothing except bangles. He has made a house for the family to live in. He has a roof over his head. The author could see bangles everywhere. She saw boys and girls sitting with then parents before flickering oil lamps. They welded pieces of coloured glass she learnt. Their eyes got used to dark and they lost eyesight before they were adults.
At home, families worked hard all day before furnaces with high temperature. All the operations of bangle making cause blindness.
Generation after generation families of bangle-makers have been engaged in making o bangles. They live in poverty, they work hard, and die in poverty. Nothing has changed with the passage of time. They find themselves in the clutches of middlemen and money lenders. The police and the administration does not help them.
If they try to pull out of the vicious circle they are in trouble. The police beat them and put them in jail. Your email address will not be published. Leave a Comment Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published.
Lost Spring by Anees Jung – Summary
The following is the summary of an excerpt from her book titled Lost Spring, stories of stolen childhood. Here she concludes the utter poverty and traditions which condemn these children to a life of exploitation. She highlights the utter destitution of ragpickers of Seemapuri, and the bangle makers of Firozabad. The author came across Saheb every morning. She always found him searching for something in a heap of garbage. She told him that she was going to start a school. Saheb was happy.
Lost Spring – Important Questions
Lost Spring is written by a famous short-story writer Anees Jung. Here, she writes about the utter poverty and traditions which force these children to a life of exploitation. Anees Jung highlights the utter destitution of ragpickers of Seemapuri, and the bangle makers of Firozabad. What does Saheb look for in the garbage dumps?
Lost Spring Summary in English by Anees Jung
Spring is the Season of optimism and hope. From birth till late childhood, life for every child is almost the beginning of a bright and a shiny future. Childhood is featured by innocence, physical stamina and vitality, tremendous urge for the outdoors and a tremendous appetite for fun and play. Activities have no limits. It is also the stage for gaining skill and knowledge, learning and going to school. The lost spring by Anees Jung is an expression of national shame of children condemned to poverty and a life of exploitation.
Lost Spring: Stories of Stolen Childhood