I was a judge

I was assigned just a single case
Of a murderer
To judge

My chief
Offered me
A thousand million rupees
But I refused

Then my friends – fellow brother judges –
Took me to attend a marriage
In a distant city
I didn’t know they were no longer
My friends
Just strangers
On an errand
To ensure my death

I had no illnesses
But the record shows
I had a massive heart attack
At midnight

There were no auto-drivers nearby
Yet I was driven in an auto
To a hospital
Where the ECG machine was dead
Then on the way to another hospital
I was dead

I was a judge
They turned into a cadaver
And sent back home
With a driver

Was it a murder or an accident
Nobody will investigate

Three years
Have passed
And even I’ve forgotten it all

You too should forget it
To save your conscience!

Translated from Hindi by Asad Zaidi


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Pankaj Chaturvedi Written by:

Pankaj Chaturvedi is a well-known Hindi literary critic and poet. He teaches at the Hindi Department, Harisingh Gaur University (formerly Sagar University) at Sagar, Madhya Pradesh

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