Namdeo Dhasal’s Poem

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Namdeo Dhasal’s iconic poem in Dilip Chitre’s translation:

Cruelty

I am a venereal sore in the private part of language.
The living spirit looking out
of hundreds of thousands of sad, pitiful eyes
Has shaken me.
I am broken by the revolt exploding inside me.
There’s no moonlight anywhere;
There’s no water anywhere.
A rabid fox is tearing off my flesh with its teeth;
And a terrible venom-like cruelty
Spreads out from my monkey-bone.

Release me from my infernal identity.
Let me fall in love with these stars.
A flowering violet has begun to crawl towards horizons.
An oasis is welling up on a cracked face.
A cyclone is swirling in irreducible vulvas.
A cat has commenced combing the hairs of agony.
The night has created space for my rage.
A stray dog has started dancing in the window’s eye.
The beak of an ostrich has begun to break open junk.
An Egyptian carrot is starting to savour physical reality.
A poem is arousing a corpse from its grave.
The doors of the self are being swiftly slammed shut.
There’s a current of blood flowing through all pronouns now.
My day is rising beyond the wall of grammar.
God’s shit falls on the bed of creation.
Pain and roti are being roasted in the same tandoor’s fire.
The flame of the clothless dwells in mythologies and folklore.
The rock of whoring is meeting live roots;
A sigh is standing up on lame legs;
Satan has started drumming the long hollowness.
A young green leaf is beginning to swing at the door of desire.
Frustration’s corpse is being sewn up.
A psychopathic muse is giving a shove to the statue of eternity.
Dust begins to peel armour.
The turban of darkness is coming off.
You, open your eyes: all these are old words.
The creek is getting filled with a rising tide;
Breakers are touching the shoreline.

Yet, a venom-like cruelty spreads out from my monkey-bone.

It’s clear and limpid: like the waters of the Narmada river.

Read an interview with Dilip Chitre on Dhasal here.

Street Fight Poet

The words are a spume of raw fire — degradation, obscenity, filth and horror rage untamed; there’s a hymn to hear when they’re spent. Nothing cushions in the world of Namdeo Dhasal, poet feared and revered, founder of the Dalit Panthers, comrade of controversy, born ‘untouchable’. Selections from thirty years of his work, 1972 to 2006, brilliantly translated by fellow poet Dilip Chitre have been released by Navayana, an award-winning publishing house, dedicated to bringing out titles for social change. Dilip Chitre and Navayana’s S. Anand talked to Shyama Haldar about the exhilarations of finding Dhasal.

Photo and poems reproduced with permission from Navayana.
photo by Henning Stegmuller

Like most Dalit leaders, Namdeo knows they will never come to power on their own. Mayawati had to compromise — the elephant’s become Ganesha

Dilip, you’ve been a friend, translator and champion of Namdeo Dhasal for over four decades. These poems, they rip through you — how is it they aren’t better known?

Dilip Chitre (DS): Namdeo Dhasal is known in Marathi as a major poet and is almost unknown beyond the language — he’s won awards and things like that, but very few critics have dared to delve into his works and say exactly what it is about him that makes him great. While I have no doubt that he is one of the world’s best 20th century poets, he hasn’t been translated even into other Indian languages because he is extremely difficult to translate.

There is, of course, the problem that India does not have any publishers worth their salt consistently publishing or promoting poetry, even in the English language. In fact, there are actually more publishers in the Indian languages promoting poetry than in English. In English, you have to be very close to your grave to be acceptable to most of your contemporaries, and then they may publish your collected poems. Then along comes this niche publisher who reads four translations of Dhasal in a magazine — Tehelka, as it so happened — and he contacts the translator, gets after him: do you have more?

S. Anand (SA): This was around the Sahitya Akademi’s golden jubilee in 2004; they gave Namdeo a lifetime achievement award. I didn’t know Dilip was on the committee, I just read this article he wrote. Navayana was very young then, and had never done poetry, but this was something I knew I wanted to publish. I hunted all over for a way to contact Dilip, googled madly, and somehow found his number.

That’s something the poems do, read just a few lines and you know you’re with an enormously exciting writer.

