Translated from the Kannada [originally 'Hatye'] by Bhumika R
Dhum-dhaamar-dub-bham…‘If only it was Eid today, we too could have enjoyed ourselves by lighting crackers along with our Hindu friends who are celebrating Deepavali,’ thinks Paatumma. A variety of crackers were being lit followed by chirpy-cheery voices and gleeful screams of children. Running towards her mother, Paatumma pleaded with her, ‘Umme, buy me also some sparklers…’ and as she was putting forth her request, Paatumma’s nostrils recognised the familiar aroma of steamed sweet dumplings wafting in from their kitchen. She instantly knew that her mother was making the same steamed dumplings which she had once eaten at her friend Janaki’s house.
‘Go and ask your father to get you some firecrackers. If he does recover from fever by tomorrow, he might get you some sparklers or whatever else. Don’t you see that I am busy? I cannot leave all my work behind to buy sparklers for you.’
But when Paatumma went to request her Baapa, she saw him lying on the bed, still unwell and making faint noises indicating discomfort. When she looked out, it was still dark and the day was yet to set in. Early next morning when Umma woke up, she was surprised to see both Paatumma and Kareem were already awake.
Paatumma's heart longed for kadubu stuffed with grated coconut, jaggery and roasted sesame, wrapped in turmeric leaves and then steam cooked. Even in Janaki’s house, they will be preparing kadubu, she told herself, remembering the taste of kadubu made by Janaki’s mother which she had once eaten. ‘Umme, can I please get one kadubu at least? It will be so delicious while it is still hot and fresh,’ she pleaded. Little Kareem who was trying to play with a couple of coconut shells, pretending they were a rice vessel and plate, put it all aside and ran into the house hearing his sister mention kadubu. He knew that if Umma gave any kadubu to his sister then he too would get it.
‘Ufff! Paatumma, it would do you some good to be a bit patient. How am I going to give you kadubu when it is still being cooked? In any case, I am making these for our cow as it is their festival today,’ replied Umma. Kareem was disappointed on hearing that kadubu was meant for their cow. ‘Won’t we get any then?’ he asked his mother. ‘Wait my little one, I’ll certainly give you both your favourite kadubu once they are ready. But for now, both of you must go and wash your face, hands and feet like good children. Meanwhile, I’ll finish my morning namaz. Saying so, Umma went to wash her hands and feet, in preparation for the morning namaz.
‘Paatumma, is it a festival for the cattle today? Kareem asked his sister.
Paatumma was older than Kareem by three years. The year before, she had seen gopuja at their neighbour, Ramaiah’s house. Recollecting about how beautifully they had decked up their cow, she said, ‘Floral patterns were drawn with clay and limestone on the cow’s body and a garland adorned its neck. A dash of kumkum was then applied on its forehead and arati was offered to it. The decked-up cattle had then been fed a couple of kadubu and then taken out to the pasture for grazing.
’Fascinated by her description, Kareem suggested, ‘Let us also do the same for our cow.’
‘Ishappa! We are followers of Islam. We are not supposed to perform such prayers and rituals. However, we can certainly bathe our cow and deck her up. Come let us both go and ask Baapa…,’ said Paatumma and then went to seek permission from their father. But seeing that he was still unwell and sleeping, she quietly slipped away along with her brother.
Paatumma said, ‘We can bathe our cow and put a garland around her neck.’ ‘But we need to first get a garland, don’t we…?’ asked Kareem. Agreeing to what her brother said, Paatumma began sprinting towards the school master’s house even as little Kareem pleaded with her to wait, ‘Paatma Paatma, please wait for me. I am still a tiny fellow and I can’t run as fast as you do.’ But Paatumma barely heard her brother’s words and continued to run, excited about getting flowers to make a garland.
The school master’s wife, Sugunamma who was plucking flowers for her morning prayers saw both Paatumma and her brother standing in her front yard. Smiling towards them, she enquired, ‘What happened little ones? What brings you here?’
A bit hesitant, Paatumma requested, ‘May I please pluck a few flowers from your garden?’
Laughing at the little girl’s request, Sugunamma asked, ‘Do Muslims also offer flowers to their god while praying?’
‘It is for our cow actually…’
‘Arey! Do Muslims perform gopuja too?’, said Sugunamma and laughed harder.
