Class 10 English Chapter 3 The Passing Away of Bapu – Nayantara Sehgal

The Passing Away of Bapu – Nayantara Sehgal

About the Author & the Text:

Nayantara Sahgal, in full Nayantara Pandit Sahgal (1927), is a leading Indian journalist and novelist whose fiction presents the personal crises of India’s elite amid settings of political upheaval. She is a member of the Nehru–Gandhi family, the second of the three daughters born to Jawaharlal Nehru’s sister, Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit. She was awarded the 1986 Sahitya Akademi Award for her English novel ‘Rich Like Us’ (1986).

The text is an extract from Sehgal’s memoir Prison and Chocolate Cake (1954). It recalls the situation and incidents following the death of Gandhiji.

 

Unit 1 Summary:

From the evening of 30th January 1948, the memoir began. The narrator was enjoying tea at home. Suddenly an emergency telephone called her to Birla House with the shocking news that Gandhiji had been shot on his way to a prayer meeting. At the Birla House, Gandhiji’s relatives and followers had gathered. There prevailed silence. Words of Bapuji’s death spread in Delhi like fire. A sad group of people gathered at the house but there was an unnatural silence. It was as if time stood still. At first, people were too stunned to talk, but later they broke into tears. The announcement that they would be allowed to see Gandhiji before the funeral calmed them a little. All the mourning people looked like lost children in grief. People sat still shocked and unbelieving and everyone listened to the broadcast telling the people of India that their Bapu was no more.

( 1948 সালের 30 জানুয়ারী সন্ধ্যা থেকে স্মৃতিকথা শুরু হয়।  কথক বাড়িতে চা খাচ্ছিলেন।  হঠাৎ একটি জরুরী টেলিফোন তাকে বিড়লা হাউসে ডেকেছিল এই মর্মান্তিক সংবাদের সাথে যে গান্ধীজি একটি প্রার্থনা সভায় যাওয়ার পথে গুলিবিদ্ধ হয়েছেন।  বিড়লা হাউসে গান্ধীজীর আত্মীয় ও অনুগামীরা জড়ো হয়েছিল।  সেখানে বিরাজ করছিল নীরবতা।  বাপুজির মৃত্যুর কথা আগুনের মতো ছড়িয়ে পড়ল দিল্লিতে।  দু:খিত মানুষের দল বাড়িতে জড়ো হয়েছিল কিন্তু সেখানে একটি অস্বাভাবিক নীরবতা ছিল। সময় যেন থমকে দাঁড়ালো।  প্রথমে লোকেরা কথা বলতে খুব হতবাক হলেও পরে তারা কান্নায় ভেঙে পড়েন।  শেষকৃত্যের আগে তাদের গান্ধীজিকে দেখতে দেওয়া হবে এই ঘোষণা তাদের কিছুটা শান্ত করেছিল। শোকে হারিয়ে যাওয়া সমস্ত শোকার্ত মানুষদের শিশুদের মতো দেখাচ্ছিল। লোকেরা তখনও হতবাক এবং অবিশ্বাসী হয়ে বসেছিল এবং সবাই সম্প্রচার শুনছিল যে ভারতবাসীকে বলেছিল যে তাদের বাপু আর নেই। )

Unit 1 Word Notes

Numb – নিশ্চল / অসাড়
Unnatural – অস্বাভাবিক
Stunned – স্তব্ধ হওয়া
Clamoured – গোলমাল করা
Jostled – ধাক্কাধাক্কি করা
Stampede – ছত্রভঙ্গ
Funeral – অন্তেষ্টিক্রিয়া
Whimpers – ঘ্যানঘ্যান করা
Mourning – শোকার্ত
Broadcast – সম্প্রচার

Comprehension Exercises (Unit-1)

1. Choose the correct alternative to complete the following sentences:

(a)  Gandhiji had been shot on his way to
(i)   the Birla House  (ii)  the author’s house  (iii) a prayer meeting  (iv) a family gathering

Ans: (iii) a prayer meeting

(b) The author came to know of Gandhiji’s death by(i)   a letter  (ii)  a telephone call  (iii) a telegram  (iv) a public broadcast

Ans: (ii)  a telephone call

(c) When one is faced with the shock of a loved one’s death, one
(i)   whimpers  (ii)  laughs  (iii) claps (iv) shouts

Ans: (i)   whimpers

2. Fill in the chart with information from the text:

(a) date on which Gandhiji was shot dead  30th January 1948
(b) place where Gandhiji breathed his last  Birla House
(c) information given by the broadcast  Bapu was no more

3. State whether the following statements are True or False. Provide sentences /phrases /words in support of your answer:

(a) The author received an urgent telephone call. in the morning.   False

Supporting Statement: I was having tea at home on the evening of…..an urgent telephone.

