Page:Nil Durpan.djvu/25

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SVAROPUR(A verandah attached to) Goluk Chunder's Gola or Store-House

Goluk Chunder Basu and Sadhu Churn sitting

Sadhu.   Master, I told you then we cannot live any more in this country. You did not hear me however. A poor man's word bears fruit after the lapse of years.

Goluk.   O my child! Is it easy to leave one's country? My family has been here for seven generations. The lands which our forefathers rented have enabled us never to acknowledge ourselves servants of others. The rice, which grows, provides food for the whole year, means of hospitality to guests, and also the expense of religious services; the mustard seed we get supplies oil for the whole year, and, besides, we can sell it for about sixty or seventy rupees. Svaropur is not a place where people are in want. It has rice, peas, oil, molasses from its fields, vegetables in the garden, and fish from the tank; whose heart is not torn when obliged to leave such a place? And who can do that easily?

Sadhu.   Now it is no more a place of happiness; your garden is already gone, and your holdings are well nigh gone. Ah! it is not yet three years since the Saheb took a lease of this place, and he has already ruined the whole village. We cannot bear to turn our eyes in the southern direction towards the house of the heads of the villages (Mandal). Oh! what was it once, and what is it now! Three years ago, about sixty men used to make a daily feast in the house; there were ten ploughs, and about forty or fifty oxen; as to the court-yard, it was crowded like as at the horse races; when they used to arrange the ricks of corn it appeared, as it were, that the lotus had expanded itself on the surface of a lake bordered by sandal groves; the granary was as large as a hill;