DC: And that’s what translation is about, sharing excitement. You can either share it in a very quiet, sober, scholarly way, or you can share it in a poetic way. Now, I am a practicing poet in two languages, English and Marathi, and I am committed to translation — I’ve been translating poetry from Marathi to English for the last fifty years, poetry from the 13th century right up to the 21st. With Namdeo, I found that he has it in him to be considered one of the world’s major poets, and the only way I could substantiate that claim was to bring the best of his poetry to the notice of Anglophone readers.

Namdeo’s a lumpen, as he describes himself, with no assets except poetry — he sometimes says he hurls his poems like stones, so they’re a street-fighting weapon as well. To convey the idea that poets can come from anywhere, that they bring from wherever they come something to the surface of the world — that’s a role he plays exceptionally well. Namdeo’s also an activist, and he’s been a good activist. But like most Dalit leaders, small-time and big-time, he knows he lives in India where Dalits cannot, by themselves, form a government anywhere. They can only act as a pressure group…

Namdeo Dhasal: Poet of the Underworld
Translated by
Dilip Chitre

Navayana
180 pp; Rs 350

SA: Not until Mayawati.

DC: Even Mayawati has had to make that compromise with her ‘rainbow coalition’ — the elephant has been turned into Ganesha. These things will continue to happen, but let us not be deceived about the facts of the Dalit situation. No minority in India can ever come to power — and, in fact, there is no majority, not even the Hindus are an absolute majority, thank God. We are a land of minorities. And here is a minority voice, someone from the urban dispossessed, uprooted from his rural place, planted in the megapolis of Mumbai at the age of seven to grow up in that urban underbelly that no one notices. In the 19th century, the French poet Baudelaire wrote about Paris, wrote The Flowers of Evil, and started the trend of modern urban poetry. Baudelaire talked about decadence and so on, but he himself was a bourgeois trying to become a déclassé. Namdeo Dhasal is a lumpen, that is the difference, he’s already there. We also know that, although he was not dealing with cities and so forth, Dante in his Commedia was dealing with his contemporary world through the metaphorical frame of Paradise, Limbo and Hell. So you start with Inferno, you come to Purgatorio, and then you are elevated to Paradiso, in Dante’s framework. Now, here’s a person who gives that epic, mytho-poeic quality to Mumbai, and installs at the heart of his universe Golpitha, the red light neighbourhood of central Mumbai. It is an impenetrable world unless it can be illuminated by someone like Namdeo, illuminated from within. Golpitha, which was published in 1972, is, to my mind, a milestone in world poetry.

Cruelty

 

I am a venereal sore in the private part of language.
The living spirit looking out
of hundreds of thousands of sad, pitiful eyes
Has shaken me.
I am broken by the revolt exploding inside me.
There’s no moonlight anywhere;
There’s no water anywhere.
A rabid fox is tearing off my flesh with its teeth;
And a terrible venom-like cruelty
Spreads out from my monkey-bone.

Release me from my infernal identity.
Let me fall in love with these stars.
A flowering violet has begun to crawl towards horizons.
An oasis is welling up on a cracked face.
A cyclone is swirling in irreducible vulvas.
A cat has commenced combing the hairs of agony.
The night has created space for my rage.
A stray dog has started dancing in the window’s eye.
The beak of an ostrich has begun to break open junk.
An Egyptian carrot is starting to savour physical reality.
A poem is arousing a corpse from its grave.
The doors of the self are being swiftly slammed shut.
There’s a current of blood flowing through all pronouns now.
My day is rising beyond the wall of grammar.
God’s shit falls on the bed of creation.
Pain and roti are being roasted in the same tandoor’s fire.
The flame of the clothless dwells in mythologies and folklore.
The rock of whoring is meeting live roots;
A sigh is standing up on lame legs;
Satan has started drumming the long hollowness.
A young green leaf is beginning to swing at the door of desire.
Frustration’s corpse is being sewn up.
A psychopathic muse is giving a shove to the statue of eternity.
Dust begins to peel armour.
The turban of darkness is coming off.
You, open your eyes: all these are old words.
The creek is getting filled with a rising tide;
Breakers are touching the shoreline.

Yet, a venom-like cruelty spreads out from my monkey-bone.

It’s clear and limpid: like the waters of the Narmada river.

Anand, I’d like to go back to the point about Namdeo as a Dalit leader. What do you make of the issue of his aligning with the Shiv Sena?

