Revolutionary by Kodavatiganti Kutumbara
Telugu original by Kodavatiganti Kutumbarao, in Yuva, January 1978. Translated and posted with permission by Ananda Kishore.
He got married. He had a god's idol in his prayer room. She brought an idol of a goddess along with her. Who should have a higher preference in the prayer room? The god or the goddess?
They summoned the priest. "Your quarrel is uncalled for. The goddess is nothing but the god's wife!" the priest said.
The husband and the wife compromised. They gave birth to four children. The parents joined them in Christian schools, for they wouldn't come up in independent India without a foreign education. Before they finished their education, they said only Christ was god, it was okay to wear a cross but it was primitive to worship gods and goddesses.
Again a conflict arose. The priest was summoned. "Who is Christ after all? He is our Krishna himself. There is really only one god. We give him several names and quarrel among ourselves," the priest said.
They got their daughter married. The son-in-law came to their house and saw the prayer room, full of idols and pictures of Christ. "You're still in the Stone Age, aren't you?" he threw the idols and pictures out of the window.
His father-in-law and brothers-in-law labeled him a revolutionary and handed him over to the police. They didn't charge him an atheist; they charged him under several sections saying he was against property rights, was an armed revolutionary, was trying to destroy the constitution.
The son-in-law agreed to all the charges.