Word Meaning, Summary, Important Questions Of Chapter 2 Lost Spring | Class 12
Hindi Meaning Of Difficult Words | Chapter 2 Lost Spring
About The Poet | Anees Jung | Chapter 2 Lost Spring
Anees Jung is the author of several books. She began her career as a writer and an editor of Youth Times and has been a columnist for many major newspapers in India as well as abroad. She inherits her literary tradition from her parents who were renowned scholars and poets. In ‘Lost Spring: Stories of Stolen Childhood’ she exposes a national shame regarding poverty, child labor and children wasting their childhood in petty jobs to earn money. Anees’ writing style follows journalistic approach which is factual, straight forward and pertinent. The following is an excerpt taken from her book, Lost Spring: Stories of Stolen Childhood.
Short Summary Of Chapter 2 Lost Spring In English
“Sometimes I find a Rupee in the garbage” Saheb a ragpicker, searching for gold in garbage. His family is from Bangladesh which they left long ago. The author saw Saheb digging and picking garbage for his livelihood every day. One day the author suggested him to go to school, to which he replies that there is no school nearby. She jokingly told him that she would open a school. After some time the little boy walked up to her to ask about the school about which the author felt embarrassed as this promise was also like many other promises made to poor children that remain unfulfilled.
One day, the author asked the little boy’s name and found out that his name was Saheb-e-Alam which meant lord of the universe, ironically. There were many ragpickers and most of them didn’t have chappals. Anees was told that going barefoot was a way to follow tradition which she realizes as an excuse to poverty. The author is reminded of a man who as a young boy prayed for a pair of shoes. Thirty years later the author revisits that place and saw a new priest’s home and a boy there, wearing socks and shoes. But the author was still sad thinking about the ragpickers who were still shoeless.
The ragpickers lived on the outskirts of Delhi at Seemapuri. They lived in small mud structures with roof of tin and tarpaulin. They were deprived of basic amenities. Food was the most important thing for them so that they don’t have to sleep on empty stomach. Saheb told the author that sometimes he found a ten rupee note or a coin in the garbage and that was his gold.
One winter morning Anees noticed Saheb with tennis shoes. Though they were mismatched with his faded clothes, they were very dear to him. One morning the author noticed Saheb with a steel container, going to a milk booth. He had got a job at a tea-stall with a pay of eight hundred rupees plus meals. But the author realizes that he no longer looked carefree because he had been burdened by the responsibility of a job.
“I want to drive a car”
The author then tells the readers about Mukesh a young boy who worked in a (bangle) glass factory in Firozabad. Mukesh belonged to a family which is engaged in bangle-making, like many other families. The author comments on the ignorance of the people there who involve their children in glass industry at such a young age. Mukesh happily agrees to take the author to his home which is being rebuilt. They enter a half build shack. Food was being cooked on a firewood stove by a young woman. She was Mukesh’s elder brother’s wife, the bahu of the family. When the older man entered the house she pulled her veil close to her face. The older man was a bangle maker. He worked hard all his life first as a tailor and then as a bangle maker. He could not give his children education but taught them the art of bangle making.
Mukesh’s grandmother believes in destiny, she also believes that bangle making is a God given lineage. Young boys and girls work in dark places and become prone to lose their eye sight at an early age. Savita is a young girl dressed in pink She works with her parents and even in dark her hands move fast. She does not realizes the significance of bangles in the life of Indian women at this young age. But she will realizes it once she is married. The situation is ironical because all girl child laborers will eventually become brides and wear those bangles. The old lady sitting next to her has lost her eyesight and complains of poverty. They had enough to eat despite all the hard work.
A common complaint of all families involved in bangle-making is lack of money for food. Nothing has changed since a long time. The author gives suggestions to avoid the circle of middlemen. But the people there tells her that if they get organised they would be beaten up by police and put in jail. These poor people have no leader and they are caught in the ruthless cycle of poverty, injustice and greed
The author feels they are present two distinct worlds. One is people caught in the clutches of poverty and burdened by the stigma of caste. Secondly, these people are also caught in the vicious circle of middlemen, policemen, and politicians. It is because of such people that the children are weighed down with responsibilities at such a tender age. The children accept it as naturally as their parents did. No one dares to deviate. The author sees the daring attitude in Mukesh and hopes he will fulfill his dream one day. Mukesh insists on becoming a motor mechanic. He is willing to walk long way to the garage to give wings to his dreams. At the same time, Mukesh is firmly rooted to the ground. He does not dream of flying airplanes. The author feels that may be this is due to the fact that few planes fly over Firozabad.