Seeing her laugh at everything she said, Paatumma began to feel awkward. ‘No No…it is not for gopuja or anything. We..we just want to make a garland for our cow that’s all….,’ she fumbled. Having stated her purpose she remained quiet, wondering whether she will be permitted to pluck flowers.
Sugunamma’s husband, a schoolmaster, who had all the while been eavesdropping on the conversation between his wife and Paatumma, came out of the house and murmured something to his wife, following which both broke into laughter.
Meanwhile, Paatumma’s friend Janaki walked into the yard and seeing her friend Paatumma and her brother Kareem, she asked, ’Why do you need flowers Paatumma?’
‘We intend to make a garland for our cow. That is why we need to pluck some flowers from your garden,’ replies Paatumma. Janaki joined her friend in plucking red and white coloured daasavaala, karaveera and shankhapushpi flowers. Once they had gathered enough, the three of them sat beneath a large peepul tree and began arranging the flowers using the fibre of a banana stem. A beautiful garland was soon ready. ‘We don’t have any cattle in our house. This year we will be going to the temple to perform gopuja’, said a sad-faced Janaki.
Consoling her friend, Paatumma came up with a solution, ‘Arey! Why don’t you come over to our home in that case? We can together decorate our cow.’
Holding a garland, both Paatumma and Kareem marched home, wearing pride and joy on their faces. An excited Kareem began humming a limerick he had learnt in school. Whenever he fumbled or forgot the lines, Paatumma helped him and joined him in singing.
One, two three
Hold a vessel and go
Two three four,
Tie the cow to a pole
Four five six
Start milking the cow
Six seven eight
Now that your vessel is ful
lNine ten eleven
Ah! How sweet and delicious is the milk.
‘Milk is deliciously sweet, isn’t it, Paatumma,’ asked Kareem. ‘Yes. That’s right. Last time when our cow birthed a calf, Umma milked the cow and distributed it to our school master’s house, Jabbar Kaka’s hotel and sometimes she also gave me a little bit of that sweet tasting milk,’ reminisced Paatumma. When Kareem turned unhappy saying Umma had never given him any of it, Paatumma consoled her brother saying, ‘She gave you some too. But you were too young to remember any of it. Don’t worry! Anyway, Umma will certainly give you milk this time when our cow gives birth.’
As they neared home, the siblings saw that their mother had already drawn water from the well and tied their cow to a nearby tree, readying it for a bath. Asking her brother to hold the garland, Paatumma pleaded, ‘Umma, may I please give a bath to the cow?’ ‘Alright, but first, fold your skirt a bit and tie it up. Can you really scrub the cow’s body? Instead, it will be better if you can help me by giving mugs full of water for bathing our cow.’ While both mother and daughter got busy bathing the cow, Kareem watched them from afar. He held himself back although he wished to join his sister and mother, afraid that the cow might either kick or knock him or worse, pierce him with its horn.
Baapa who was still unwell but recovering stepped out of the house and Kareem excitedly showed him the garland. Nodding his head as if in appreciation, Baapa smiled at his son’s excitement. Seeing his wife scrub the pregnant cow’s body with soft coconut fibre, he asked her to be careful while bathing it. ‘Women know about these things better… don’t bother about it,’ laughed Umma. She then reprimanded him saying, ‘You need to keep yourself away from water for now. In case you are thinking of joining us, stay away. Merely because your fever seems to have reduced a bit you cannot indulge in such fantasies.’
Turning towards his son, Baapa asked, ‘Shall we draw some beautiful patterns on the cow’s body? Kareem eagerly nodded his head and said, ‘Yes, Baapa. Let’s do that.’ Baapa went inside the house and came out with a box containing a small ball of yellow-coloured clay and began mixing it with a little water while Kareem watched him without batting an eyelid.
Janaki arrived at Paatumma’s house to be a part of the celebration. ‘I was at Jayashree’s house as they are performing gopuja today but I left it mid-way and came here as I did not want to miss out on seeing you all deck up your cow,’ she said.
After giving a bath to their cow, Umma tied it to a nearby coconut tree and walked into the house. Baapa too went in to fetch a smooth coconut shell to dip into the clay mixture and draw patterns on their cow.
