Father Returning Home By Dilip Chitre | Class 12th Maharashtra Board

My Father Returning Home


  1. What are some common sacrifices that Indian parents make for the sake of their children’s education and future?
  2. How does the expectation of providing financial support to parents affect the lives of Indian children, especially when they face their own financial pressures?
  3. In what ways can the generation gap between Indian parents and their children contribute to misunderstandings and a lack of appreciation for parental sacrifices?
  4. What role do cultural norms and traditions play in shaping the relationship between Indian parents and their adult children, particularly in terms of caregiving and respect?
  5. How can Indian families foster better communication and understanding between generations to bridge the gap and reduce feelings of neglect or unappreciation?
  6. What are some possible reasons why Indian children might not fully grasp the extent of their parents’ hardships, and how can awareness be raised?
  7. What responsibilities do Indian parents have toward their children, and what responsibilities do adult children have toward their parents, especially in later years?
  8. What societal or economic factors contribute to the challenges faced by Indian parents and children in maintaining close relationships and providing mutual support?
  9. How can Indian parents and children work together to ensure that the sacrifices made for the family’s well-being are acknowledged and reciprocated with care and respect?
  10. What are some examples of initiatives or programs that aim to address the hardships faced by Indian parents and promote intergenerational understanding and support?

Read and Think on the Following

In Islam, the role of parents and the responsibilities of children towards their elderly parents are highly emphasized. Here are some teachings of Islam on this matter:

1. Respect and Obedience: Islam teaches that children should show the utmost respect and obedience to their parents, regardless of their age. This respect includes speaking to them kindly and addressing them with honorific titles like “mother” and “father.”

2. Providing for Parents: One of the primary responsibilities of children, especially adult children, is to provide for the material and emotional needs of their elderly parents. This includes financial support, shelter, food, and medical care, if necessary.

3. Kindness and Compassion: Islam places a strong emphasis on showing kindness, compassion, and patience towards elderly parents. Taking care of their physical and emotional well-being is considered a virtuous act.

4. Du’a (Prayers) for Parents: Islam encourages children to pray for their parents’ well-being and seek Allah’s blessings and forgiveness for them. It is believed that such prayers are a means of earning reward and forgiveness for the children as well.

5. Spending Time with Parents: Spending quality time with elderly parents is considered a noble act in Islam. Engaging in conversations, listening to their advice, and being present in their lives is highly rewarded.

6. Maintaining Ties: Islam stresses the importance of maintaining strong family ties, especially with parents. Cutting off ties with one’s parents, unless there is a valid and justifiable reason, is strongly discouraged.

7. Patience and Perseverance: Taking care of elderly parents can be challenging, especially if they have health issues. Islam teaches children to be patient and persevere in fulfilling their duties towards their parents.

8. Inheritance Rights: Islam has specific guidelines regarding the distribution of inheritance, ensuring that parents receive their fair share. Adult children are obligated to follow these guidelines to provide for their parents.

9. Gratitude: Expressing gratitude to parents for their care and upbringing is considered essential. The Quran mentions the importance of being thankful to one’s parents.

10. Charity and Good Deeds on Behalf of Parents: Children are encouraged to perform acts of charity and good deeds on behalf of their deceased parents. This includes giving to the poor, helping those in need, and participating in acts of kindness in their parents’ names.

Text Of the Poem: My Father Returning Home By Dilip Chitre

My father travels on the late evening train

Standing among silent commuters in the yellow light

Suburbs slide past his unseeing eyes

His shirt and pants are soggy and his black raincoat

Stained with mud and his bag stuffed with books

Is falling apart. His eyes dimmed by age

Fade homeward through the humid monsoon night.

Now I can see him getting off the train

Like a word dropped from a long sentence.

He hurries across the length of the grey platform,

Crosses the railway line, enters the lane,

His chappals are sticky with mud, but he hurries onward.

Home again, I see him drinking weak tea,

Eating a stale chapati, reading a book.

He goes into the toilet to contemplate

Man’s estrangement from a man-made world.

Coming out he trembles at the sink,

The cold water running over his brown hands,

A few droplets cling to the greying hair on his wrists.

His sullen children have often refused to share

Jokes and secrets with him.

He will now go to sleep

Listening to the static on the radio, dreaming

Of his ancestors and grandchildren, thinking

Of nomads entering a subcontinent through a narrow pass.

Central Idea of the Poem

The central idea of the poem is kind of a portrayal of the speaker’s father, a weary commuter who undertakes a daily routine. The poem captures a snapshot of his life and thoughts, emphasizing the mundane aspects of his existence and the sense of detachment he feels from the world around him. It reflects on his journey, both physical and metaphorical, as he navigates the challenges of daily life and contemplates his place in a changing world. The poem conveys a sense of resignation and isolation that the father experiences, even as he dreams of a broader historical and familial context.

Assignment and Project work

  1. Essay Assignment:
    • “Write an essay on the role of a father in a child’s life. Discuss the responsibilities a child has towards their father and how a strong father-child relationship can impact a child’s development.”
  2. Reflective Writing:
    • “Reflect on a specific memory or moment with your mother that had a significant impact on you. Describe the experience and explain what it taught you about the responsibilities you have towards your mother.”
  3. Comparative Analysis:
    • “Compare and contrast the roles and responsibilities of fathers and mothers in a family. How do they complement each other, and what unique qualities do each bring to parenting?”
  4. Personal Experience Narrative:
    • “Share a personal story about a time when you realized the importance of showing gratitude and appreciation towards your parents. How did this experience change your perspective on your responsibilities towards them?”
  5. Cultural Perspective:
    • “Examine how cultural norms and traditions influence the roles and responsibilities of children towards their parents. Discuss any specific customs or rituals related to honoring parents in your culture.”
  6. Interview Assignment:
    • “Interview a parent or grandparent about their experiences and challenges in raising children. Explore their views on the responsibilities children should have towards their parents and how these have evolved over time.”
  7. Creative Writing:
    • “Write a short story or poem that illustrates the love and responsibilities shared between a child and their mother or father. Use descriptive language to convey the emotions involved.”
  8. Historical Perspective:
    • “Research and write about how the roles and responsibilities of children towards their parents have evolved throughout history. Discuss any societal changes that have influenced these dynamics.”
  9. Ethical Dilemma Essay:
    • “Present an ethical dilemma related to parental responsibilities. Analyze the choices children might face when balancing their responsibilities towards parents with other obligations or desires.”
  10. Future Planning:
    • “Imagine yourself as a parent one day. Write a letter to your future children explaining the responsibilities you hope they will have towards you as their parent. Justify your expectations.”

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