A War for Identity – Let me Register (Part I)

A WAR FOR IDENTITY

A WAR FOR IDENTITY

        A bag weighing almost 13 kg in his right hand, a blue bag pack hanging on his back, and with an exuberant smile on his face Raj was back at what he called his second home. A new year, a new semester, new hopes and numerous exciting events were unfolding layer by layer inside Raj’s mind. He stood in front of his hostel, with the same smile, staring at a board which was dully lit with white lights making the letters on it read HOSTEL 8.

        The evening was cold but this start of a new semester brought a comforting warmth with it. He had realized, not as a part of his new year resolution but to be a better person, that the ups and downs of the previous year had taught him how to be a stable person and he would implement them. But the new year was no one but the same old devil with a new mask. It had some crazy plans sketched beforehand for Raj and with the first ray of sun, Raj would feel the heat increasing beyond his bearing.

        Paperwork was the thing Raj had hated the most other than his own birthday, but it was inevitable. Only paying fees weren’t enough here. One needed to go through a messed up process and bury oneself under humongous paperwork just to mark your existence and confirm it. Raj was about to get himself a real squashed up treat on the second day of a whole new and ‘bright’ year.

        The dried leaves crisped and crackled as he stepped upon them. Morning breeze blushed through the newly sprouted leaves. To avoid the crowd and long lines Raj had decided to be the first person to enter the bank as soon as its shutter went up. He was right. He was the first person standing in front of the closed shutter which still was 15 minutes away from rising. In the meantime, Raj basked himself under the mild sun.

         A man with long hair, split in half through the nose-line, unlocked the shutter sharp at 10. He had a dark complexion and was wearing a black full-bordered frame spectacles. He entered the bank and waved outside signaling to wait five more minutes. In the past 15 minutes, the alley was filled with almost a couple of dozen people. Apparently, Raj was not the only one with the unique idea. His idea was unique, just like everyone else.

        He noticed a girl with small but shiny almond eyes and straight hair, a guy with his face covered in freckles hiding under his trimmed beard, a girl with a chubby face and lively smile standing among the crowd waiting anxiously to get over the first step of registration.

        After another signal from the guy with half-split hair, the crowd rushed towards the door like a flock of pigeons crowding on a hand full of grains. The war for identity had begun. The very first step in the registration procedure required to fill in two forms with almost similar details and one small change, the amount. One form was to confirm the semester fee- 12350/- and the other one for mess charges-13500/-.

        Raj, although being the first, stuffed in the crowd succeeded to acquire both the forms and come out of it safely. He sighed a relief as he thought himself to be one of the lucky people to get hold of the forms during the early hours as they were usually the leftovers from the previous day and new forms would take time to arrive.

      Without wasting one more second Raj started filling up the form in the most traditional manner – horizontally. For the myth was this way it takes comparatively less time to fill in the complete form. Raj was third in the row to submit the forms and confirm the payment. Before him was the guy wearing a black sports jacket and spiked hair and the luckiest guy standing first in the long-misshaped line was a boy with wide face with little pimples on it.

         A couple of moments later a pregnant woman took a seat across the table. She had a long face, dark brown eyes with its borders sketched with a black mascara, and a lipstick with a slightly darker shade of pink masked on her curvy lips.

        Her periodic sighs made Raj believe that this was not a pleasant morning for her. Despite her maybe-bad mood, she was working like a younger sister of a supercomputer. Ten minutes later Raj, with his blurred thoughts, was facing the woman. The woman, without looking away from the computer screen, raised her palm and gestured to hand over the receipts. He did the same.

          The moment when Raj heard the tapping of keys everything and everyone else in that room, except the tapping, went mute. With every digit that was entered his heartbeats raised twice the previous rate. He could hear his heavy breath and the big lump of saliva which he gulped out of nervousness. His physical condition was almost similar to one’s condition before a physics viva. In this technological and crowded era, where to be the first one could kill the other, a slight mistake or misplacement would increase the chances of been thrown out of the war by thousand folds. And everyone, except the pregnant lady, was haunted by this thought.

        A few taps later the woman confirmed one payment and handed over the student-copy of the receipt to Raj. He received it like a medal of victory. He was just one step away to get out of this war-zone and one step closer to enter the next zone. His nervousness faded away and with a smile as wide as a crescent moon he waited to receive the second confirmation receipt. His eyes reflected brightly. He looked back towards the long misshaped line behind him and with a smirk whispered,

‘Ha, Losers’

        While Raj was busy pre-celebrating his victory with his dramatic mischief the woman was done with the second receipt. She handed over the original copy and said in a robotic manner,

‘We haven’t received your semester payment. It’s not showing here in the system. Please check with the bank from where this payment was initiated. N  E  X  T’

        Raj was dumbfounded. The woman’s words hit him like a meteor hitting a small planet. Just a few seconds ago he was one step away from getting out of here. Now he realized he was thrown miles away from where he had to come all the way walking to the same place and start over again.

       He looked back at the line with saddened eyes and jealous heart. His pride had backfired upon him. He could hear hollow echoes drumming into his head,

‘Who’s the loser now?.. ’, the whispers became more terrifying

‘Y O U A R E T H E L O S E R….’, Raj grabbed the receipts from the woman’s hand and clasped them tightly. And like a failed warrior he walked out of the room. Not for a single second did he dare to look around into the eyes of the people standing back of the line, not even once did he ask the woman to recheck. He accepted the fact that he had failed halfway through his mission.