Seeing Paatumma and her brother trying to garland the freshly bathed cow, a seemingly puzzled Janaki said, ‘I don’t quite understand why you are performing gopuja. You are Muslims, aren’t you?’ Not knowing how to respond to her friend, Paatumma replied assuming the tone of a grown-up woman, ‘Our Umma said that we must feed our cow a couple of Kadubu and pamper her as today is supposed to be a festival for cows…that’s all. We don’t perform any kind of puja or gopuja…’
A still bewildered Janaki who seemed to be lost in thought said, ‘My father tells me that you all eat beef….so…he wonders how you can be performing gopuja? Perhaps that is the reason why you don’t gopuja, isn’t it?’ Paatumma could not understand how to respond. It was indeed true that they had cooked and consumed beef a couple of times. ‘But does that mean we cannot even deck up and show love towards our cattle?’ wondered a puzzled Paatumma. Unperturbed by the ongoing conversation, Kareem urged his sister to garland their cow.
However, the cow seemed to be more interested in munching on the fresh flowers used for the garland than in adorning it as a jewel around her neck. ‘Ammmamma… this is not for you eat. Umma has prepared delicious kadubu for you. We are putting this garland because it is your festival today and you will look beautiful wearing this floral garland around your neck,’ said Paatumma laughing at the cow’s antics. Kareem clapped his hand and jumped in glee, seeing the garland on their cow’s neck.
‘Your cow is such a sweet and gentle creature. Isn’t it?’ said Janaki caressing Paatumma’s cow. ‘Yes. Our Umma tells us that even a child can milk this cow. She is a very kind and friendly animal, you know,’ boasted a proud Paatumma.
Meanwhile, Baapa returned with a coconut shell and then dipping it in the coloured clay paste, began drawing pretty patterns on the cow’s body. The coloured clay patterns looked pretty on the black-skinned animal.
On the other hand, strange questions cropped up in Janaki’s head. ‘Is it…you know…is it true that your father had been arrested long ago for selling beef? It seems he was even made to carry the basket of meat on his head and then was paraded through the town. Is it really true, Paatumma?’ she asks. Paatumma did not know how she was supposed to answer her friend’s query and stood blinking not knowing what else to do.
Umma came out of the house carrying a vessel filled with hot steamed kadubu to feed their cow. Both Paatumma and Kareem began feeding the kadubu to the decked-up animal. But Paatumma was a tad distracted thinking about what her friend Janaki had told her. Unable to contain her thoughts, she asked her Baapa, leaving him sad and stunned. ‘Who has been telling you all these things, child?’ he asked his daughter. Pointing towards Janaki, Paatumma said that she told her all about it and in turn said that it was her father who had told her.
Helpless and sad, Baapa said, ‘I work for a butcher….in the market. I perform my duty as instructed and get paid for it. It’s my job to ready the meat for selling. Your father is a school teacher and imparts knowledge to young minds. I wonder why he hasn’t told you the story of a butcher who taught the lesson of kindness to sage Koushika who turned an egret into ashes for defecating on him…’ Neither Paatumma nor Janaki could make sense of what Baapa was trying to tell. But Janaki thought that she must ask her father to narrate the story of sage Koushika once she has reached home. Meanwhile, Paatumma’s imagination ran wild…she constructed a picture of her father being made to walk in the streets, carrying a basket of meat as blood streamed through it and drenched her father in it while police walked beside him, swishing their lathis. A shiver ran down her spine.
It is only when Umma called out ‘Come….kids…come let’s eat some kadubu,’ that Paatumma drifted back into reality.
When Paatumma asked Janaki to join them for breakfast, she seemed hesitant and confused about whether she should stay back or return home. Sensing her friend’s dilemma, Paatumma assured her that the kadbubu is the same kind that her mother had once made and served them both. She tried to reassure her friend that it contained no meat. However, saying that she will be back soon, Janaki ran towards her house.
‘Where is your friend?’ Umma asked her daughter as she serves kadubu to her family. Paatumma who was busy eating her breakfast, signaled to her mother that Janaki has gone home and then added saying that Baapa had told her that Janaki won’t eat anything cooked in their home.
Soon after finishing her breakfast, Paatumma asked her father, ‘Baapa, it seems Janaki’s father wondered why we are celebrating the cow festival given that we butcher and eat cow meat. Did we do anything wrong in bathing and decking up our cow? Baapa turned quiet and thoughtful not knowing what to tell his child . A minute or two later, Umma intervened saying, ‘plants and crops which are grown with such care and then consumed as food have life just like the animals we rear and eat for food. Both these are living creatures who are born, move or sway, breathe, grow, and also die. Our Quran says that even plants do ibadat to Allah. It is just that we cannot hear them speak or scream as one might hear the animals. In both these cases, isn’t it the ones who tend to them who consume them as food?’
