This is the second episode in The Anger Bar series, check out the previous episode before moving on -
“You can’t call me even once! I tried calling you seventeen times!!” Ankit yelled.
“I was in a meeting damn it, unlike you I actually have a real job to feed the family!!”, Dhairya yelled back at him.
Ankit was a businessman or so he claimed. His past 4 business ventures had been a complete loss and if it weren’t for Dhairya and her accomplished law career, Ankit would have been bankrupt by now. Ankit was yelling something sitting on the couch in front of the TV when Dhairya’s phone began ringing. Dhairya stepped out of the washroom, her face still red because of the anger. Fuming, she walked towards the sound of the ringtone. Rummaging into her bag, she found her phone and answered it.
“Hello… Hi Dheeraj…”
“What!?” she shouted into the phone.
“What is it?” Ankit shouted from the living room.
“I’m coming in an hour… Don’t open your mouth till I come there.” She disconnected the phone and threw it back in her bag.
“Where are you going now?” Ankit moaned.
“Dheeraj is in jail. I’m going to bail him out. I hope when I come back you would have moved your ass from the couch and cleaned up the place!!”, Dhairya shouted back and then slammed the door of the apartment shut.
Dhairya was short and had bob cut hair. At twenty-seven, Dhairya was one of the most successful and prominent lawyers in Mumbai. She was a Gold Medallist in Law and Legal studies from Harvard and was now practicing at the Mumbai High Court. The day was turning into a nightmare for her, first the fight with Ankit over the previous day’s meeting and now the news that Dheeraj was in jail. She rushed to her car and gave a rather long ignition to it. She stepped on the accelerator and drove towards Powai Police Station.
Three Hours Ago
The security room was a small cubicle, hardly seven by seven feet. It had a wall full of small fourteen inch TV sets which showed live coverage of a rather boring parking lot. It was four pm in the afternoon, a rather lazy time for the thin and lanky security guard doing overtime. The guard saw a man come out of the elevator lobby on TV number 4 which telecasted the VIP parking area, a rather unusual scene at this time of the hour for him. The man paced around pressing the button on his keys, it seemed he couldn’t find his car. The guard smiled, amused by the man’s callousness, the man walked out of the range of the camera into TV number 3 which was also the VIP parking area. He stopped in front of a very expensive car, it looked like a Mercedes, and then he started walking around the car observing its details. Behind the car, next to the column the man bent down for a second and picked up a lever. The smile vanished from the guard’s face and was replaced by a frown.
“What is he gonna do?” he thought.
The man came up to the front of the car, the guard picked up the emergency phone, the man whacked the iron lever onto the windshield, and the guard dialed One Zero Zero.
The Police jeep arrived in five minutes, Dheeraj was being held by the security guards, and he was not giving any fight and had dropped the lever by his side. He was laughing loudly, not a normal laugh but a laugh that was frightening. The Police Inspector handcuffed Dheeraj and pushed him into the backseat of the jeep. They arrived at the Police station; Dheeraj was dragged inside by the constables and made to sit in front of the Inspector.
Inspector Waghmare had a very dull day until the security guard at The People had called him to report the destruction of property. He pounced at the opportunity to have some adventure.
“What is your name?”, Waghmare asked him rudely.
“Dheeraj Purohit sir.”
“You know I will have to lock you up in the prison for what you have done?”
“Yes sir, I know that I also know that I am allowed to make one phone call before you lock me up.”
“You seem like an intelligent man, why did you do what you did?”, Waghmare’s rudeness had subsided.
“Sir, I would like to place the call…”
Waghmare handed him the phone. Dheeraj picked up the phone and wished that the person he was about to call would at least pick up the phone. He dialed the digits with every ounce of hope he had, the phone kept ringing on the other end. One… Two… Three… Four… Five… Six…
“Hi, Dhairya!! It’s me… Dheeraj.”
“Hello… Hi Dheeraj…”
“Dhairya… I’m in trouble, I got arrested, and I’m at Powai Police Station. Please come and help me”, he finished the entire sentence in one breath.
“I’m coming in an hour… Don’t open your mouth till I come there.”
Dheeraj kept the phone. The constable nudged him to get up. He obliged. They put him in a cell where another man was already sitting on a platform.
The graveness of the entire situation now loomed upon Dheeraj. He started pacing in the small area. He could lose his job. Could? He thought, he surely would. Pankaj might even sue him for the damages he had done to his car. He didn’t even know what the official punishment for the destruction of private property was. Dhairya could save him perhaps. What if his colleagues came to know about his rage issues? He would never be hired anywhere. This could probably be the end of his professional life. He regretted his actions. The worst part was that he always felt the same when he had gone through a rage attack. But this time it was very serious. Dheeraj tried to remember how he had got a lever in his hands, but all he could remember was the broken shards of the car’s windshields. His rage had made him blind. He dropped down to the ground holding his head and started sobbing uncontrollably.
“Did you kill someone?” The man who was sitting on the platform spoke up.
