Breaking News! An Exclusive Interview With Chilai Khurd

Breaking News! An Exclusive Interview With Chilai Khurd
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By Fida Hussain Sodagar

Enjoy this beautiful season you have been blessed with. Don’t take this white blessing as a curse. This is natural beauty. It brings solace and peace. Winter will melt in the sunshine. Let the curse transform in the praise of nature”

Chilai Kalan ended. Chilai Khurd pierced. It snow carpeted Kashmir. I could not interview Chilai Kalan as he was busy in freezing the valley with a brutal chill. He declined to give an appointment for an interview. That proved to be a cumbersome task. I was reluctant to coerce chilai kalan to speak his heart out. I failed to persuade him. Luckily, I got hold of the Chilai Khurd as it rested in sunshine after bombing the valley with thick sheets of snow.

“Tanam Gulai Zi khayanban-e-Janat-e-Kashmir”
‘ The clay of my body is from the gardens of a paradise called Kashmir’

Chilai Khurd was kind enough to give an appointment despite his busy schedule. He sat on a chair. I had arranged a chair made of ice. Chilai khurd has asked for that while approving the appointment. I feel more comfortable on the icy chair he said. His words were touching my ears like the breezes of Antarctica. The Interview began.
Me: Sir, You had a powerful start unexpectedly, why so?
Chilai Khurd (C.K): You see people take me for granted. They think I am sub-ordinate to Chilai Kalan. This time I thought to prove my worth. I entered with a bang. I inundated the valley with a thick white blanket. That was unexpected but not impossible. After all, I am also a part of a winter. I am not alien. Older people know more about me than the younger generations. People have now forgotten my power. I too want to enjoy my days to its fullest before I disappear with the entry of the chill baccha.
Me: So, Does it mean that you resorted to politics as you wanted to be more powerful than Chilai Kalan?
C.K: I must say, yes I played Politics. But, good politics and not the bad one. I have my right to show my strength. The snow is also one of the legacies of nature. It is important to have good snowfall to avoid the scarcity of water in the hot summer. It is also needed to keep the fauna in oceans and rivers alive. I have to take care of all this too.
Me: Sir, People of the valley are cursing you. They expected you to be humble not ruthless?
C.K: Smiling! Cursing is in the blood of people of the valley. They curse everything anytime. In summer, when there will scarcity of water, they will curse me again for not being more harsh. That is the law people have innovated here. The tourists from other states and countries are praising this beauty,
Me: Sir, Who should we blame for all the troubles this snow has brought to us?
C.K: Blame Administration not me. They fail in everything. Administration remains in deep slumber while I remain awake day and night. I do my work fully. But they don’t. They repeat the lies. I am working hard to freeze these days. I do it as I am made for it. But , the administration lacks the commitment to counter my strength.
Now, the Chilai Khurd seemed to be in hurry.
Me: Sir, Any message for the people of Kashmir?
C.K: I will quote the couplet of Dr. Allama Iqbal to sum up myself:
Tanam Gulai Zi khayanban-e-Janat-e-Kashmir,
‘ The clay of my body is from the gardens of a paradise called Kashmir’
Enjoy this beautiful season you have been blessed with. Don’t take this white blessing as a curse. This is natural beauty. It brings solace and peace. Winter will melt in the sunshine. Let the curse transform in the praise of nature.
I thanked Chilai Khurd. By this time my face had burned red with the glacial cold. The bitter cold had encrypted in my cells and I rushed to grab a kangri. In the meantime, Chilai Khurd got back to his job.

The author holds a P.G in Mass Communication and Journalism and writes on various issues. He can be reached at: ummushaanu@gmail.com.