Prashant Dayal (Deewal Part-62): There was visible anger on jailer Kaushik Pandya’s face, who had arrived at Mohammed’s barracks. He had come on orders of the IGP Prisons and was miffed with being reprimanded for being the loose cannon with the inmates. He ordered Mohammed and Co. to pack up their belongings and come with him. Mohammed simply stared back at Pandya, he was aware that he must stay strong on his ground or else the jailer would try to overshadow them with his authoritative power. In a stern voice, Mohammed replied, “Sir don’t speak so rudely with us and clarify where you are taking us” Pandya didn’t even look at Mohammed but turning towards the other inmates he said, “Your barracks are being changed. You’re being shifted to a new barrack, where only the eight of you are going to be kept. Stay alone there” Yunus didn’t like this decision of the jail authorities. He was about to say something when Mohammed signaled with his eyes to Yunus to stay mum. Within ten minutes, Mohammed and Co. packed their stuff. The cops took the men to barrack number 5 at the ‘chhota chakkar’ It was a big barrack with ample space and it would have only these eight men living in it. Except for Mohammed, everyone looked unhappy with this new place. Mohammed was busy scanning the large open ground, the doors and the walls. Meanwhile, the bandi or closure time was declared and the warden who was on duty at this barrack came with a guard and locked the doors. Everybody got busy in putting their stuff away, while Mohammed sat on his mattress, lost in deep thoughts. Everyone from the group was surprised by the sudden change in their cell. They gathered around Mohammed and sat down. Yusuf asked him, “Major, why did they separate us from the other inmates?” Parvez seconded Yusuf on this and said; “This is not good, we will have to raise this issue during our next hearing” Mohammed was looking through the closed doors of the barrack, ensuring that there was no one around. He then looked at each one of their faces, then he suddenly got up and began to dance around wildly, much to everyone’s surprise.

He saw the puzzled looks on his accomplices’ faces. He sat down on his mattress again and said, “The arrow has hit right on the target. This is actually more than what I had expected. Nobody understood what Mohammed referring was to. He then huddled up everyone close to him and began to speak. The expression on the faces of his accomplices kept shifting from shock to surprise. It later settled down to a more sober and serious expression. Probably because they were contemplating the possibility of what their leader had just spoken about. Most of them were apprehensive about the plan that Mohammed just presented to them. Yusuf and Parvez were rather scared of the possible consequences. Reading their expressions, Mohammed said, I don’t believe in living with fear and I don’t keep weak men with me. Parvez was about to say something when Mohammed placed a hand on his mouth and said “Langde why do you think so much!? Now all of you go to sleep, we have a new dawn waiting for us” Everyone went to bed. There was a light-bulb burning bright right in the middle of the barrack, which gave company to an awake Mohammed. Yunus and Mohammed would sleep next to each other and the light from the burning bulb was disturbing Yunus from falling asleep. He touched Mohammed’s hand next to him trying to check whether he was awake. Mohammed turned towards him, a faint smile on his face. He said he couldn’t fall asleep after what was discussed today Mohammed the stood up and went towards the iron-grilled door of the barrack and stood there. Yunus too joined him. Mohammed was staring at the silence outside the barrack, except for the sound of the boots of the guards who’d pass at regular intervals.

Yunus too came and stood next to him and asked, “Do you really think we could get out of this place one day?” Mohammed first looked at Yunus and then towards a sleeping Yusuf and Parvez and said, “We have to, if not for ourselves, for the sake of someone else” Mohammed tightened his grip over the iron bars and continued, “The iron grills could no longer hold me in here” Yunus could feel the self-confidence in Mohammed, but he doubted if he himself had the similar confidence in him. But he trusted Mohammed. He saw that all the calculations of Mohammed had fallen in place. His plan of complaining against the authorities of tearing off the Quran was actually intended to get the men separated from the regular inmates had worked. But suddenly, the track of his thought changed to what if the plans go off rails from here, what would be the consequences. A slight fear crept into Yusuf’s mind. As Yunus was lost in his thoughts, he felt the warm, large palm of Mohammed hold his shoulder, he turned and saw a smiling Mohammed looking at him and said, “Don’t think so much, that is my job. We should start working from tomorrow itself. Let’s go to bed. We must ensure that our usual routine of studying doesn't get disturbed.”