SA: I really get cheesed off when people start talking about Namdeo Dhasal with the words, ‘Oh, but hasn’t he joined the Shiv Sena?’ It’s like people read a lot of newspapers and very little poetry…

He Takes Mumbai and installs at the heart of his universe Golpitha, the red light district, a world impenetrable unless illuminated from within

DC: And he’s not with the Shiv Sena, this is factually incorrect. The Dalit Panthers supported the Shiv Sena for a while, and then in the last municipal elections in Mumbai, they supported the cpm. That’s the 360 degree world of Indian politics — why isolate Namdeo Dhasal? Just because he’s a Dalit? Why isolate Mayawati? Just because she’s a Dalit? I think there’s high hypocrisy at work here, upper-caste, upper-class, journalistic hypocrisy. And for people to use this to obscure the fact that he is one of India’s major poets, it makes me furious.

SA: He writes for Saamna, I’m told — I don’t read Marathi. And, yes it’s a thin line, being with the Shiv Sena and writing for their paper — but, again, it’s what you write that matters. I’ve been told Namdeo speaks his mind in his Saamna essays, and Bal Thackeray lets him. It’s not a Namdeo I’m interested in at all, though, right now. Are we to divorce him from forty years of his work and say, ‘Oh, now he is with the Shiv Sena’?

Namdeo’s wife is a Muslim, and the daughter of a Communist…

DC: Who was a well-known balladeer, Amar Sheikh. Mallika is about ten or fifteen years younger than Namdeo, and is an outstandingly good poet in Marathi in her own right. They’ve had a very turbulent marriage; in fact, Mallika wrote an autobiography, I Want to Smash Myself, about their relationship, how much she disapproved of his Panther movement, how difficult it was to live with this man, an activist with cases against him all over Maharashtra, many of them implicating him in crimes he did not commit. At the time they married, he was constantly underground, they were hounded from place to place.

Modern Marathi literature has this constellation of outstanding contemporaries: Vilas Sarang, Kiran Nagarkar, Namdeo Dhasal, Arun Kolatkar, yourself. There’s this strain of defiance, rage and relentlessness that runs through this group — where is it coming from?

DS: Well, one of the things that’s common to all of us is that we are rooted in the same metropolis, we are very much Mumbai writers, all of us are rooted in the maddening cosmopolitan mix of Mumbai. We have our different modes of approaching it — for example, in Vilas’ case, he is consciously located in the existentialist tradition of Camus and the nihilist tradition of Samuel Beckett; Kafka has also been a very significant influence on him. You cannot say that about Arun Kolatkar. Kiran Nagarkar has a variety of narrative voices, but you can also read the European influence in Kiran very distinctly. Putting Namdeo aside, Arun, Vilas, Kiran and myself are all bilingual writers who practice writing in English as well as Marathi. Namdeo is monolingual, he writes in Marathi, speaks in Marathi. He doesn’t read any French or Spanish or German or English, for that matter. Where does his surrealism come from, where does his existentialism come from? It’s something native, it’s part of his self-education. He is a self-educated, dispossessed Dalit, fighting his way up into the literary world of the megapolis. Everything he’s read, he’s read in Marathi translation, and if he hears of someone whose work is untranslated, he’ll say, ‘Who is this person, tell me more about him, will you translate him for me?’

Translating someone like Namdeo is, in a sense, like Method acting — you have to find a space for him inside you, make room, and then act it out

SA: There’s something I’ve wanted to ask you, Dilip. His political followers — as you’ve told me — when he’s in hospital, there are some two hundred Panthers outside. Do they read his poetry, do they have an understanding of it? Or is there a split between Namdeo the poet, and this other, political, person?

DC: I don’t see it as a split in Namdeo; it’s the one-sidedness of his multiple audiences. His Dalit audience sees him as a charismatic leader, but they may not possess the literary sensibility demanded by his poetry. He’s not someone like Gadar, who will write these very simplistic poems, and some of them rank bad poetry, and express revolutionary sentiments and rouse people and so on. A middle-class person approaching his poetry does not know the Dalit situation, he does not even want to know. So he misses part of the poetry.

SA: So, is there’s no perfect audience for Namdeo’s Dhasal’s poetry? Nobody who’d have the sensibilities of his politics and be able also to appreciate his poems?

