Points : Situation - Consists mainly of Kacha houses - The people of the village and their work - The centers of interests in the village - Lambardars - The important men of the village - Life of the villagers.
My village is in one of the backward districts of Sind. It is ten miles from the nearest railway station, and about sixteen miles from the district town. A kachcha, dusty road runs by my village, which is made use of by the people who go on foot, ride a horse or journey in a tum-tum. The road is, however, uneven and full of ruts, and becomes almost impassable when the rains fall.
My village consists mostly of kachcha houses. These houses have low roofs, one door and generally no windows. Mostly these houses have only one room, which serves as a kitchen, bed-room, reception-room, store-room, and nursery. Some of the houses have a court-yard also, where he cattle are kept in summer. The lanes are very dirty. These lanes are littered with the refuse and rubbish of houses and have also puddles of dirty water, which breed swarms of lusty mosquitoes. It is this insanitary condition of the village, which renders it an easy prey to malaria plague and other epidemics.
The village is inhabited mostly by farmers. These men are models of industry. The village has barbers with none too keen wits and dull razors, carpenters with primitive instruments, shoe makers whose shoes are known more for durability than for beauty and blacksmiths who make ploughshares and sickles. My village has also a dispensary where sore eyes are cured, and fever is treated.
The centres of interest, however, in the village are the school, to which most of the boys repair; and the mosque where the muezzin calls the faithful to prayer five times a day. The village has a couple of inns also, where travelers take shelter for the night. It has also the tomb of a saint.
The most important men in my village are the two mighty lambardars. They are not on the best of terms with each other as is to be expected, and therefore the village is full of petty intrigues and malicious party spirit. The patwari was dreaded in days gone by, but now he has lost much of his prestige. The Head Master of the school is a worthy man, and the adult school run by him contains pupils from the ages of 15 to 20. The co-operative bank in our village is managed by a clever man, who gives loans only to his own favorites. Even the members of the punchayat are not above suspicion.