Important Previous Year Questions From Chapter 2 Lost Spring
SAI (2 marks)
- How bad were the living conditions in which Mukesh and his family survived? difficulties faced by the (2020)
- Mention any two bangle sellers of Firozabad. (2020)
- How is Mukesh different from the other bangle makers of Firozabad? (Delhi 2014)
- What job did Saheb take up? Was he happy? (AI 2014)
- In what sense is garbage gold to the ragpickers? (AI 2014 C)
- Why did Saheb’s parents leave Dhaka and migrate to India? (Delhi 2014 C)
- What is Mukesh’s dream? Do you think he will be able to fulfill his dream? Why not? Why? (Delhi 2014 C)
- Whom does Anees Jung blame for the sorry plight of the bangle makers? (AI 2014 C)
- How the steel canister was burden for him? (AI 2013)
- Who is Mukesh ? What is his dream ?(Delhi 2012)
- Is Saheb happy working at the tea stall? Why/Why not? (Delhi 2012)
- Why could the bangle-makers not organize themselves into a co-operative? (AI 2012)
SA II (3 marks)
- “Listening to them, I see two distinct worlds .” In the context of Mukesh, the bangle maker’s son, which two worlds is Anees Jung referring to? (2018)
- Describe the irony in Saheb’s name.(Delhi 2016)
- What does the reference to chappals in ‘Lost Spring’ tell us about the economic condition of the ragpickers ?(AI 2016)
- How did Saheb’s life change at the tea stall?(Foreign 2016)
- What is Mukesh’s attitude towards the family business of making bangles? (Foreign 2016)
- What did garbage mean to the children of Seemapuri and to their parents? (AI 2015)
- What does Saheb look for in the garbage dumps ? (AI 2015)
- “It is his Karam, his destiny,” What is Mukesh’s family’s attitude towards their situation?(AI 2015)
- Describe Mukesh as an ambitious person. (Foreign 2015)
- What kind of gold did the people of Seemapuri look for in the garbage?(Foreign 2015)
LAI (5 marks)
- Most of us do not raise our voice against injustice in our society and tend to remain mute spectators. Anees Jung in her article, “Lost spring” vividly highlights the miserable life of street children and bangle makers of Firozabad. She wants us to act Which qualities does she want the children to develop? (Delhi 2014 C)
LA II (6 marks)
- “Seemapuri, a place on the periphery of Delhi yet miles away from it, metaphorically” Explain. (Delhi 2019)
- Garbage to them is gold. How do ragpickers of Seemapuri survive? (Delhi 2015)
- Describe the difficulties the bangle makers of Firozabad have to face in their lives. (Delhi 2015)
- Describe the circumstances which keep the workers in the bangle industry in poverty. (Delhi, 2015)
- How is Mukesh’s attitude towards his situation different from that of Saheb? Why? (Delhi 2015)
- “It is his Karam, his destiny” that made Mukesh’s grandfather go blind. How did Mukesh disprove this belief by choosing a new vocation and making his own destiny? (AI 2015)
LA IV (10 marks)
- Give a brief account of the life and activities of the people like Saheb-e-Alam settled in Seemapuri. (Delhi 2011)
- “Lost Spring’ explains the grinding poverty and traditions that condemn thousands of people to alifeofabject poverty. Do you agree? Why/Why not? (AI 2011)
Download Free pdf Previous Year Paper For NCERT English Class 12
Answer Of Chapter 2 Lost Spring For The Above Questions
1. Mukesh and
his family lived in deplorable conditions, in stinking lanes choked with
garbage, with crumbling walls, wobbly doors, no windows, crowded with families
of humans and animals coexisting in a primeval state.
2. They work in
the dingy cells without air and light. Dust from polishing bangles affect their
eyes making them lose their eyesight very often. They are not able to organize
themselves, look for other opportunities due to bullying and exploitation by
the politicians, authorities, moneylenders and middlemen.
3. Mukesh is
different from other bangle makers of Firozabad because he dares to dream. He
refuses to carry on the family tradition of bangle making. Instead, he insists
on being his own master. He wants to become a motor mechanic and is focussed
and determined to achieve it.
4. Saheb took up
a job at a tea-stall, which paid him 800 rupees and all his meals. No, he was
not happy with the job because his ‘carefree’ days were over, he now had a
master to work under; he was no longer his own master.
5. Garbage is
like gold to the ragpickers in the sense that it is a means of sustenance for
them. Garbage gives them their daily bread and provides a roof over their
parents left Dhaka because repeated floods swept away their fields and homes
leaving them on the verge of starvation. This led to their migration to India,
where they hoped to find better living conditions and livelihood opportunities.
7. Mukesh’s aim
in life is to become a motor mechanic. Yes, it is indeed possible for Mukesh to
achieve his dreams through hard work and determination. He is willing to walk
all the way to the garage and learn even though the garage is quite far from
8. For the sorry
plight of the bangle makers, Anees Jung blames the sahukars, policemen,
middlemen, bureaucrats, politicians and, to quite an extent, the lineage of the
bangle makers and the stigmas with their caste.