‘Hmmm…what is the point of telling all this? No one will bother to listen to whatever we say. As long as life is still left in us, we need to go on that’s all! What can be done….,’ said Baapa with a sigh.
‘Umma… my friends ridicule and mock me because we eat beef. Let us please stop consuming beef’, requested Paatumma. On the other hand, Kareem seemed unperturbed by the conversation. He was relishing his kadubu, carefully pulling out the jaggery and coconut filling and devouring it. ‘Yes yes… all right! Let us then stop eating beef. But do you know how much poultry and other meat cost? How can we afford to buy those… All that is only for the rich and wealthy. They don’t need to buy beef or eat it as they can afford chicken and mutton. Cow meat is the only option that poor people like us can afford,’ vented out an angry Umma. ‘Besides the reason of affordability, many manage to eke out a living because a market exists for cattle meat,’ said Baapa.
‘If only we were rich and Baapa had a lot of money then there would not have been any need for him to work at the butchers. My friend would then have eaten kadubu prepared in our house,’ said a sad-faced Paatumma.
Hearing his daughter speak, Baapa sighed in helplessness. ‘So you are saying that your Baapa’s work is a bad one. Isn’t it, child? You need to understand that just as Janaki’s father works as a school teacher, I work at a butcher’s store. Work is work, that’s it. Only if you steal, deceive or do any such similar deed, you become a bad person not otherwise,’ explained Baapa in a calm tone.
Paatumma did not seem to fully understand all of it and asked her father, ‘Then…then...why did the police arrest and parade you through the town?’
‘We are citizens of this country. We were born here and grew up here. It is our duty to abide by the rules and laws of this land. I was then working as per the instructions of my employer who pays me for my work. I happened to be there on the day the police came to the shop while my employer who owns that meat shop, was away. As expected, I was arrested,’ explained Baapa.
Irritated at the turn of events, Umma asked, ‘So now there is a law which governs what we can and cannot eat…. Is it?
’In a calm tone, Baapa tells both his wife and daughter, ‘The same question was asked at the gathering which happened in the mosque after I received bail and walked out of the police station. The meat shop owner for whom I work, warned us against creating any kind of furore as it would lead to the destruction of their homes and businesses. He said they would bear the brunt of the townsfolk’s ire as poor people like us have barely anything to lose besides our hutments. On that day, I too had requested everyone not to get into unnecessary trouble as it could cost human lives. In such situations, it is crucial that we display forbearance and patience.’
‘Huh… listening to your Baapa speak makes you wonder if this man would have fitted a maulvi’s post rather than his present job at the butchers,’ remarked Umma. Listening to their mother, both Paatumma and Kareem laughed.
At last, having finished eating his breakfast, Kareem tried to drink water from a tumbler but ended up spilling nearly half of it onto the floor, barely managing to pour a little down his throat. Seeing his son’s plight, Baapa taught him to hold the tumbler such that water does not spill out of it.
Placing the soiled utensils in her basket to clean, Umma requested Paatumma to fetch medicines from the doctor’s clinic and then take their cattle out to graze in the pasture. ‘Tell the doctor that your father’s fever has reduced,’ said Umma. As it was a holiday, Paatumma was eager to take the cow for grazing and was miffed that she now had to get medicine from the clinic. But before Paatumma could think of any excuse, Umma placed an empty bottle in which to fill the medicine and along with it a five rupee currency note in front of her daughter. Seeing no other way, Paatumma ran as fast as her legs could carry her to the clinic and turned restless when asked to wait by the compounder. Either to divert her mind or to kill time or perhaps both, she quietly started reading the alphabet in the doctor’s name- Dr K.R.I.S.H.N.A.I.A.H. M.B.B.S. The compounder was sending patients as per their turn, into the doctor’s chamber but unable to wait any longer, Paatumma stealthily went along with two others who were walking towards the doctor’s chamber. ‘These people lack every bit of common sense...,’ muttered an infuriated compounder. His scoldings barely had any effect on Paatumma who merely wanted to finish her errand at the clinic and take her cattle for grazing. In short, she clearly was in no mood to wait for long at the clinic.
