We wanted to paint in a school which is deprived or under privileged. People suggested us to paint in any school in the red light area named Chaturbhuj Sthan. We were put in touch with a local leader who promised to help. We wanted to paint with sex workers as well and share their joys and troubles with our audience but we were unable to convince the concerned authority for any help.
In India, Prostitution is still illegal so we understand the dilemma. We reached our destination crossing the crowded markets of Muzaffarpur city which is also famous for the litchi fruit and also for Hindi poets like Late Suryakant Tripathi Nirala and Late Pandit Jananki vallabh shastri.
We got to know that Muzaffarpur is also known for the deadly mosquitoes which are called Machhar, hence Muzaffarpur is also called as Macchapur jokingly.
We reached the dingy, dirty and utterly disorganized school where the local leader was waiting for us with the principal and one teacher.
There were 40 students of different ages sitting together in one room. The school had no toilet and the children used the nearby Sulabh Shauchalaya for bathing and other purposes. When Meenakshi needed the use the toilet, she was forced to use the men’s toilet because of the intolerable stench and clogged toilets for the females.
We started interacting with students and played with them Kit Kit also called hopscotch. Students were really poor and most of them came to school to get free food. They were a bit difficult to handle as they kept shouting all along.
We tried to make blocks where we planned to paint Hindi and English alphabet puzzles.
We ensured that each child painted at least one block. Jey kept asking kids to keep quite but everyone was so excited and they started fighting to paint.
It really went haywire at some point when few girls started fighting and there was no one to manage them. Teachers kept sitting in their chairs chatting among themselves.
After two and half hours of struggle the situation went really chaotic. Meenakshi got really annoyed with the non cooperation of the teachers and decided to pack up and leave without finishing her painting.
We came out of the school and got surrounded by the local people. They started complaining about the teachers.
We kept quite. We knew about the teachers in Bihar. There are good ones but there are also teachers who came to school just to collect their salary.
We were told that this is one of those schools where teachers only came to receive their salary.
We didn’t react to anything as we were upset because of our half done painting.
It was for the first time in our two and half year journey that we left a painting incomplete.
It was sad but we couldn’t have helped. God save those kids who were handled by such teachers.