9. The steel
canister was a burden for Saheb both literally and metaphorically because
unlike the plastic bag he carried around on his shoulder as a ragpicker, the
steel canister was much heavier. Moreover, before he started working at the tea
stall, Saheb was his own master. He was free to go anywhere. He had now lost
his freedom; he now had a master to work under. Although the job paid him
rupees 800 per month, Saheb did not seem much enthusiastic about it. Along with
his independence, he had also lost his opportunity for an education.
10. Mukesh is
the son of a poor bangle-maker in Firozabad. Although Mukesh helps his father
to make bangles, he dreams of becoming a car mechanic for which he is willing
to walk the long distance from his home to the garage where he wishes to train.
11. No, Saheb is
not happy working at the tea stall. Although he is paid 800 rupees and is given
all his meals, it bothers him that he is no longer his own master. His face has
lost the carefree look. The steel canister seems heavier than the plastic bag
he used to carry so lightly over his shoulder. The bag was his, the canister
belongs to the man who owns the tea-shop
12. The bangle
makers cannot escape the vicious circle of exploitation by middlemen, money
lenders, police and bureaucrats. They fear that organising themselves into
cooperative might be treated as being illegal. They are scared of being hauled
up and beaten by the police. In addition to the miseries, they also have to
face many caste related stigmas. The bangle makers cannot escape their lineage.
Years of exploitation has left them timid. This is why there are no leaders who
would raise their problems.
13. The two
worlds, which Anees Jung is referring to are – one in which Mukesh and his
family is living in extreme poverty, unable to shake off the burden of caste
related stigma; the second one consists of the sahukars, middlemen, the keepers
of the law, politicians, etc. who are ready to exploit the already powerless
oppressed class of the society.
14. The full
name of Saheb is Saheb-e-Alam, which means Lord of the Universe. He does not
know the meaning of his name. The irony here is that Saheb in reality is a
ragpicker and a refugee from Bangladesh. He is not the Lord of the Universe
narrator, Anees Jung feels that the rag pickers not wearing chappals is a
subtle reference to their economic condition, which is a perpetual state of
poverty. They live in unhygienic conditions, and due to their hand-to-mouth
existence, the children are forced into labour early in life. As a result, they
are denied the opportunity of studying and escaping such a life.
16. Refer to
attitude towards the family business of making bangles is that of reluctance.
He wants to break free from the family tradition and dares to rebel. Mukesh
dreams of becoming a motor mechanic for which he is willing to walk the long
distance from his home to the garage every day.
18. The writer
says that garbage is gold for the ragpickers because for children, garbage is
wrapped in wonder. They expect to get some coins, notes or valuables in it. If
fate permits, sometimes, they find a rupee or even a ten-rupee note. For
adults, garbage is a means of livelihood.
19. Refer to
family’s attitude towards their situation is that of mute acceptance. They view
bangle making as their destiny. They do not dream of any other option because
there is no will, to take the initiative, left in them.
21. Refer to
22. Refer to
23. Anees Jung,
in ‘Lost Spring vividly highlights the miserable life of street children and
bangle makers of Firozabad. Through children, like Saheb, Savita and Mukesh,
she delves deep into the poverty and tradition, which forces a life of
exploitation on these three and many others like them.
It is sad that
they are caught in the vicious circle of poverty and exploitation generations
after generations. It is not easy to escape it because there is the stigma of
caste in which they are born. Moreover, the sahukars, the middlemen, policemen,
keepers of law, bureaucrats, etc. make their lives more difficult for them than
it already is, Anees Jung wants us to act, raise our voice against the
injustice prevailing in our society. The underprivileged often find themselves
helpless and at the mercy of their exploiters. Thus, Anees Jung wants the
children to develop compassion for the oppressed and the will and courage to
work for social and economic changes in the society.
24. Seemapuri is
a place on the outskirts of Delhi where 10,000 ragpickers, who migrated from
Bangladesh to Delhi in 1971, live with their families. They live in structures
of mud, with roofs of tin and tarpaulin, devoid of sewage, drainage or running
water. No one can imagine that such a place exists on the periphery of Delhi,
the capital of India. It stands in stark contrast to the metropolitan city of
In Delhi, there
is luxury and affluence, there are a host of opportunities and dreams. On the
contrary, in Seemapuri there is squalor, hopelessness and despair. The
inhabitants here live in abject poverty and are illegal occupants. Ironically,
the ragpickers have lived here for thirty years without a sanction or an
identity. The only thing they do have are the ration cards, which not only
enable them to buy grains, but also get their names on the voters’ list There
is no chance for the people of Seemapuri to strive towards the attainment of
the opportunities offered by Delhi. Thus, although Seemapuri is located at the
periphery of Delhi, in the real sense, Delhi is as far as miles away from it.
