NIOS Class 12 English: Chapter 9 Summary of Ved Mehta՚s Autobiography- ‘My Son Will Not a Beggar Be’

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Summary of Section 9.1 - ‘Ved՚s Childhood’

  • Every child whether its girl or boy has warm memories of their childhood, from the day they begin to talk to their mother and father.
  • Habitually
  • A child starts recognizes the faces of their family member՚s including mother, father, sisters, brothers, neighbours, friends with whom they use to play all the day and servants whom they see regularly in their home.
  • They also remember the rich colours of the butterflies and birds which they love to watch always.
  • But Ved was diagnosing with prolonged sickness (meningitis) at the age of three and half years so he feels all his memories were expunged.
  • His world was only limited to four senses where colours and faces and light and darkness are unknown.
  • Ved was deprived from making precious memories of vision due to his sickness in such small age; his also limits things which are valued so much in the sighted world to nothing more than simple words which are empty of meaning.
  • Now he is not able to feel flood of sunshine streaming through the nursery window or the colours of the rainbow so now sunset or a full moon are do not matter for his and the things that matter are feel of the sun against the skin, the slow drizzling sound of the spattering rain, the feel of the air just before the coming of the quiet night, the smell of the grass on a warm morning.
  • So now for the first and only for the first time he made his made my way fumbling and faltering.

Summary of Section 9.2 - ‘How Family Reacts to Ved՚s Blindness?’

  • Ved take his illness positively as he feels it՚s good that he lost his sight, so now he had nothing to look back to or nothing to miss because he does not have any seeing memories.
  • He went blind in November 1937 when they were living in Gujarat, which is located at northern India.
  • They were moved to Lahore after his sickness but many relatives came to sympathize him so his father applied for another transfer, and they were shifted to Karnal, where they do not have any friends or relatives.
  • A cottage on the canal bank which was built in very peaceful and quiet surroundings is allotted to their family.
  • In the beginning when his illness was detected it was tough for all of his family members to accept it including his parents, three sisters, his brother, and for him too.
  • The illness had made him weak. Even servants started avoiding him y thinking that he had an evil eye personified.
  • His sisters started treating him with care just as fragile doll.
  • His mother was in tears, she was not ready to accept his condition.
  • His father was Doctor by profession in the public health service, he had made sure Ved must got prompt and good medical treatment otherwise delay would have affected Ved՚s mind or endangered his life. But his father also had no hope as others.
  • After blindness, Ved become completely inaction because of immediate shock of the illness.
  • People usually ignore potentialities of a blind child so as my parents who also had only saw blind persons as only beggars.
  • But look at the situation, my father was excellently trained doctor still by fate or by the will of God, I was blind now.
  • My father feels helpless as he found his training in this instance useless. And his wide medical experience had help him to accept that I would be blind for the rest of my life.

Summary of Section 9.3 – ‘Ved՚s Mother՚s Religious Counsel’

  • Ved՚s mother could not convince herself that her son is blind for rest of his life, for this situation she had blamed something in her past for the tragedy as she was not belonging to medical field just like his father.
  • His mother had strong belief in their family pandit as she was relied on him from her childhood.
  • She called that family pandit and consulted them because he believes that he knows more about religion and science than any other pandit in our province.
  • Ved՚s, mother take him to that pandit. Panditji was lost in his thoughts when Ved was sat in his mother՚s lap.
  • Then Panditji took Ved՚s hand and examined the lines and also studied his mother՚s forehead very seriously.
  • He declared his self inadequate to reach any conclusion and suggested to consult with more pandits.
  • As suggested more Panditji were called and questioned as to what atonement could be made.
  • They all suggested that penance could improve chance of regaining sight.
  • Intensive prayers and strenuous physical exertions both were require for Ved՚s recovery as suggested by Panditji, they also ask for a fee to perform part of the necessary religious ceremonies.
  • Ved՚s mother had taken each pandit՚s advice very carefully.
  • But she had to struggle a lot to keep this all secret from Ved՚s father as he does not like such methods.
  • She also visited hakims (physicians who followed the Greek or Unani system of medicine) along with this religious counsel.
  • These hakims had prescribed all types of concocted drops and surmas for his eyes, these all hearts his eyes a lot but only soothing part of the miserable ordeal was the loving caress of mother afterwards.
  • One night when his mother was putting this drop in his eyes, and he was crying so loud cries and his father unexpectedly returned from his work and was very angry by seeing all this and strictly say no to do all this, then gently lifted him and took him away also he bathed his hurtful eyes.
  • Even after this all application of surmas continues till he was eleven but now his mother takes his permission before applying Surma.