He was in his eighties or more than that. I was just sitting on the bench and trying to enjoy the romantic ambiance of the British era railway platform. He came to me. At first I took him as a beggar but he was not. He asked me where did I come from. I told him, I am not local, I am here to cover the world cup cricket. He said, I know, I have never seen you before here- with a smile. He sat beside me and started talking to me. At one stage he started a story, hearing the story my bones became icy chilled. He asked me where I was staying? I told him my hotel’s name. He smiled again – a mischievous one.
He remained silent, gave a blank look at the empty railway tracks for a while and then started, It was a deserted palace of a land-lord of the British era. It was not a hotel earlier. The land-lord was a confidant of the British East India Company. During the Sepoy uprising, hundreds of people were hanged in a secret place of that palace of the land lord.
It was scary enough to hear that story sitting on a British era railway station from a senior person! A chilling sensation was going down my spine. He continued, the Jaminder(land lord) died without even a glass of water. People say a cursed one – he was. Later the palace became a deserted one and no one could dare to enter there. Not a living creature lived there for nearly a century. Ghostly things used to happen there. Some people heard muffled cry in chorus from the palace. People used to avoid the lane of the palace even during the day. He was looking at the imposing modern structure of the hotel, just opposite of the railway station where I am residing for the last couple of days.
Enough- I got already. I took a clumsy permission from him to leave for my hotel room to leave it at the earliest. He blessed me and I took a robotic move to the hotel. I already became engrossed with the thought of the Jaminder, the uprising, the muffled cry and the last seven night- I spent there. Right now I am leaving the city and on the way to home but it seems I am going nowhere from the ‘seven nights’.