The Morning at Dhar

It was about seven of a cold winter morning when we arrived at Dhar by bus (around 1969). From here we were to proceed to Mandu. We were stiff and tired due to overnight journey, tightly seating in the bus with cold wind that seeped on us through the windows. Some wanted urgently to go and many wanted to wash and brush teeth. Some ordered tea and were in no hurry. There was a largish, overgrown with weeds, partly broken basin with a dripping tap. The space below the basin had weeds and was mossy and wet. One of us ventured and started brushing teeth while sparingly using the cold water. There went the second and the third one. Suddenly we realized something stirred under the basin and slowly came out a crouched up man with all the water, toothpaste foam and filth running down from all over his face. All us freaked out and were flabbergasted. There were the locals who started shouting at him in a protective manner towards us. After a while I realized that he was a lapper, banished from the regular human world, not to expose his ugly cursed and disease body to the healthy humans. Darkness, seclusion, cold, and suffering was his lot.