Dheeraj was still sobbing; he didn’t feel like answering his question. The man stood up, Dheeraj saw that he was wearing a pathani suit which was ragged and he wore a skull cap worn by Muslim worshippers. He walked to the corner of the room, picked up a glass, and filled it with water. He came up to Dheeraj and offered him the glass. Dheeraj took the glass and gulped the water down in two sips. The man went back to the corner and placed the glass where it was and returned to sit on the platform.
“No… I didn’t kill anyone. I was angry. In my anger, I smashed my boss’s car with an iron rod. And now I feel terrible about it.”
“Anger is an energy son… If you have a lot of anger inside you, you should learn how to channel it. It’s not the end of the world my son. You will be out of here in no time.”
“I could lose my job; no one will hire me when they come to know about my dangerous rage attacks. I’m a monster. You have no idea.”
“Calm down, son. Trust me it’s not the end of the world. Anger, when channeled well is a superpower.”
The old man’s soothing voice calmed Dheeraj, his brain started working again. The observational skills went into overdrive. Dheeraj looked at the old man. The man’s clothes were ragged and looked old fashioned, probably many years old. The wrinkles on his fingers were a shade of yellowish-white. He had probably worked at a stone quarry. The sleeve had a number stamped on it which read 719 with a symbol of the Indian jail. The man had spent quite a lot of time working in the stone quarries of jails.
“Anger is like the element fire. Fire can destroy the earth by burning its resources or can be used to mold the earth into something useful, like this clay pot…” the old man pointed towards the spot from where he had drawn water earlier.
“How many years were you in jail? And for what?”, Dheeraj asked him abruptly
“Like fire, Anger is also a two-edged sword. It can hurt others as well as it can hurt you. But a true warrior knows how to use his weapons and can use a double-edged sword to the best of his abilities. I see that you have very powerful abilities; you could tell I was in prison for a long period by just looking at me. This anger of yours, make it an ally and it will work wonders for you.” the old man smiled.
“What is your name?”
“You can call me Khaled chacha.”
Powai Police Station
Dhairya stormed into the police station. The constables followed her hurriedly trying to stop her from reaching Inspector Waghmare.
“You can’t keep an innocent man in jail”, she shouted on the corridor walking briskly towards the office of the Inspector. She reached the office and stood in front of Waghmare.
“Do you have an FIR* against Dheeraj Purohit?”, Dhairya demanded.
“No madam, there was no FIR registered… But he destroyed private…”
“Then how can you arrest anyone without an FIR or a warrant? I want you to get me, Dheeraj Purohit, out of the jail right now!”, Dhairya cut Waghmare in between. Waghmare had no choice, no one had registered an FIR in three hours, and he couldn’t keep Dheeraj inside any longer.
“Shinde, remove the cuffs from Dheeraj Purohit and get him here!”, he ordered the constable.
“Madam, this man destroyed a Mercedes Benz C Class in his office, we thought it could be dangerous to let this man free…”, Waghmare started explaining to Dhairya.
“This doesn’t give you the right to keep someone in jail without an FIR.” Dhairya cut him off again.
Dheeraj entered the room with the constable. His eyes were puffy with all the sobbing and his hair unkempt. Dhairya walked up to him and asked him to follow her. Precisely at the same moment, Pankaj Sinha entered the premises of the police station. Dheeraj was stunned, he thought he was a goner. Pankaj walked up to Inspector Waghmare and introduced himself.
“Inspector Waghmare, I am Pankaj Sinha, the owner of the car this man just damaged.”, he pointed at Dheeraj.
Waghmare’s eyes lit up, this day couldn’t get any better for him.
“I want to let you know that I don’t want to report an FIR against him”, Pankaj said.
Waghmare’s lit eyes were replaced with a disappointed look. Dheeraj was shocked. Dhairya was surprised.
“He is an employee of my company and I have come here to release him.”
“I have already taken care of that”, Dhairya cut in again, “I will be taking him with me for now, he won’t be reporting to work for a few days.”
“That’s absolutely alright with me.” Pankaj agreed with her.
With that Pankaj left as swiftly as he had come in. Dheeraj couldn’t process what had just happened. Dhairya pulled him towards her car.
Dheeraj was quiet in the car. He looked at Dhairya, he noticed that her shirt wasn’t ironed; she might have been in a hurry to come to help him he thought. He noticed the scratch on the inside of her right and left hands. They were more like bruises.
“Is that Ankit?” he asked pointing to the scratches.
“Why?? Why do you do this to me Dheeraj? You know it, still, you ask.” Dhairya started sobbing.
“I’m sorry. I know it’s him, but I can’t do anything…”
Dheeraj hated Ankit, ever since he had met him. But Dhairya loved Ankit beyond limits. A year into their marriage he had started noticing scars and scratches. At first, he never asked, but later he made Dhairya confide in him. Dhairya took a promise that he would control his anger for Ankit and would never let anyone know about it.
“You can be a good twin brother as always.” She smiled at him.
Dheeraj smiled at her. He loved his younger twin more than anything in this world. But he was scared of his rage. He also didn’t know why Pankaj had not pressed charges against him and that was eating him up from inside.
To be continued…
FIR* - First Information Report is a written document prepared by the police when they receive information about the commission of a cognizable offense.
This story has more parts so stay tuned for Episode 3 next Sunday!
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See you next week with the next episode. 👋
- Darshan Pania