(b) People attempted to break into the Birla House.   True

Supporting Statement: They jostled one another in a stampede to break into the house.

(c) The news of Gandhiji’s death did not shock the people.   False

Supporting Statement: It was the question…..we sat, still shocked and unbelieving.

 

Unit 2 Summary:

Gandhiji’s funeral rites were accomplished on the second day of his death. Hours in advance people queued on the route of the funeral procession. Padmasi, Mrs. Naidu’s daughter declared on behalf of the mourning people that all of them would walk with the funeral procession as it would be their last walk with Bapu. Bapu lay on an open truck covered with flowers. Thousands of people wept, trying in vain to touch his feet. As the narrator moved forward slowly, she understood it was more than a funeral procession of India’s beloved leader. People could not accept that the leader who led them over a difficult path, was never going to walk again. Once Bapu walked over a large part of India with his walking stick. Walking made slow advancement but to walk was the only way open to an average Indian. Gandhiji transformed this walking into a joyful effort.

( গান্ধীজির অন্ত্যেষ্টিক্রিয়া তাঁর মৃত্যুর দ্বিতীয় দিনে সম্পন্ন হয়েছিল। কয়েক ঘণ্টা আগে থেকেই শবযাত্রার পথে সারিবদ্ধভাবে মানুষ দাঁড়িয়ে ছিল।  পদ্মসি, মিসেস নাইডুর কন্যা শোকার্ত মানুষের পক্ষে ঘোষণা করেছিলেন যে তারা সকলেই শবযাত্রার সাথে হাঁটবেন কারণ এটি হবে বাপুর সাথে তাদের শেষ হাঁটা। বাপু ফুলে ঢাকা খোলা ট্রাকের উপর শুয়ে ছিল।  হাজার হাজার মানুষ তার পা ছোঁয়ার বৃথা চেষ্টা করে কেঁদেছিল।  কথক ধীরে ধীরে এগিয়ে যাওয়ার সাথে সাথে তিনি বুঝতে পেরেছিলেন যে এটি ভারতের প্রিয় নেতার শবযাত্রার চেয়েও বেশি কিছু।  জনগণ মেনে নিতে পারছিল না যে নেতা তাদের কঠিন পথে নিয়ে গেছেন, তিনি আর কখনো হাঁটবেন না।  একবার বাপু তার হাঁটার লাঠি নিয়ে ভারতের বিশাল অংশে হেঁটেছিলেন।  হাঁটা ধীরগতিতে অগ্রসর হয়েছিল কিন্তু একজন সাধারণ ভারতীয়ের জন্য হাঁটাই একমাত্র পথ ছিল। গান্ধীজি এই পথচলাকে আনন্দময় প্রচেষ্টায় রূপান্তরিত করেছিলেন। )

Unit 2 Word Notes

Funeral: শেষকৃত্য
Procession: মিছিল
Agonizing: যন্ত্রনাদায়ক
Thick: ঘন
Crowd: ভিড়
Grief: দুঃখ
Staff: হাঁটার লাঠি
Clarity: কোনো কিছু ঠিকঠাক ভাবে বোঝা
Average: সাধারণ
Commonplace: সাধারণ
Transformed: রূপান্তরিত করেছিল

Comprehension Exercises (Unit-2)

4. Choose the correct alternative to complete the following sentences:

(a) Gandhiji’s funeral was to take place
(i) on the day of his death (ii) two days after his death (iii) one day after his death (iv) a week after his death

Ans: (iii) one day after his death

(b) Padmasi was Mrs. Naidu’s
(i) niece (ii) sister (iii) friend (iv) daughter

Ans: (iv) daughter

(c) While walking, Bapu used to carry in his hand a/an
(i) flag (ii) stick (iii) umbrella (iv) cane

Ans: (ii) stick

5. Complete the following sentences with information from the text:

(a) Thousands of people wept, trying to touch Bapu’s feet.

(b) The author was among people for whom walking with Bapu had a special meaning.

