The Adventures of Bhanuman (The non-violent superhero) by Biswajit Dasgupta

With an introduction by Saptarshi Sanyal


Dear Readers, Let me introduce you to the protagonist of my story. Bhanu Man is the anti-super-hero; he is 5'10", weighs 85 kilos and makes no issues about any of his six chins. He loves food and just goes on adding weight. During the day, he is Bhanu Man! At night he works for a multinational company, as a lowly paid tele-caller; he is bawled at for his 'oriya' accent and gets the worst appraisals from everyone. He derives his energy from the reaction of the sun and beer in a complicated chemical process called 'alcosynthesis'. His back up power comes from artificial light. His main job is to save the world, but only from ecological disasters...

It was a windy morning when trees were crying leaves into the river. Winter had arrived and summer was nearly over. Even the birds had packed up and gone. They were flying south where the wind was not so strong. People sat and drank their coffees and the newspapers had already arrived. The background was filled with the noise of the local television reporter, reporting yesterday's events. The milk van had completed its daily rounds of supply and was heading back to the garage. The health freaks were braving the chilly winds and running. All in all, it was just another normal dawn in the small town of Tintunagar.

Tintunagar was a small coastal town, which mainly survived on fishing. In fact, eight to half past eight was when the local fishermen would return home with their fill. Today it was ten minutes to eight. Little did the innocent civilians know that the lively town was about to be transformed into a mass graveyard! The elders had always boasted of Tintunagar's history. There was never a problem. Tragedy, they thought was something to be experienced in a fictional novel.
A German submarine, in one of their routine drills had mistakenly fired six torpedoes. The torpedoes were heading straight for the town. First-mate Charlie was quick to understand the blunder but it was all too late. He had wired the situation to the base but they were unable to react swiftly.

In four minutes and twenty-three seconds, the torpedoes would strike and Tintunagar would be history. The captain of the vessel, Lieutenant Conrad immediately got hold of their satellite phone and dialed a toll free number. He knew that this was the last resort. The number would connect to Bhanuman and only he could save the impending disaster. One minute and six seconds had already expired and time was running out. Maybe it was all too late thought Conrad and prayed fervently.
Bhanuman was holidaying in Venus, getting his powers charged when the call arrived. He had no time to waste. He raised his bottom, gulped his beer and headed towards earth. With the speed of 1602 rocket ships and 9002 Boeing 747s, Bhanuman was traveling at 1.3 million miles per second. He would reach Tintunagar forty two seconds before the first torpedo was going to strike. Bhanuman's mind had already started computing. The task at hand wasn't easy. He weighed the options before him. It was all a matter of seconds and he had to act fast.

Legend has it that Bhanuman's mind worked faster than his flying and Bhanuman always managed to live up to that reputation. He knew that in his life there could not be a retake. He was always presented with the problem at the last minute and his decisions were made in the split of a second.









Web graphics and design by Smita Maitra Background image by Kabir Kashyap