DC: Turn the shirt around and the shirt asks if it fits the audience as well. The shirt poem…

SA: I’d like to read the last three lines from that one, ‘Speculations on a Shirt’:

A human being shouldn’t become so spotless / One should leave a few stains on one’s shirt / One should carry on oneself a little bit of sin.

The Day She Was Gone

 

The day she was gone,
I painted my face black.
I slapped the savage schizophrenic wind hard in its face.
I picked up small pieces of my life
And stood naked in front of a cracked mirror.
I allowed me to wreak vengeance upon myself.
I stared condescendingly at the Sun and said, ‘You screwball!’
I showered choice curses upon all artists who paint dreams;
I walked from the East towards the West;
I picked stones I found on the way and hurled them at myself,
How boisterously flows this water in its fit of laughter
Through mountains and gorges.
What ocean is it seeking to meet?
Or will it seep
Into the soil at sea-level?
Did even I belong to myself?
I could not even embrace her dead body
And cry my heart out.
The day she was gone,
I painted my face black.

And just look at the beginning of it: Let’s change the sex of Eve / Let’s make Adam pregnant. And then you find it so odd that he should be with the Shiv Sena — maybe he’s saying, ‘Let’s do that, let’s go out and confuse you.’

DC: Namdeo dares you, as a reader, and as a translator. There’s something I describe as aesthetic subversion. Namdeo subverts bourgeois sensibilities, and that’s what appeals to me. A subversive act tries to undo the entire system on which your values are based. Namdeo is a guerrilla poet. In one phrase, one line, he’ll juxtapose dialect and the slang of Kamathipura with European references in very sophisticated Marathi. These shifts and transitions of register make translating him very hard. Translating someone like Namdeo is in a sense like Method acting — you have to find a space for him inside you, make room, and then act it out.

Viju Chitre (Dilip’s wife): At the time Namdeo started writing, his poems were the sort people couldn’t bear to go near. The words he used were the kind educated people would never even think of. That’s why most people can talk politics with him, but they don’t want to go into his poetry, because they get scared, even now. When you ask why he’s not better known, it’s because of that. He’s too rough for the sensibilities of even literary people like Vijay Tendulkar. We all pass Golpitha every day, but we try not only to not see what is there, but not to even feel it.

DC: You know, there are many Dalit poets writing in Marathi, none of them write this way. He’s far above them. It’s not as though he could be the leading light of Dalit literature when Dalit writers have such very small ambitions. They all have too many statements to make about being Dalit.

What you’re saying is this is past being an identity statement: I am Dalit, this is my voice. Maybe this is one way of getting over the question of audience — maybe the perfect audience for Namdeo Dhasal is the reader’s gut.

DC: How does he reach German audiences through a secondary translation based on my translation?

SA: Or how would I read one small excerpt and get so excited by it, and say I want to publish this, somehow, anyhow? When I show this book around, when people read just one poem, first they’re not sure they’re reading a translation, and then they can’t understand why they haven’t heard of him before.

DC: But it is also the case that you cannot really separate Namdeo’s politics from his poetry. On April 14 [Ambedkar’s birth anniversary], every year from 1972 onwards, Namdeo Dhasal has been writing one long poem addressed to Ambedkar, but also at the same-time a self-questioning poem. He is talking to Ambedkar and to himself, and is asking himself and all Dalits the question, have we lived up to the standards Ambedkar set us? These are self-examining poems that also point to several things that happened after Ambedkar passed away in 1956 that he did not have to face — the India that Ambedkar never knew and that Dalits have to face today is also part of those poems. There is this too in Namdeao’s work — if people were to read his poetry first and then read his politics, perhaps they will be less clueless than they are when they start with his politics and don’t even approach his poetry.

Jun 02 , 2007

http://www.tehelka.com/story_main30.asp?filename=hub020607Street_fight.asp

4 responses »