Ragpickers of Seemapuri emigrated to Delhi from Bangladesh, in 1971 in the
hopes of a bright and promising future. However, their situation in the city is
not as comfortable as they expected. The ragpickers of Seemapuri live in
structures of mud, with roofs of tin and tarpaulin. It lacks proper sewage and
drainage system and running water. All these years, they have lived without an
identity and they are still living like that. In spite of no proper identity
and permits, they are surviving. They all have ration cards, which puts them on
voters’ list. This enables them to buy grain. Survival is all that matters to
them. This is why they pitch their tents wherever there is food. Garbage and
ragpicking are means of survival for the people in Seemapuri, it earns them
their daily bread and puts a roof over their head. Sometimes, while scrounging,
the garbage. finding money, whether one rupee or ten, it the highlight of their
day, especially for the children; it gives them hope. Therefore, the writer is
right when she says, “garbage to them is gold.”
26. Difficulties faced by the bangle makers
Firozabad are many. They live in a state of perpetual poverty, in
ready-to-crumble houses, crowded with a number of families. Besides remaining
uneducated for the rest of their lives, they have to work extremely hard for
long hours in the glass furnaces in high temperature. Since they work in the
dark and dingy cells, many lose their eyesight at a young age. Their
difficulties are t limited to just health problems. They are set not at a much
deeper level. The bangle makers are burdened by the stigma of the caste in
which they are born. An adult bangle maker knows nothing except how to make
bangles. So, that is all that he can teach his young ones and this continues
for generations. The bangle makers cannot escape the vicious circle of
exploitation by middlemen, money lenders, police and bureaucrats. They cannot
even organize themselves into a cooperative due to the fear that it might be
treated as being illegal. This is why there are no leaders who would raise
their problems. The bangle makers continue to face apathy and injustice all
27. Refer to
attitude towards his situation is different from that of Saheb because unlike
Saheb, Mukesh is ambitious. Mukesh has his roots in Firozabad. He is born in a
family of bangle makers and must follow his father’s footsteps for now.
However, he wants to break the family tradition and become a motor mechanic.
Saheb, on the other hand, is a rootless migrant from Bangladesh who is content
being a ragpicker at Seemapuri. Although, he fancies the idea of going to
school, he starts working at a tea stall because the salary is good. Mukesh too
is greatly unhappy about his prevailing poverty. However, he is determined to
change it. He is ready to walk a long distance every day to a garage and train
to become a motor mechanic
29. Mukesh had
seen his parents and other bangle makers of Firozabad suffer all their life. He
had witnessed them being unable to escape the Vicious circle of poverty and
exploitation. While others believed that it was their destiny to be born poor
and poverty stricken, Mukesh wanted to disprove this belief by choosing a new
line of Work. Unlike other children of his age in the town of Firozabad, he had
the courage to break free from the family vocation of bangle-making. He wanted
to be a motor mechanic and make his own destiny. He was determined to achieve
his goal and was prepared to work hard for it. Although the garage, where
Mukesh wanted to train to be a motor mechanic, was quite far from his house, he
was willing to walk the long distance for the sake of his dreams
30. In Lost
Spring’ Anees Jung observes that the life and activities of the people like
Saheb-e-Alam depends wholly on garbage. For them it is no less than gold, in
fact, it is their daily bread. The poor ragpickers are often barefoot, which
she thinks is an excuse to explain a perpetual state of poverty”.
Although, Saheb-e-Alam wants an education, he and other ragpickers are
unschooled. (Later, Saheb too takes up a job at a tea stall.) They are migrants
(squatters) from Bangladesh, who came to Delhi in 197 Presently, live in
structures of mud with roofs of tin and tarpaulin, devoid of sewage, drainage
or running water. They pitch their tents wherever they find food. They have
lived in Seemapuri for more than thirty years without identity and without
permits. However, they carry their ration cards. No matter how much hardship
they face, the ragpickers of Seemapuri have no intention of going back to their
31. In ‘Lost
Spring Anees Jung analyses the grinding poverty and traditions, which condemn
thousands of people to a life of abject misery and the slum children to
exploitation. The basis of her analysis are the ragpickers of Seemapuri where
she meets a little boy named Saheb and Mukesh, whose family is one of the
families who have been the bangle makers of Firozabad for generations. Both
these children want education so that they can either escape their situation or
change it. But, Saheb and Mukesh and others like them are caught in the vicious
circle of poverty, apathy and injustice and are affected by the greed of
others. This is why, education and healthy and clean living conditions are a
distant dream for them. Every day, they have to face various hardships. Yet,
they cannot organize themselves into cooperative due to the fear that it might
be treated as being illegal. Ultimately, slum children like Saheb and Mukesh
have to carry forward the family occupation or find odd jobs to earn a living.
In the process, their childhood is the lost spring of their life.