Introducing Porodeshe Porobashi
Porodeshe Porobashi (Life on Distant Shores) is a novel written in Bengali by Abdur Rouf Choudhury. The book was first published in 2003 in Bangladesh and West Bengal of India.
Abdur Rouf Choudhury, has dedicated the novel to two well-known non-resident Bangladeshi writers, Syed Waliullah and Shamsuddin Abul Kalam. The novel is preceded by a preface written by Abdul Mannan Syed.
In Porodeshe Porobashi Abdur Rouf Choudhury has not only discovered London, where he stayed with his fellow Sylhetis, but also unwrap his own feelings about Indian Sub-continent; in particular when you are far away from your own country, and when you are detached from your love ones, your inner-eye grow to unearth the truth. This discovery is ugly from a close look but is beautiful and lovable when seen from a distance. Most of us who stay in our homeland fail to take a close-look to understand the inner problems, that is, social, political, humanity etc, but the novelist succeeded in discovering his homeland (Indian Sub-continent) while staying overseas, and thinking of it and loving it. Reality and nostalgia get mixed with each other to form a perfect image of the writer's homeland in his mind.
Porodeshe Porobashi is very quality work of art by any standard. The writer is a powerful narrator, and he has uses wit and humour with quite deftly. Abdur Rouf Choudhury is, also, a skilful user of words. This novel was written in autobiographical style and has a philosophical outlook. The writer clearly understood the psyche of Bangladeshis staying abroad; he dips deep into the human mind, than he mixes reality with the light and shade of truth, which is a true picture of common life. It is lively and hat at all dull, neither a travelogue nor a memoir, it is a novel with lively characters, a touching story of human suffering and a story of the eternal lonely man. Porodeshe Porobashi is not a common love story, but it is a story with conflict, disagreement, clash and friendship, also, light on the mysteries of human existence.
Rup Miah is the main character, a young man from Sylhet coming to London to earn his livelihood, the writer describes, through him, the anxiety of human existence and the suffering the society inflicts upon him. It is a story of the 60s and the 70s with Rup Miah, Farnin, Choto Mama, Main, Javed, Nur Miah, Dildar, Mina and Nasrin as Characters. The writer gives a great deal of importance to the physical side of human existence. Society should get rid of its manacles. The body and the soul are deeply linked, because both are very important for human beings.
The writer portrays the changes of world brought about by time. The wide canvas of words and tales of this artist brought out the plight of women in the male-dominated set-up of society; over and above the Islamic-based code of believes of the society; male-domination society pushed woman into complete subjugation, making them property for the use of men, because of such a life-style's set-up, economical and social oppression was principally faced by women. This drove women to utter frustration and desperation. Choudhury portrayed women, their plight, and their helplessness in the face of this male-dominated society. On the other hand, he wrote about their sense of humanitarian values, their love, sorrows, their deep longing for a life as normal and beautiful as free women. Abdur Rouf Choudhury handles a lot of characters and a wide range of time. The novel is a perfect picture of our society.
The novel Porodeshe Prorobashi has been translated into English.