Examining a patient who was coughing almost incessantly, the doctor was suggesting a change in this patient’s diet, ‘You will be cured of this disease only if you eat well. You need to eat meat stew, soup etc. If you wish to recover or get better and healthy. What you are suffering from is not a simple cough but it is your respiratory organ which is infected. It is called tuberculosis or TB.’
‘But…But Doctor, I am a poor man. How can I afford to buy mutton? It costs nothing less than a hundred rupees per kilo,’ replies the helpless-sounding patient. ‘When I ask you to eat meat, I am not merely referring to mutton. You can consume beef which is cheaper but is as good,’ explains the doctor. Agreeing with the doctor’s suggestion, the coughing patient, Rajappa, who worked at the beedi factory, slowly stumbled out of the doctor’s cabin.
Realising this was a good opportunity, Paatumma rushed inside the doctor’s cabin and in one breath stated the purpose of her visit. ‘My father’s fever has reduced and also his dysentery. He is now able to walk although he continues to complain of body aches.’ It had been a hectic and tiring day for the doctor, examining one patient after another. But listening to Paatumma innocently ramble away in a single breath, he could not help but laugh. ‘What is causing you to hurry, Paatumma? Seems like you are also celebrating the festival today. Is it? Writing a prescription he then asked her to give it to the compounder. Grumbling at the lack of discipline amongst people streaming into the clinic, the compounder filled a concoction in the empty medicine bottle and wrapped a few tablets in a packet and gave it to Paatumma. Without wasting another second, Paatumma paid him and ran home. ‘May I now take the cattle for grazing?’ she asked her Umma. In mock irritation, Umma says, ‘Uffff! I don’t know why they give you a holiday at school. All you children do is chew our brains out and pester us through the day…what if our pregnant cow gives you a slip and goes into Ayyavaru’s field when you take her out to graze? They will mercilessly drag it into their shed and the other day I overheard Ayyavaru instructing his domestic help, Beera, to break the legs of any cattle straying into their field.’ ‘What do you expect them to do? These cattle ruin their crops which they nurture with care and effort in the blink of an eye, turning their efforts into dust. It takes them years to grow crops with good manure and water and it is natural that Ayyavaru is fed up with his harvest being destroyed. What else can you expect?’ retorted Baapa.
None of it was making any sense to Paatumma. She could not understand why her parents are debating about unnecessary things when all she was asking was to be allowed to take their cow for grazing. Unable to think of a way out, she began to feel restless and said, ‘Umma, I will take good care of our cow. Don’t you worry!’
‘There will be a lot of cows grazing in the pastureland today as it is the gopuja festival. It might be a good exercise for our cow so let her take it,’ said Baapa in a reassuring tone to his wife. Her head wrapped in worry, Umma said, ‘All right! But if anything goes wrong, both you and your daughter will be held responsible. Remember, it is a pregnant cow that you are sending to graze now.’
Baapa helped Paatumma untie the cow from the tree and an equally excited Kareem said he would like to join his sister too. Seeing her little son’s excitement, Umma turned towards her daughter and said, ‘take your little brother along with you, Paatumma…’
Worried that his sister might leave him behind if he delays too much, Kareem wore the first shirt he could place his hands upon and ran behind his sister. Paatumma was not particularly happy about it but saw no way out of it and had to take him along. While the cow ambled ahead, behind the cow walked Paatumma holding the rope tied to its neck and Kareem followed his sister, pestering her with an endless series of queries. Thus marched the trio.
Around three-thirty in the afternoon seeing that the children and the cow had not yet returned, Umma turned anxious. Baapa was sleeping as his fever-induced weakness persisted. ‘I am worried. The children haven’t yet returned home and it's past lunch time,’ said Umma. Unable to contain her anxiety, she woke up her husband who tried soothing her worries. ‘The kids have eaten their breakfast quite late today. So they may not be hungry that’s all. Don’t rack your brains too much over it,’ he said.
‘I am actually more worried about our pregnant cow than our children. What if the cow has somehow just strayed into Ayyavaru’s field? Rabbe! They won’t think twice before killing it. Ayyavaru has already instructed his farm-help Beera to break the legs of any cattle straying into their field. Also, our cow is almost about to give birth now… it’s our fault. We shouldn’t have sent it for grazing.’ A shiver ran through Umma’s voice thinking of what might have happened to the poor creature.
