By- KKM Defence Committee Member, Kamayani Bali Mahabal
This looks like a perfect family picture, the so called complete family, father, mother son and daughter together, but what you see is deception. This is a family portrait of Deepak Dengle , his wife Ranjana and his 13-year old daughter Tejashree , who studies in eighth standard and 12 year old son Tejain the sixth standard This potratit was clicked before May 16, 2011, the date when Deepak alongwith Sidharath and others was arrested on fabricated charges under the draconian law UAPA. Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.Two singers of the group ‘Kabir Kala Manch’ (KKM) – Deepak Dengle and Siddharth Bhonsle – were arrested by the ATS for being pro-Maoists under the UAPA – Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967. Without a shred of evidence, Deepak Dengle and Siddharth Bhonsle have been behind bars for a year now. Ironically, sedition, introduced by the British rulers of India to silence those seeking independence from their tyranny, is today the most powerful tool in the hands of Indian rulers of the country, once again against people seeking freedom from the state’s tyranny. The despicable plight of Dalits in this country is an open secret. These youths protested against this mass injustice through songs. How can we call ourselves a democracy if we even deny an oppressed group this basic right to protest?”
During my visit to Sewri court, in Mumbai last month on the hearing date I came to know that on May 14th 2012, it was 14th marriage anniversary of Deepak Dengle who is just 28 years old, he said shyly, ‘ Meri jaldi shaadi ho gayi, hamare yahaan jaldi shaadi kar dete hain “, ( I was married at a very young age,n our community that time we get married early ) he said while looking at his wife Ranjana, who was at the court . Ranjana who is suffering from leukemia makes two end meet by making ‘ dabbas“( Tiffin boxes ) in Pune and she is now raising her two children single handedly.
Ranjana had a gift for Deepak that a day, a precious gift from her children for the occasion, a beautiful handmade anniversary card in English and Marathi. Looking at the card, Deepak, was smiling and crying at the same time, something you don’t see but just feel. He very proudly showed me the card, and then I took permission from them to take a photograph from then to click this picture for the KKM Blog, and they happily agreed. I once again asked them, if they weer comfortable for world to see full family, and children? Ranajan said, ‘ What wrong have we done, and what wrong Deepak has done, he wrote songs and sang songs, I am proud of him, why should we hide, please go ahead and publish and show the world, that how a happy family has been broken down thanks to the State Oppression”.
As I clicked the picture the cops surrounding him inquisitively looking at me, that what will I do with this photograph, asked one cop, ‘ Kaun dekehega isko, kisey dikhaogey”. ( Who will see this photograph and who will you show , I laughed and said ” Aapko pata hai Kabir Kala Manch, poore vishwa main jaana jaat hai ab facebook par blog par ? ( Do you know that Kabir Kala Manch has reached the world with help of internet, facebook and the blog). ’ yeh Kractivism hai na , I laughed and cop gave me a puzzling look, and a confused smile, while Deepak and Ranjana looked at me with a reassuring smile.
When I told Deepak, that how his poem has become a super hite online ‘ Kis Kis ko Kaid Karogey” ( Who all will you arrest ) , he was very happy, and he said I always look forward to meet all of you, faces behind bars, inside we go into our cocoon and see same faces, but now you all have motivated me to write more and I will do so. and he is writing., and waiting for the day to be released.
Below is a Marathi poem by him from jail , echoing the same sentiments:-_ English translation by Umesh Soman
Wait and watch, I am coming !
I am coming because there’s justice…
Can without justice be this world ?
I am coming, I have to come…
The song of the downtrodden has to be sung !
My coming has a meaning…
Its the selfishness of the morsel of the starving…
I shall come… But not alone…
My intention is not small…
Wait and Watch !
Wait and watch, because,
It is small paths that turn into roads…
Thousands of trickling streams,
Turn into Powerful rivers !
My coming will neither be simple nor lame…
A stormy wind or thunder it shall be !
Like the waves of a tumultous sea with my arms spread;
That love of yours like a mighty mountain;
I want to embrace…
Wait and watch !
- Deepak Dengle’s Poem- ‘ Kis Kis Ko Kaid Karoge ‘ (kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com)
- KKM Defence Committee meets Maharshtra Chief Minister (kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com)
- Ratna Pathak Shah- Speaks for Kabir Kala Manch (kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com)
- In defence of the shahirs (kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com)
- Panel to fight targeting of Dalit youth (kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com)
- KKM Defence Committe Member Ramu Ramanathan speaks in Marathi Theatre Panel Discussion (kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com)