(c) To walk is to make slow progress.

6. Fill in the chart with information from the text:

(a) It was impossible to move.

Reason: Because there was a thick crowd.

(b) Padmasi declared that they would walk with Gandhiji in the funeral procession.

Reason: Because it was the last time that they would walk with Bapu.

(c) To walk was often the only way open to the average Indian.

Reason: Because it requires no vehicle except his own body and costs him nothing but his energy.

 

Unit 3 Summary:

Some days after the funeral, Gandhiji’s ashes were taken to Allahabad by a special train. The entire compartment was decorated with flowers. People were singing bhajans. They could feel Gandhiji’s presence amid the flowers and songs. The train reached Allahabad and Bapu’s ashes were immersed in the Ganges. Back in Delhi, the narrator felt at sea. The narrator had not directly worked with Bapu or had never done any sacrifice but after Bapu’s death, she felt unprotected. Later on, she encouraged herself and asked herself about the true meaning of Bapu’s death. She could not lose courage for the sake of Bapu and his sacrifice. She thought that if Bapu is now gone, the young generation would bear his banner. India would continue to live with his children.

( অন্ত্যেষ্টিক্রিয়ার কিছু দিন পরে, গান্ধীজির চিতাভস্ম একটি বিশেষ ট্রেনে এলাহাবাদে নিয়ে যাওয়া হয়। পুরো বগি ফুল দিয়ে সাজানো হয়েছিল। লোকেরা ভজন গাইছিল। তারা ফুল ও গানের মধ্যে গান্ধীজির উপস্থিতি অনুভব করতে পারছিল। ট্রেন এলাহাবাদে পৌঁছায় এবং বাপুর ভস্ম গঙ্গায় বিসর্জন দেওয়া হয়।  দিল্লিতে ফিরে, কথক নিজেকে যেন সমুদ্রে অনুভব করলেন।  কথক সরাসরি বাপুর সাথে কাজ করেননি বা কোনো ত্যাগ স্বীকার করেননি কিন্তু বাপুর মৃত্যুর পর তিনি অসুরক্ষিত বোধ করছিলেন। পরে তিনি নিজেকে উত্সাহিত করেছিলেন এবং বাপুর মৃত্যুর আসল অর্থ সম্পর্কে নিজেকে জিজ্ঞাসা করেছিলেন।  বাপু এবং তার আত্মত্যাগের  কথা মাথায় রেখে তিনি সাহস হারাতে পারেননা।  তিনি ভাবলেন বাপু এখন চলে গেছেন, কিন্তু তরুণ প্রজন্ম তার দেখানো পথে চলবে। ভারত তাঁর সন্তানদের নিয়ে বেঁচে থাকবে। )

Unit 3 Word Notes

Ashes: চিতাভষ্ম
Decked: সাজানো
Immersed: বিসর্জিত হয়েছিল
Merely: কেবল, নিছক, শুধু
Onlookers: দর্শক
Vanished: অদৃশ্য হয়ে গিয়েছিল
Unprotected: অসুরক্ষিত
Folk: জনগণ
Indifference: উদাসীনতা
Awakened: উদ্বুদ্ধ
Passed away: মারা যান

Comprehension Exercises (Unit-3)

7. Choose the correct alternative to complete the following sentences:

a) Gandhiji’s ashes were taken to
(i)  Ahmedabad  (ii) Allahabad  (iii) Delhi  (iv) Benaras

Ans: (ii) Allahabad

b) A huge crowd had gathered by the
(i)   Ganges  (ii)  Yamuna  (iii) Brahmaputra  (iv) Narmada

Ans: (i) Ganges

c) Gandhiji awakened people to an another
(i)  indifference  (ii)  jealousy  (iii) suffering  (iv) greed

Ans: (iii) suffering

8. Complete the following sentences with information from the text:

(a) People on the special train sang bhajans.

(b) The author felt she had grown up within a magic circle.

(c) Bapu had passed away but his India would continue to leave in his children.

9. Fill in the chart with information from the text :

a) Cause: They could feel Gandhiji’s presence amid the flowers and songs.

Effect: People did not weep anymore.

b) Cause: The magic circle vanished.

Effect: The author felt unprotected.

c) Cause: The author’s values were not so weak.

Effect: The author felt that she wouldn’t lose courage so easily.