  1. THE TOUCH

    Original: P. Lankesh Trans: Dr. Basavaraj Donur

    That was a hectic time for Basalinga. If he delayed sowing the seeds by four days, they would not sprout in the land. But of the two oxen he had one would sleep down as soon as yoke was put on its neck. It would not rise up no matter how you heavily beat it.There was a possibility that the other ox could be as bad as its colleague. When given a thrashing, it would stand up. But the other ox was happy to know that it did not have to work till its companion rose up. Therefore Basalinga decided to sell both oxen to someone and buy a new pair. His child is ailing. His wife Siddlingi kept on telling him to take the child to Shivanooru Swamijee. But Swamijee’s treatment did not have any effect on the child and the child did not stop coughing. Meantime another problem started troubling him. He never guessed that this problem could demoralize him so much. The fact that he had to lie to sell his sleeping ox was gnawing at his mind. He lacked in him both courage and oratory required in a person to tell lies. His head started paining when he thought about what good things he could tell about his oxen. But at that time the pain that appeared in his left eye went on worsening.
    In the beginning he thought that it could be a simple eye disease. But the eye did not become red, only pain around the eye intensified. The right eye did not pain. He felt that the left eye was becoming dull with pain and he started fearing. He consulted his regular doctors in the town. After listening to the details of pain, they examined his eye by widening the eyelids. As they did not understand the nature of the problem, they spoke kind words to give him strength and explained their medical miracles, gave him a balm for applying. Basalinga came home relaxed, applied the balm given to him, warmed the eye with cloth and salt as the doctors told him. But the pain in the eye did not lessen nor did the eyesight improve. But his wife Siddlingi did not believe when he said her so.She said it was merely his imagination. Basalinga become angry. He felt a sort of helplessness. Instead of simply explaining the pain; he shared his difficulty with some people. Uncultivated land, illness of the child—all seems to become less significant to him now. Somebody told him to consult Doctor Timmappa,a government eye surgeon and this seemed him to be the last resort. He believed that government hospital was meant for people who had no other better places to go. But those who told about Timmappa had encouraged him and told him how bad the private doctors were.
    Doctor Timmappa was a very busy doctor. Tens of people queued at the hospital; all of them were poor.Basalinga stood waiting. When his turn came, he went in and standing in front of Timmappa expressed his problems. Started with his sleeping oxen he went on telling about his pain, and also about that that destroyed his sleep and his peace. Timmappa examined him. With his lively fingers, with confident words the doctor examined the clarity of his eyesight. He tried to trace the origin of the pain. At last he said: “Your eyesight will be alright, but you have to undergo an operation, is it alright?”
    Basalinga looked at the doctor as if to ask if his eye could surely go well.
    Timmappa spoke to Basalinga confidently. Keeping this in mind he told only the name of the doctor to Siddlingi when she asked. He was not inclined to give her all details. Next day, he went to the hospital after doing his routine.Timmappa was so good that he seemed to be waiting for his patient. He developed a special interest and love for him. His land, ox and child all attracted the doctor. An experienced doctor as he was, Timmappa prepared him for operation and in a few minutes he finished his job. Holding Basalinga’s hand the doctor said: “Look, it is a very delicate operation; don’t get your head wet for two weeks. There is every possibility of losing your eyesight if a drop of water falls on the eye. Remember it well.”
    Basalinga also developed a queer kind of love for Timmappa. But Siddlingi started a big quarrel when he reached home. She somehow learnt that Timmappa is holeya (untouchable) by caste, an untouchable. He wondered how she came to know the matter that he himself did not know. It seemed that his relation with Timmappa ran into rough weather. For a moment, he thought it would have been good had he told him a word about his caste before operating upon him. Later he abused himself for thinking so.Basalinga felt that he lacked something and was grieved on that account. He decided not to tell it to anyone.Siddlingi also agreed to it. To wipe out the effect of untouchability Basalinga had to take bath. Although he did not forget Timmappa’s advice, it started blurring.Siddlingi bathed him in the hot water without getting his eyes wet.
    He was physically relieved. His eye did not pain for two days. But on the third day it started troubling, the pain started again. Now, Basalinga was at cross and repented. Unable to lie to Timmappa, in a week, Basalinga consulted all other doctors in the city except Timmappa.He told them what happened. Their suggestion, medicine did not work out at all. Finding no other go he went to Timmappa again. He started asking him questions with the same love. Basalinga answered. He lied that he had not got his head wet. When he saw Basalinga trembling Timmappa told him what he felt. Basalinga felt more embarrassed when he learnt that the doctor knew that he had lied.
