ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Gamak Ghar and Remembrance of Things Past

Watching Gamak Ghar, the author attempts a reconciliation with abandoned origins, an uprooted childhood and the undispersed family that used to be.

When I finished watching Achal Mishra’s Gamak Ghar (2019), I was immersed in an elaborate moment of meditative silence. A sense of resentment gripped me as memories from an estranged past came flooding into my mind. Those were the days when paddy fields still got some rain and ancestral homes had not yet transformed into neglected, dilapidated cattle sheds.

I hadn’t visited my village in the Kendrapara district of Odisha for almost a decade, until last year. But sometimes I vividly dreamt of the large banyan tree where all the witches were believed to live, the gritty roads and shipwrecked riverbanks, the temple of the tribal goddess, the stray dogs who were owned by none but petted by all. There used to be a small pond where I had learnt to swim as a seven year old. Now, it was reduced to a marshy swamp, conquered by fungi and weeds, dead fish and corpses of men who had drowned but were never found. Nestled beside this was whatever was left of my ancestral home.

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Updated On : 23rd Jan, 2021

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