A recent edition of "The Week" carried an article about MBAs.It said that a 1993 IIM passout commanded an average annual salary of 50 lakhs in 2003.
My sister read this article at her college Library.She gasped , quickly got up from the desk , ran out of the Library , took out her cellphone and dialled mom's number with trembling fingers. "Ma , Munnu is going to get a minimum of 50 lakhs per year in 2016.".The details of the sensational week article were duly passed on to ma.Ma dropped the plate carrying the potatoes she was peeling , dropped the kitchen knife she was peeling the potatoes with and stagerred to the nearest chair.After downing a bottle of Bisleri , or maybe it was Aquafina , she called Dad at the hospital.My dad dropped the scissors in the tummy of the guy he was operating on , did a little jig to the tune of "Dil le gyi" by Jassi , and yelled "my son will be rich" so loudly that the window glasses of buildings within a radius of 4.23 kilometers of the hospital cracked.
I hope that was exciting enough.Now picture the exact opposite of this.It was me who read the article .Later , when I was talking to mom on the phone , I remarked about the sultan-of-brunei-sque sum of 50 lakhs to mom .I am not sure if mom even heard it , because she immediately proceeded to ask about the stuff I had in the evening snacks.I paused , and then said sandwiches.Then she warned me against skipping dinner.This is what really happenned.
My family is a "small dreams" family.And this has been inherited by me.My idea of a perfect day at the age of 50 is taking out my cute little wife and two cute-er and little-er kids to a comedy movie , laugh a lot with them , throw popcorn at people , sing loudly with the songs in the movie , then go to a little cosy restaurent for dinner , spill a lot of food , laugh a lot , drop things in each other's glasses when they aint looking , and then sneak home without paying the bill.I do not know if I will get that "potato-dropping-window -glass-shattering" salary , and to be as honest as a lie detector machine , I do not care.
Being in an IIM assures me that I will attain a minimum standard of financial status , that I would not need to sell my wife's "mangalsootra" and my daughter's barbie collection to buy dinner.So though I have not "earned" a cent in my life yet , though I did steal a pencilbox in class fourth , if we can call that "earning" something , money is no more a motive in my life.I am intent on loving what I do .And money will come by as a by product as fleas come by with a stray dog.
All I want is a nice and simple life.Where nobody cries much , and even if they do , there are always people to offer a nice smelling handkerchief.And it is this simplicity and innocence which the world seems to be losing.Looks like a little dream of an innocent smile is becoming too much to ask for.
A 13 year old girl was raped yesterday in the Salt Lake area of Calcutta.Raped before her parents ,by four men.She was the daughter of a domestic help.She went to school , class VIII.Maybe she would have had dinner a few hours before being raped.Maybe her mother would have prepared her favorite dish as dinner.She would have enjoyed eating it , then maybe she would have studied a little.Studied some english lesson maybe.Then her mother would have finished the household chores and mother and daughter would have chatted.Chatted about her classes at school that day , imitating with glee the strange pronunciation of her south indian Maths teacher , expressing her difficulty with Physics to her illiterate mother , maybe asking her mother to get a new pair of socks the next day.A normal girl , maybe like my sister would have been at 13.Then she would have slept.
And at 4 in the morning , four men drag her out of bed , push her to the floor , and rape her brutally as her gagged and tied mother and father watch helplessly.Watch their little girl undergo something she is too young to understand.They watch all the moments , the moment their daughter took her first step , the moment she stepped into her school for the first time , the moment she made her first "chappati" , the moment she used her pocket money to buy flowers on her mother's birthday , they watch all these moments heartlessly trampled by four men.
Is it foolish to dream and hope in such a world ? I say this to myself and my friends , but is life really beautiful ? All I want is a life bathed in a little bit of sunshine , but is the darkness too much ?