“Sir, Naan oru piravi kurudan, paarvai endraal ennavenre theriyadhu, neengal oru ezhuthaalar dhaane? Oru kelvikku badhil solkireergala. Varnam endraal enna? Enakku varniyungal, varnam enbadhu enna? ”
Paarvai, a short story by Sujatha, written sometime in 1972, gives us a ‘glimpse’ of the blind’s world and their ‘view points’. A train journey, one (two?!) blind man. One groping in the dark and the other in brightness. Both trying to explain the seamless thoughts of their mind to the other. Sujatha, as usual, stands a class apart in his narration of this story, a sweet tinge of bitterness in the blind man’s character and a non-grudging envy of a normal man towards the blind man. The little nuances and razor sharp functioning of the other sensory organs, except the eyes of the blind man is expressed with a touch of nonchalance, yet strikingly visible to the mind’s eye.
When the blind man says “Ungalai ‘sandhithadhil’ mikka maghizchi”, the writer observes “sandhithadhil… Kann therindha ulagathin vaarthai”. The story leaves the reader with a feeling of incompleteness, a helplessness that a six-sense person feels when he is unable to explain something to a person who lacks one sense. Maybe Ashok Banker’s Mahabharatha has answers. Ashok’s odyssey of Mahabharatha starts with “As the blind king watched… “. Ironical, isn’t it?