 

Grammar in Use

10. Join the following pairs of sentences into single sentences as directed:

(a) I saw a snake. I ran away. (use participle)

Ans: Seeing a snake, I ran away.

(b) He learns music. He listens to the chords. (use preposition with gerund)

Ans: By listening to the chords, he learns music.

(c) Gold is a precious metal. It is used to make ornaments. (use noun in apposition)

Ans: Gold, a precious metal, is used to make ornaments.

(d) Ramu has some money. He can buy books. (use infinitive)

Ans: Ramu has some money to buy books.

(e) The sky was cloudy. We postponed our journey. (use nominative absolute)

Ans: Having the sky cloudy, we postponed our journey.

(f) The boy wrote the answer. The answer was incorrect. (use adverbial phrase)

Ans: The boy wrote the answer incorrectly.

11. Join the following pairs of sentences into single compound sentences as directed:

a) The old man is unwell. He cannot go out. (use illative conjunction)

Ans- The old man is unwell so he cannot go out.

b) He is honest. He is humble. (use cumulative conjunction)

Ans- He is honest as well as humble.

c) Sonali cannot write poetry. She keeps on trying. (use adversative conjunction)

Ans-  Sonali cannot write poetry yet she keeps on trying.

d) Study hard. You will not pass the examination. (use alternative conjunction)

Ans– Study hard or else you will not pass the examination.

12. Join the following pairs of sentences into single complex sentences as directed:

(a) Rabindranath Tagore is a famous poet. He won the Nobel Prize. (use adjective clause)

Ans: Rabindranath Tagore who is a famous poet won the Nobel Prize.

(b) He returned home. Everyone in the family had fallen asleep. (use adverb clause)

Ans: When he returned home, everyone in the family had fallen asleep.

(c) The sun rises in the east. Everyone knows it. (use noun clause)

Ans: Everyone knows that the sun rises in the east.

13. Join the following sentences into single sentences as directed :

 a) It rained hard. The roads were not flooded. (compound sentence)

Ans – It rained hard but the roads were not flooded.

b) He completed his work. He took a rest. (simple sentence)

Ans – After completing his work, he took a rest.

c) Rahul is a great singer. He can sing different kinds of songs. (complex sentence)

Ans – Rahul, who is a great singer, can sing different kinds of songs.

d) The time of departure of the train has changed. Alia knew it. (complex sentence)

Ans – Alia knew about the time of departure of the train which had changed.

e) I do not watch television, I do not listen to the radio. (compound sentence)

Ans – I neither watch television nor listen to the radio.

f) The child was short. The child couldn’t pick the guava from the tree. (simple sentence)

Ans– Being short, the child couldn’t pick the guava from the tree.

14. Split the following into two sentences :

a) It rained and I could not leave my room.

Ans- It was raining. I could not leave my room.

b) He thought that he could win the race.

Ans – He could win the race. He thought.

c) Having been informed of the trouble, the Principal left for home.

Ans –The Principal was informed about the trouble. He left for home.

d) Nasir, who was the captain of the team, scored a century.

Ans – Nasir was the captain of the team. He scored a century.

 

Writing Activities

15. Write a biography of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (within 100 words) based on the hints given below:

born on 11 November 1888— composed poetry in Urdu— worked as a journalist, protested against British Raj — enthusiastic supporter of Gandhiji’s ideas— wrote many books — like ‘India Wins Freedom’, ‘Ghubar-e-khatir’ etc.— first Education Minister of independent India— birthday celebrated as National Education Day— died on 22 February 1958

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was a great national hero and scholar, leader of the Indian National Congress, and played a crucial role in the freedom struggle of India. He was born in Mecca on 11th November 1888. Later his family relocated to Calcutta in 1890. He was also a poet and composed poetry in Urdu. Kalam also worked as a journalist and published many works criticising the British Raj. He was an enthusiastic supporter of Mahatma Gandhi’s ideas. He wrote many books and among those, ‘India wins freedom’ , ‘Ghubar-e-khatir’ are some of his noted works. He became the first Education Minister of our independent India. We celebrate his birthday as National Education Day in India. This great independent activist took his last breath on the 22nd of February, 1958.

