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Raktakarabi


Raktakarabi a symbolic drama of rabindranath tagore. The play was written at the hilly resort of Shillong in the year 1330 BS. At that time, it was given the title of Yaksapuri. It was renamed as Raktakabari when it was published in the Ashwin 1331 issue of the periodical Prabasi. The play depicts how human greed denies the beauties and naturalness of life, makes it a mere machine and a necessary ingredient for production, and what shapes human protests take against such a state. The story in brief of this play is as follows.

The royal ideal of the king of Yaksapuri is exploitation of the citizenry; he has an insatiable greed for money. The coolies of the gold mine get burnt in the fire of that greed. In the eyes of the king, the coolies are not human beings, they are mere tools for acquiring gold; they are only small parts of machines bearing the sign and number like 47a, 269f and so on. They do not have any value as human. Here, humanism and humanity are by the shackles of machine. There is no expression of life at Yaksapuri. Nandini is a symbol of life's complete expression' love and beauty. Under the spell of his greed, the king of Yaksapuri does not feel the touch of joy in Nandini; the ascetic does not feel it because of his craving for religious reform; the pundit does not get it due to his scholarly and slavish instincts. Nandini, the symbol of love and beauty' beckons everybody from outside the iron net of Yaksapuri. Everybody becomes excited in a moment at this mirthful touch of free life. The king wants to get possession of Nandini, similar to the manner in which he extracts gold ' by force. But love and beauty cannot be obtained in this way. So the king cannot get Nandini despite her being within his reach. Similarly, the local leader and pundit, Kishore and Kenaram ' all extended their hands beyond the net out of their eagerness to live in life's abundance. But Nandini loves Ranjan and has therefore awakened the feeling of love in him. But Ranjan is tied to the bond of machine. This machine delinks his love from his life; the poet believed that this was the characteristics of a mechanized life. Nandini's lover has to be sacrificed at the altar of mechanization; and through this, life triumphs in order to search and get back love once more. Such point of view has been reflected in many poems, plays and stories of Rabindranath. The poet searched for a balance between materialistic mechanization and the nature of life in the play Raktakarabi. [Shamima Akhter]