    “Basalinga, you are really very good. Tell me what has exactly happened.” Timmappa said coldly.
    Basalinga became flattened. Basalinga who had lied then now started telling mechanically what really happened. After explaining everything to the doctor he sat silently as if weight on his heart was lifted. “Do whatever you can, operate upon me again. I won’t disobey you”, he said to Timmappa.
    Timmappa nodded no. He said nothing would happen even if he operated again. “I will give medicine for the wound, apply it without fail”, he said to him.Basalinga became angry for the reason best known to him. He felt that Timmappa who spoilt his caste was now ignoring him. He believed that Timmappa was somehow responsible for his losing the eyesight. Sharing this with people he criticized Timmappa; he twisted the whole matter in such a way that anyone who heard it should become angry with Timmappa.As he went on telling people, he started believing in his own twisted version of truth. Sometime he sat whole day unable to know anything and he wondered at his shallowness that was engulfing him. This might help him in selling his oxen; his lies might help his family, he felt. One could see a lot of zeal in his voice when talking to his wife Siddllingi.He felt he should learn to speak waywardly. If he delayed in cultivating the land; this willfulness should help him in taking loan from others to live.
    But the tragedy of Basalinga is not to seen in this direction. With the complete loss of power of the left eye, the pain disappeared. But with the disappearance of pain in the left eye, the pain in the right eye started. The innocence that he had when pain started in the left eye now appeared again in his mind. As he became wiser this time, he consulted many doctors. He visited doctors along with Lingayat Rudrappa whom he knew. Some said, “this problem doesn’t need operation at all, Timmappa has no brain—so he operated upon.” They gave him medicine and also a piece of advice. But Basalinga’s pain did not disappear, nor did his fear. He consulted doctors available in the area because he believed that there was medicine for his eye disease. At last he saw doctor Timmappa in his own careless fashion.
    Timmappa noticed the changes that had taken place in his patient. His throat swelled and he was reduced to a skeleton without his knowledge. His disease was beginning to touch the psychological level from the physical one.
    Timmappa told him with pain. “Basalinga, I touched you only as a doctor. But this sense of touch has done so much to an innocent person like you that I never imagined. This no mistake of yours. I won’t abuse anyone for this either. This time you do a thing. Consult doctor Chandrappa telling my name. He is as good as I am. Don’t misunderstand”, he said.
    Although Basalinga now did not hate Timmappa, he had developed a sort of challenging attitude towards him. He wondered if the doctor Timmappa knew what he said about him and about his caste. This fear turned into egoism in him. As soon as he came out of Timmappa’s room, he learnt from the politician Rudrappa about Chandrappa’s caste. He felt relaxed when he knew that Chandrappa’s caste was not as bad as that of Timmappa. At once he met doctor Chandrappa.
    Something that he never expected was waiting for him when he went to see Chandrappa.Chandrappa heard the history of his left eye with Basalinga’s twist. “It is impossible for people like me to do the work that doctor Timmappa can’t do. He is the most talented and honest doctor that our medicine has ever seen. He is specialized in this kind of eye disease. You will be able to save the eye that you still have if you see him”, he said.
    Basalinga came out with politician Rudrappa, sat in the scorching sun with his hands on the head. He did not speak even if anyone tried to speak to him. The words of his wife also did not fall on his ears. Meanwhile the pain in the right eye intensified. Basalinga knew that the eyesight would become dull as time passed It became definite to him that his carelessness, lies, caste and pontiff- nobody would save his eyes. He was beginning to feel pain–not just physical, something beyond physical. He remembered the lightening like fingers and the lovely face of Timmappa.He also remembered his land, his oxen, the mango tree in the corner of his land and parijat flower.
    He directly wert to Timmappa. The painful right eye was shedding tears. He held Timmappa’s hand. Embracing him he started sobbing very heavily. Timmappa was not moved. He did not soak his head either. Basalinga blabbed something when he got control over his breathing. That he and Timmappa alone could understand.
    He looked at Basalinga sitting before him even without blinking his eyes. Timmappa thought about the reasons why he liked him. Is it because of that innocence which Basalinga had once and which was appearing in him now or is it because the question of which caste Basalinga belonged to did not lurk in his mind whenever he saw him or is it because of he was a witness to man’s agony, dilemma and shallowness as well as his goodness?
    Basalinga was looking at his unmoving eyes. His eyes started collecting water. He said before it could turn into tears. “This time you must not get your head wet. This eye will be alright.”Saying only this much he started making preparation for operation.
    Having freed from lies Basalinga sat looking at the movements of doctor Timmappa like a child.

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