Nothing spells Rajput like honour with a capital H. Ask a Rajput man his blood group and he will confidently say H Positive. No, this is not the Padmavati in me talking, although heaven knows there are days when I would love to jump into a fire rather than face the bottomless madness of marriage where we are gunning for each other’s throats. But that has nothing to do with marrying a Rajput man, and everything to do with marrying a man. Any man. That should answer any question pertaining to “where’s the fire?”
So, I married a Rajput and here is what happened. Or rather, what didn’t. I did not turn into some Padmavati, ready to squander my life to protect the honour of the husband. Yes, my husband is a man of great valour and he has actually gone right ahead and done what any right thinking modern Rajput would do – he has pledged his life to the nation. Just the nation. That leaves me with plenty of time to squander while I wait for him to run out of ammunition.
But when you marry a Rajput, you realise that he never ever runs out of ammunition. He is so full of himself that even when he opens his mouths, there is a drizzle of bullets. And once he opens his mouth, he literally forgets to shut it. So the drizzle pretty much turns into a downpour where you are drenched in a soul scraping war of words. Where you are dishonourable because you waged war by replying back to someone you should actually die for.
While on the subject of Padmavati, Rajputs, Love, Life and Death, how can I forget the R word? Not R for Rajput – R for romance. Like Anuja Chauhan recently pointed out in her article for the First Post, these men will go to any level to proclaim undying love. That may not sound like a problem to many. In fact, it may make women across the globe positively ecstatic as they look for the cheapest tickets to India to find themselves a Rajput groom. But hold your low airfare ticketing horses. There is more to this than what meets the eye.
A Rajput will go right ahead and woo you whether or not you want to get wooed. Meaning, in the middle of a conversation regarding an issue you both may be facing, or in the middle of a fight, he will suddenly tell you how utterly gorgeous you are and how you give him sleepless nights when he is away, thinking about the other men who must be fantasizing about you because of your WhatsApp profile picture – which he wants you to change. Because every man seems like Allaudin Khilji to him. Now, during the first year or so, this might seem cute. But try it for a decade.
It becomes painfully infuriating that this man has taken you for some sort of bimbette who can only expect romance – not an engaging conversation, not a sane discussion, not a peaceful hearing out, no understanding, no respect, nothing. The only time a Rajput husband will be nice to you is when he sees your mood as a challenge that he has to overcome – a dark cloud that he has to dispel. The minute you smile that sunny smile, he will draw his sword and see that as a challenge too. The dark clouds must return. This is his way of playing hide and seek with his beloved. This is his idea of romance – drawing swords and dueling – till death do us part.
While he is busy romancing me when I am trying to drill some sense into him, the Padmavati in me stirs, ready to set him alight. I can almost see him running away with his back side on fire, still blowing me air kisses. Uff!
So please ask all those Rajput men protesting against Padmavati the movie due to some misplaced respect for Padmavati the lady, to stop making so much noise. Really, if this is how Rajput men respect their wives, then I am quite done. Imagine all this noise for a supposedly fictional character – what would they have done if Padmavati was real? Shudder, shudder.
Fictional Piece from the upcoming book Dreams of the Morrow