Page:Nil Durpan.djvu/27

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land sown with Indigo last year, we will not give one bigah this year for Indigo. What do we care for our house? We shall even risk (pawn) our lives."

Goluk.   What could he have done, without he said that? Just see, no anxiety would have remained in our family if the fifty bigahs of rice produce had been left with us. And if they give us the money for the Indigo, the greater part of our troubles will go away.

Nobin Madhab enters

O my son, what has been done?

Nobin.   Sir, does the cobra shrink from biting the little child on the lap of its mother on account of the sorrow of the mother? I flattered him much, but he understood nothing by that. He kept to his word and said, "Give us sixty bigahs of land, secured by written documents, and take 50 rupees, then we shall close the two years' account at once".

Goluk.   Then, if we are to give sixty bigahs for the cultivation of the Indigo, we cannot engage in any other cultivation whatever. Then we shall die without rice crops.

Nobin.   I said, "Saheb, as you engage all our men, our ploughs, and our kine, every thing in the Indigo field, only give us every year through, our food. We don't want hire." On which, he with a laugh said, "You surely don't eat Yaban's[1] rice."

Sadhu.   Those whose only pay is a bellyful of food are, I think, happier than we are.

Goluk.   We have nearly abandoned all the ploughs; still we have to cultivate Indigo. We have no chance in a dispute with the Sahebs. They bind and beat us, it is for us to suffer. We are consequently obliged to work.

Nobin.   I shall do as you order, Sir; but my design is for once to bring an action into Court.

  1. Yaban: The Mohammedans and all other nations who are not Hindus are called by that name.