(Words: 130)

16. Use the following flow-chart to write a paragraph (within 100 words) on how a building is constructed:

drawing of a plan of the building by the architect – getting the plan sanctioned by the corporation or municipal authorities – engaging masons and labourers – starting the construction with bricks, cement, and sand – fitting doors and windows – plastering of walls – wiring – electric and water connections – painting – building completed – fit for living

Rules-

  • Start with a suitable heading at the top.
  • Write an introductory sentence and write on each points of the flow chart, then conclude.
  • The sentences are to be tied up by the linkes – At first, Now, Then, Next, After this/that, At last, Finally etc. as required to maintain the flow.
  • Write in passive voice and in simple present tense

Constructing a Building

Building Construction is a complex and time-taking process. At first, a plan is drawn with proper consultancy with architect.  It is necessary to get the plan sanctioned by the corporation or municipal authorities. Then the building structure is made. Masons and labourers are engaged to form the structure. Then they begin the construction with bricks, cement and sand. After that all the doors ans windows are fitted. Then the inner and outer walls of the building is plastered. Wiring and electric and water connections are completed after that. The building is painted beautifully next. And thus the building is completed and made fit for living.

(Words: 105)

 

Extra Comprehension Exercises

Unit – 1

1. Choose the correct alternative to complete the following sentences:

A. Gandhiji died on –
(i) 30th January (ii) 31st January (iii) 30th March (iv) 29th January

Ans: (i) 30th January

B. News of Bapuji’s death spread in Delhi like
(i) wind (ii) flame (iii) water (iv) light

Ans: (ii) flame

C. The author was numb with
(i) fear (ii) tension (iii) shock (iv) none of these

Ans: (iii) shock

2. Complete the following sentences with information from the text:

A. Out of every window one could see a brown blur of faces.

B. Later they clamoured wildly, shouting and crying.

C. This was surely the question uppermost in the mind of the mourning people.

3. Answer the following questions:

A. How did the words of Gandhiji’s death spread through Delhi?

Ans: The words of Gandhiji’s death spread through Delhi like a flame fanned by the wind.

B. Why couldn’t the people speak in the beginning?

Ans: The people who had gathered around the Birla House were too stunned to speak in the beginning.

C. How did the people look like?

Ans: The people looked like lost children.

Unit – 2

1. Choose the correct alternative to complete the following sentences:

a) The walk was
i) memorable  ii) sorrowful  iii) agonizing

Ans: iii) agonizing

b) Thousands of people watched the procession
i) silently ii) noisily iii) passively

Ans: i) silently.

c) The people lined the route the funeral procession was to follow
i) hours in advance ii) five hours in advance iii) two hours in advance

Ans. i) hours in advance

2. Complete the following sentences with information from the text:

a) Bapu lay on an open truck covered with flowers.

b) This was even more than the funeral procession of India’s beloved leader.

c) We had walked with Bapu over the rough and smooth of India’s recent history.

3. Answer the following questions:

a) What did Padmasi speak for all the people?

Ans. Padmasi spoke for all the people that they would walk because it would be the last time they would be walking with Bapu.

b) How did Bapu walk over a large part of India?

Ans. Bapu walked over to a large part of India with a staff in hand.

c) What could not the people accept now?

Ans. The people could not now accept the fact that the man who had led them over many difficult paths, was never going to walk with them again.

Unit – 3

1. Choose the correct alternative to complete the following sentences:

A. People could feel Gandhiji’s presence amid the
(i) flowers (ii) songs (iii) both (i) & (ii) (iv) none of these

Ans: (iii) both (i) & (ii)

B. Afterwards they all went back to
(i) Allahabad (ii) Ahmedabad (iii) Delhi (iv) Gujarat

Ans: (iii) Delhi

C. Gandhiji’s ashes were immersed in the
(i)  Ganges  (ii)  Yamuna  (iii) Brahmaputra  (iv) Narmada

Ans: (i) Ganges

2. Complete the following sentences with information from the text:

A. Back in Delhi, I felt at sea.

B. I had not directly walked with Gandhiji, gone to prison at his call, or made any sacrifice for my country.

C. I asked myself – had Bapu lived and died for nothing.

3. Answer the following questions :

a ) Where did Gandhiji’s ashes immersed?

ans. Gandhiji’s ashes were immersed in the Ganges where a huge crowd had gathered at the bank.

b) How did the author feel with Bapu’s passing away?

Ans. With Bapu’s passing away, the author felt the magic circle had vanished, leaving her unprotected.

c) Who can bear Bapu’s banner?

Ans. The author and the young, strong, and proud people can bear Bapu’s banner before them.

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