This story is all about a simple village girl named Bholi. Her real name was Sulekha. But fate deceived her and when she was ten months old, she felt off the cot damaging some part of her brain. As a result, she could pick up speech only after she was five years old, but she stammered. Later on, when she was two – years old, she had an attack of small pox that left her with blank spots all over the body. The other children often made fun of her and mimicked her. Therefore, she talked very little.
Ramlal had seven children in all – three sons and four daughters. Bholi was the youngest. All other were healthy and strong except Bholi. Bholi was seven years old when a primary school opened in their village. The tehsildar came to perform the opening ceremony of the school. He told Ramlal that as a revenue official and as a representative of the government in t he village, he should send his daughter to the school and set an example before the villagers. When he consulted his wife about the issue, his wife did not agree with him. Yet she decided to send Bholi to the school.
The next day, Bholi was given a bath, and a new dress to wear. Her mother mated his hair and then she was sent to the school. When her father left her in the school, she set in a corner in the class. When her teacher asked her name, she stammered and the children started laughing. At this Bholi started weeping. But the teacher’s voice was soft and soothing. It encouraged her a lot and finally she could tell her full name. Then the teacher told her that if she would come daily to school, she would speak without a stammer and one day she would become the most educated girl in the village. Then no one will dare to laugh at her. Then they will listen her carefully.
Years passed and the village now turned into a small town. One night Ramlal consulted his wife about the proposal made by Bishamber, a grocer in the neighbouring village. His wife readily agreed to it. Bholi was also listening this conversational. The day of her marriage came. When the bridegroom was about to garland her, some lady pulled her veil down showing her face to him. The bridegroom had a quick glance at her face and noticed pox marks on her face. At this, He asked Ramlal to give him five thousand rupees as dowry in order to marry that ugly girl. After some arguments, Ramlal handed over the money to Bishambar. But Bholi asked his father to take money back from him as she did not want to marry that old lame and greedy person. Everybody was surprised because Bholi was not stammering at all. The bridegroom went back with his baraat. Ramlal could not lift his head due to shame and grief. He asked Bholi as who will marry her now. But Bholi said to him that she would serve his parents in their old age and teach in the same school where she had learnt so much.
short questions & answers
1. Why was Ramlal worried about Bholi and not about his other children?
Ans: - Ramlal was worried about Bholi because she had neither good looks nor intelligence. She stammered also she had pox marks on her face. Ramlal worried about her that nobody would marry her.
2. Why did the Tehsildar come to Ramlal’s village? What did he ask Ramlal to do?
Ans: - The Tehsildar came to Ramlal’s village. He was to perform an opening ceremony of the new school there. He asked Ramlal to send his daughters to school. If was to set an example to villagers. They would send their sons and daughters to school.
3. Who is the artist in the story? What is masterpiece? How did she become a masterpiece?
Ans: - the Artist in the story is the Teacher. The masterpiece is Bholi. She becomes the teacher’s masterpiece. It is because she is now not a simpleton. She becomes the ideal human being. She knows now what is good and what is bad.
4. Why didn’t Bholi’s mother want to send Bholi to school?
Ans: - Bholi’s mother neglected Bholi. She didn’t like Bholi being sent to school, no one would marry her. She had an ugly face.
5. Why did Bholi look about her in school with ‘fear laden eyes’?
Ans: - Bholi watched school. She was amazed to see so many rooms. They all had so many girls in them, the girls sat on the mats. They read book or wrote on slates. So he had fear in her eyes. She had come to school for the first time.
6. Why was Sulekha nick named Bholi? Why did Sulekha start stammering?
Ans: - Sulekha was nick named Bholi because she was a simpleton. Anyone could befool her. She had fallen from a cot. She had damaged her head. Some part of her brain might have been damaged. She started speaking at the age of five. She stammered also.
7. What misfortunes did Bholi face since her childhood?
Ans: - Bholi could be called unfortunate. She fell off the cot headlong. Some part of her brain got damaged. Then she had a small pox, when she was two years old. It left her body disfigured with permanent black spots. She stammered and could not speak properly.
8. How did Bholi’s mother favour Bishamber as a suitable husband for Bholi?
Ans: - Bholi’s mother favored Bishamber because he had a big shop. He had a house of his own. He had several thousands in the bank. He did not know Bholi had pox marks on her body. He was also not demanding any dowry.
9. Why were all the relatives amazed to hear Bholi speak?
Ans: - Bholi always stammered. But now she spoke perfectly well in a clear voice. She said, she would not marry an old greedy man. Her saying startled all. They had thought she was like a dumb driven cow.
text book questions & answers
1. Why is bholis father worried about her?
Ans: - Bholi’s father is worried about bholi. It is because she has neither good
looks nor intelligence like his other children.
2. For what unusual reason is Bholi sent to school?
Ans:- Bholi is sent to school not for education .But she is sent to worry her
teacher about her, this is the unusual reason .
3. Does she find her teacher different from the people at home?
Ans: - She finds her teacher different from the people at home. She finds the teacher’s voice soft and soothing. In all her life she had never been called like that as the teacher called her by her name.
4. Does Bholi enjoy her first day at school?
Ans: -Bholi does not enjoy her first day at school. It is because she is fearful of
5. Why does Bholi’s parents accept Bishamber Marriage proposal?
Ans: - The Bholi’s parents accept Bishamber .it had reason bishamber Has a
big shop and his own house. He also does not ask for dowry.
6. Why does the marriage not take place?
Ans: - The marriage does not take place. It is because her bridegroom demands
a dowry of five thousand rupees. Bholi refuses to money such a person
who demands downy.
Thinking about it
1. Bholi had many apprehensions about going to school what made her feed that she was going to a batter place then her home?
Ans: - Bholi had many apprehension about going to school when her father was going to take her to school on the first day she was afraid that she might be sold like a cow her father understood that she was nervous. So he ordered his wife to dress up the girl in decent cloths, oil was rubbed into Bholi’s dry and matted hair. Now she felt that she was going to a better place than her home.
2. How did Bholi’s teacher play an important role in changing the course of her life?
Ans: - Bholi’s teacher changed the direction of Bholi’s life through her love and affection; she filled her mind with hope and faith. She told Bholi to cast out all fear from her mind. It was because of her guidance that Bholi developed her personality now she could face all the problems of life with great courage and confidence.
3. Why did Bholi at first agree to an unequal match? Why did she later reject the marriage? What does this tell us about her?
Ans: - Bholi knew about her bridegroom who was old and lame person still she agreed to this unequal match for the sake of her father’s honour.
But later she refused to marry Bishamber because he demanded dowry. Therefore, she put down her foot and said “no” to this marriage.
4. Bholi’s real name is sulekha we are told this right at the beginning. But only in the last but one paragraph of the story is Bholi called Sulekha again. Why do you think she is called Sulekha at that point in the story?
Ans: - Bholi is called Sulekha near the end of the story. This is very significant because Bholi is now tno more Bholi (a simple tone). She had grown wiser and more self confidence due to her education and her teacher’s training. She proves that education is like a philosopher’s stone which can turn a base metal into gold.
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