On Aug,31-2008,around,6pm we all gathered at Rotary Bhawan to pay our Homage to Niranjan Mohanty Uncle,a Poet,Critic &Teacher.I had known him when I was in Berhampur,Orissa.For me he was my Papa (Dr.Sailendra Narayan Tripathy),who's also a Poet,and Teacher's Guru and poet friend.
It was on May-04-2008,that I last met Niranjan Uncle at Pattamundai,Orissa,India.He had come all the way from Kolkatta,as he is a Professor in English at ShantiNiketan University there.I accompanied Papa amidst tight security WITH A MY SECURITY OFFICERS SCANNING AROUND THE WHOLE OF PLACES I had to travel,if it was safe for me travel after the Orissa Govt realosed there was threat to my life following a gangster fan's mad obsession for me leading to tragedies.
Anywaz followinf the fan's obsession for me n' his killing a renowned celebrity Biranchi Das,coach of littlte Boy wonder of Orissa,India Buddhia Singh.People and media can be brutal at times to celebrities.I became a victim for being a celebrity,stories regardin me were splashed across media channels n' tabloids with irresponsible coverage on me.It was earth-shattering,to fuel my inner trurmoil,my friends n' colleagues had deserted my Ship like rats.Dat was excruciating.One day I'm flavour of the month next day I'm declared ruined,finished.I certainly am learning to cope with the ups and downs of life and public life.
Well wat was sad is I had no one to look upto,as I'm the first in my family to have joined the ranks of Celebrities and when my personal tragedies seemed to become the grapevine of every gossipcircle,it did hurt me badly.Comeon I cant take speculations.
Anywaz I had taken to hibernation following my lodging of an f.i.r against my stalker on Mar-05-2008,and then kidnapping iof my friends brother on April-09-2008,where my stalker declared he would let go off the boy if I pleaded to him or agreed to marry him.How bizzare?Wat followed next kind of sealed my fate with Biranchi's cold blooded murder.
Alrite following which I was shattered with my life being hounded by media.As if that was not enuf,my colleagues cold shoulder was devastating me.I wanted them to stand by me n' console me but hey why shud they help sumone engrossed in controversies.So I had to console my heart which had gone to deep depression.Thank Goodness I had timely help and support of a ecclectic support system,who did their best to lift my spirits.So wen my Ppa asked me to join him to attend the intellectuals conference to be held at Pattamundai.As I had a case of damaged feelings I wasnt sure if I should be joining the intellectuals n' elite who had chosen to stay calm and ignore and turn a cold shoulder to my woes.Hey I had known most of them since I was a kid,coz they were my Papa's friends,few his teachers and etal.Anywaz I've learned on not to expect anything from anybody.My life had become a regular feature in the dailies and a constant topic of discussion and ridicule among the coffe tables and gossip enthusiasts.
I summed up courage and went ahead to boost my Papa's morale,who had been also been recieving few cold shoulders.Anywaz I told myself may be I'm depressed and feeling low but not dead.I should be with my Papa wen he would giving his version on Metaphysical poets.And the icing on the cake was Jayanta Mohapatro Uncle,Niranjan Mohantry Uncle,My Papa were to speak on theses topics of English literature which is so dear to my heart.Wen I walked down the college gates of Pattamundai college wat was amusing is all of a sudden the college which was reverberating with noisy discussion relapsed into deathly silence.I was kindda very embarassed at the gawky stares that Iwas recieving and to top it few guys chose to walk out of the college premises coz they didnt appreciate my presence there.Thank Goodness I didnt break down there with all theses drama.Though I was felicitated by few students in the Principal's office yet I cudnt smile heartily at my fans asking for my autographs.As few nosy people suggested it was a bad idea altogether for me to have joined the acting industry and for a english honors topper becoming an actress was a tabboo for most of them.It was my turn to answer bak wid a cold shoulder .They wouldny stop criticuising my decisions as to why I chose not to go for my further studies in the states or london,why on earth did I chose glamour world.I dont understand why people like discussing 'why's'' and ''why not''.Why cant they accept watever that has happened choose to find a solution.Anywaz there creepy discussions involving me annoyed me to the extent of driving me sick at their idisyncracies.
So next I chose to take a walk down the college coz it reminded me of my last visit to the college as a Guest of Honor attending their annual college function.Everybody I met chose to refrain from my inner turmoil and chose to formally ask how yu bin?,I guess wishing I didnt linger around them lest my maniac stalker might learn of their acquaintance with me and they could be in danger.I cud smell their hypocritical smiles n' chose to walk out.It was Niranjan Uncle with his cigar in his mouth,exhaling rings of stress away,who breathed many good senses into me with his outburst of pearls of wisdom.He certainly has a knack for reading between lips,he could sense the havoc within me which others chose to ignore going by my lovely smiles.Anywaz Uncle Niranjan with his coolest demeanour suggeated me to keep my calm coz that was wat God's (Jagannath's)will.He said,''Leslie You are being put into this test,coz Jagannath wants to see how strong You are.Can You hanle and endure adversities?''That was good,further he added,''Sita was put to test too and she came out unscathed.The good to prove how good they are have to undergo various tests.And wat I really appereciate is You have shown admirable grace and dignity under all these circumstances.''
With a twinkle in his eye he added,''My friends and colleagues in Kolkatta who have been shocked to learn of Biranchi's death,often ask me do You know Biranchi,and do You know Leslie?wen I told them that Yoyu are Sailendra's daughter they are full of appreciation and admiration for your strength of character and guts.You are being referred to as the Helen of Troy of 2Ist century,isnt that amazing?''I was deeply flattered I felt good after the pep talk,he also suggested,''read Lawrence,Byron,Arundhati,Tasleema,Gandhi,these people have endured a lot of suffering coz they chose to speak their minds.They endured lot of pain,yet they chose to stick to their morals and spoke the truth,dont try to escape from pain,face it.wen yu speak the truth,its a path full of thorns not as rosy as life of liars and corrupt.''
''and remember wenever you think you need a pep talk,i'm just a phone call away'',he spoke with his sunny disposition.Wat I seemingly come to cope and accept is he has left us all.Now who do I speak to wen I need a pep talk.
It wasnt only me missing him and shattered wen I learnt on July-28-2008 of his bidding us a final silent farewell,disappearin forever.
So yesterday we all gathered together to pay tribute to Uncle Niranjan.Uncle Jayant,Uncle Sitakant,Uncle Himanshu,Uncle J.K.Patnaik,Uncle Jatin Nayak,Uncle Prafulla Mohanty,Uncle Dinanath ,Uncle Ramahari Jena ,Uncle Ramakant Mishra and many creme dela creme of the intellect worl graced their presence and spoke of the Niranjan Mohanty effect on their lives.I guess Uncle Niranjan shall be glad to see how many lives he has touched wid his unwithering compassions,never-rancouring-against-anybody attitude,with his reckless lifestyle.Its not only me I guess who has been touched by his sunny disposition and positive attitude there are many others whose lives have been affected by Niranjan Uncle.I guess God Amighty fell for his coolest child and finally took him away at 55.
May his soul rest in peace.Niranjan Mohanty(1953-2008)