‘Don’t worry needlessly. Today is a festival for the cows amongst the Hindus. Do you think they will even dare to hurt any cow today? Moreover, as it is a holiday, the children must be engrossed in playing and lost track of the time that’s all.
‘Have you forgotten that it was on the day after gopuja that Ayyavaru’s help had broken the legs of Yusuf’s cow which strayed into their field? Realizing that the animal may not survive with its legs broken, Yusuf sent for your employer and sold the cow. The one who purchased the cow and ordered it to be butchered was your employer but you were the one who merely readied meat for sale. But that Ayyavaru had the police sent to your shop and got you arrested while your employer who assigned you the task was away. Have you forgotten? Listening to his wife, Baapa laughs, ‘It is futile brooding over the past. We cannot lead our lives if we hang onto something which occurred in the past. Yusuf’s son is now a veterinary doctor and Ayyavaru always sends word to him whenever his cattle get sick.’ Although he was trying to assuage Umma’s worry, it barely helped as the children and cow had not returned home yet. Once it was a little past four, signs of worry began to show on Baapa’s face too. Wearing a shirt, he set out in search of his yet-to-return children and cow. ‘I’ll come along too. You are still recovering from a fever and might feel giddy walking in the sun,’ said Umma and went along with her husband.
Their worry grew manifold after not seeing the children or the cow in the pastureland. Umma began to imagine that her cow had strayed into Ayyavaru’s field and then Beera had broken its legs while the children watched it and cried helplessly… ‘My cow is pregnant…,’ she begins to scream and sob.
Anxiety tearing at their hearts, both of them hurried towards Ayyavaru’s field and saw some people murmuring outside the fence of Ayyavaru’s field and they also saw a scooter parked right outside the fence. Without wasting another second, the couple rushed past the open gate and heard Beera shouting loudly, ‘Look children, your parents are here…’ An excited Paatumma ran towards her parents telling them that their cow had given birth to its calf a short while ago. ‘Umma, our cow somehow managed to escape our notice and sneak into Ayyavaru’s field and then Beera called for the vet.’ An excited Kareem asks his mother, ‘Umma, the calf is cute. Isn’t it?’
Washing his hands with a mug of water that Beera had given him, the vet told Baapa, ‘Kaadri kaaka, please come to my clinic and I’ll give you a couple of medicines for your cow. You can take both the cow and its calf home now. No need for any worry.’
Stunned at the scenario which had unfolded, the couple stood staring in disbelief. Their children Paatumma and Kareem were thrilled to see the calf trying to walk, stumble and fall in the process and yet trying again while the mother cow affectionately licked her newborn calf.
Fakir Muhammad Katpadi worked in a Bank until his retirement. Born in Barkur, a small town in the coastal town of Karnataka, he currently lives in Bangalore, India. Katpadi’s stories constitute an important voice of a local sub-community of Byaari Muslims in the coastal Karnataka. His literary works speak of shifts occurring in the socio-cultural terrain of a communally sensitive region. Katpadi has published several short story collections and two novels in the Kannada language. His short stories and novels have been translated into other Indian languages such as Malayalam, Marathi, Gujarati, Hindi, Bengali, Urdu, Konkani, Telugu and also into English. In addition, some of his short stories have been transcreated into teleserials in the Kannada language. Katpadi has been honoured by both the State government of Karnataka as well as the Government of India for his contribution to literature.
Bhumika R completed her PhD from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She has worked as an assistant professor in the School of Humanities & Sciences at Shiv Nadar University Chennai, Jain (Deemed to be) University Bangalore, Shri Mata Vaishnodevi University in Kakryal, J&K and as a language instructor in the Department of Humanities & Social Science, IIT Jammu. She believes that writing heals scars and allows you to mock authority in a subtle yet powerful manner and importantly it allows a writer to tell stories that might be difficult to articulate in academic writing. In July 2022 she decided to focus her energy and time entirely on literary writing and translation, having realised that her love and passion for literature outweigh her interest in academia. Bhumika has contributed articles to Cafe Dissensus every day, The Hindu and Deccan Herald. She writes poetry and short fiction in English. Some of her poems have been published in the Visual Verse, IACLALS newsletter, The Pine Cone Review, and platocavesonline. Her short stories have been published in the Borderless, Aainangar and East India Story. She also translates poetry and fiction from Kannada into English and vice versa.