Sonargachi, the sex capital of the East, infamous for its prostitution and sleazy red light areas. Pick up a copy of the Newsweek or any other news magazine, and if there is an article about prostitution in India, I can bet my ass Sonargachi is mentioned in it. Tell any taxi driver “Sonargachi” and you can’t help notice a sly smile on his face.
I’ve been working here in Cal for almost 2 months now. I’ve seen places in North India that I’ve never seen before these past two months. But Sonargachi, which lies right here in the very city I go to Office everyday, has never passed before my eyes. Everyday I tell myself, “Kima, just for the heck of it, go see what’s it like”.
So one fine day, I left Office early, took a long drag on my cigarette and then told the taxi driver to go to Sonargachi. He smiled. I didn’t.
While on the way, the driver looked at me and asked whether he’ll wait for me! I was about to tell him that I just wanted to see what the place is like and I’m not going there to “do it”, but then, I realized it sounded so lame and he’s never going to believe me, so I just said we’ll see.
Even when I’m with friends, now and then, the topic on Sonargachi would spring up. Some of my friends even tease me not to go over there too regularly (typical guy’s talk). Well, here I am, about to see my first red light district.
Got into a conversation with my driver. He told me Sonargachi is situated right on the main road. And the name of that road is Mahatma Gandhi Road. How ironic! :)
He turned to me and said we’ve reached. As soon as we passed a petrol pump, for the first time in my life I saw prostitutes. Thousands of them. All lined up on the pavement luring customers with their charm.
I was disappointed. Utterly disappointed like Hell. They were nothing like what I expected to see. Maybe I’ve seen too many Hollywood movies. Coz here I am expecting to see prostitutes in laced stockings, 8 inches high heels, mini skirts revealing more than what’s necessary, black leather jacket over a teeny weeny blouse or spaghetti, deep red lipsticks and black eye liner over-done around the face and swinging a black leather hand bag wildly while chewing a gum.
Nah. They were nothing like that. A majority of them were wearing saris and salwars while a few of them were dressed in tees and jeans. And the ones wearing jeans, man, I couldn’t help notice that their jeans were so out dated. Most of them were wearing those 80’s jeans type that goes tight around the ankle and making their asses look so flat. And a whole bunch of them had too much make-up on, making them look so horrible.
As we drove past them, my dear driver who seems to be enjoying his time here, slowed downed a bit. The moment he slowed down, hundreds of these girls ran towards my taxi! I screamed at him to drive on!
Very soon we drove past the place and I told him to take a U turn and we’ll go home. He turned to me and ask whether I was not interested so I told him the truth that I just wanted to see the place. He then told me that if that was the case, then, the main Sonargachi is inside the alley from M.G.Road. and he’s willing to show me around for free!
What the heck. So we parked the car on the other side of the road after making a U turn and made our way INTO Sonargachi. As we crossed the street, he told me that the girls I saw are 50 bucks girls. I was like, what the fuck, you get girls for 50 bucks???? That’s even cheaper than the amount I spend on cigarettes everyday.
He told me that there are much better girls inside. There are 100 bucks girls, 500 bucks girls, and even 5000 bucks girls! Whoah. I asked him how many times he’s been here and he just laughed. Man can you ask for a better driver than this? He’s God sent!
As we walked into the alley, he told me not to make any eye contact with the girls or they will rush towards me. That, my friend, was a bit difficult to do. But yeah, I did try not to look at all these girls surrounding me and waiting to have sex )
Inside Sonargachi, there were buildings after buildings, which my driver told me were places where people do it. I saw a couple of guys, really mean looking and “dacoitic”, staring right at me (the tamilian word “rowdy” would best fit them). He told me that those guys are pimps and are here to see that no one makes trouble in their area. The more they stared at me, the harder I clutched my bag which had my lap-top inside.
As we passed a couple of buildings, the girls were getting more and more... sexier. Some of them were even really HOT! Those were definitely the 1G-5G girls. And there was nothing “prostitute” about them. They look just like those typical babes who you see at discs dancing seductively and flaunting their bodies. They knew how to dress up too. Nothing extravagant or over done. Man oh man, if my mind was any weaker, God knows what would have happened then.
Finally I told my driver I’ve seen enough and wanted to go home. He told me that most of the girls are inside the building and that a “madam” looks them after. LoL, sounds like one of those Jackie Collins novels. Much as I’d like to go inside one of these buildings, I remembered what one of my friends told me. He had done it with a hooker, and it seems in real life they do not scream out oohs and aahs. All they scream out is “Jaldi karo, jaldi karo”! LoLzzzz!!!!
As I drove past Sonargachi, I felt satisfied in a weird way. Finally I’ve seen what Sonargachi is about. Another point to strike out from my “List of things to do before I die”. )