        As he stepped out of the room the mild heat now pierced like sharp needles into his body. He had no other option but to walk all those miles and come back. He felt his feet buried three feet more under the heap of paperwork. With an exasperation blow, he picked up his phone and called his father.

        His father received the call almost at the last ring. Raj’s anxiety had reached at the highest possible point until then. Words sputtered out of his mouth like flood water escaping after busting a dam.

‘They say they haven’t received the semester payment. How is it possible? Didn’t the bank initiate the transaction? What should I do?’, his lips trembled as he spoke.

‘Calm down Raj. What’s wrong? Tell me. Calmly’, replied his father.

‘The woman here says that their is no information regarding my semester fee payment. I think they didn’t receive it. I think the bank from which we paid did not initiate the payment at all. You have to go and check right now!’

‘Ok Ok. Don’t worry. I’ll go and sort this out. I’ll call you’

              Raj took a deep breath and thought what he can do in the meantime.

        The next step, independent of the bank-war-zone, was to fight in the colored-receipts-zone. This was the zone where every student, regardless of confirming the mess payment, had to double confirm it and acquire three different receipts. To make things a little interesting administration had introduced three different color receipts which apparently made the whole scenario astonishingly colorful as a rainbow.

       Raj marched towards the colored-receipt-zone with a pale face where another adventure was waiting anxiously for him.
Standing in long queues had become an essential part of daily routine in every Indian’s life after the November currency apocalypse.
Raj had already entered the colored-receipts-zone and just when he was about to enter into the office his phone rang.

‘Yes dad’, he answered.

             What he heard next shook the ground beneath his feet and he felt himself drowning two more feet into the heap of paperwork.

‘I checked with the bank here. They say payment has been initiated and your bank has already received the payment. There’s definitely something wrong with the bank or that woman’, replied his father.

        Raj felt like standing on a tiny piece of land surrounded by deep waters. He had to rush to the bank and sort the fees problem but he also was the next person to enter the office and double confirm the mess payment. Time, for the first time, ran like a horse in a race. He could hear the tick-tick of the watch, scribbling of the tip of a pen over the colored forms and chatter of the crowd. He had the decision to make and he had to make it right now. But just then……..

T O   B E   C O N T I N U E D . . . .

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A Hundred Deaths

hundred-deaths

A Hundred Deaths – Brainwork

I’ve been dying,
a hundred deaths.
Everyday,
in a hundred different ways.

There’s no savior,
for me to protect.
You were the one,
before you turned into a foe.

Now, with your every breath,
My Life drains away.
And until the last bit of it to drain,
I will stand firm,
And won’t refrain.

Life – a circle.
You – the starting point.
Ah! it began with you.
And, Oh! it ends with you.

It’s a vicious circle,
with memories in its pile.
And it’s now that I realized,
Memories are vile.

But it’s okay,
Don’t you regret
At least
I am dying a hundred deaths.
You haven’t even started living yet.

#100
#deaths
#hp

Superhumans and Developments

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It was a normal night before everything was going to change. The bushes were not trimmed, lawn wasn’t mowed. Everything was normal. Totally normal. But then, the next day’s rising sun brought a bunch of changes along. Now everything wasn’t normal. It was changed. No I wasn’t dreaming, and I am damn sure of that.

So, our campus is huge and demands maintenance from time to time (or at least on special occasions). And the authorities stand up for their responsibilities so well that superhuman powers arise inside them just overnight. While rendition of their decorative work is appreciable (no doubt there) it opens up a funny (but real) portal for discussion/commentary.

Most of the times, I personally have observed, that on the visit of some unknown so-called VIP personality, a dedication-for-work feeling and this-must-be-done-in-these-much-hours commitment arises in the government related higher authorities and also in the people who work under them.

Conversation:

Higher authority person (A) to his work force (B-Z):

A: We need to construct a 10kms road in four hours

B-Z: (with a pan in his mouth) ho jaega sir! (it will be done)

A: We need to plant trees on the sideways so that our minister can feel the calmness by looking at them (while travelling in his AC car?)

B-Z: (a pan in his mouth) ho jaega sir! Truck bhar ped mangvata hu! (consider it done, I will call in a truck full of trees)

A: We need to tell the residents they cannot walk (in their own area) while minister is visiting them, for ‘security reasons’.

B-Z: (spitting the pan) hanji! Ye to sir dekhiye bahut jaruri hai.. pata chala ghumte ghumte ekkhad londe ne goli mar di minister saab ko to! Abhi e-mail bhijwata hu sir.. ghumna firna band do din k liye..

(NOTE: Guys please! He is just a minister! And he is VIP! Don’t hurt him. Let him enjoy his stay in your area even if it’s on the cost of your freedom. Please don’t get out of your rooms or else they will arrest you considering an attacker or maybe terrorist! After all your overgrown beard, unwashed hair, and always sleepy eyes determine your…. You know what I mean, eh!)

Coming back to the point! Ok what was the point?

Yeah! Decoration of roads, plantation and even if it comes to build a 50 storey building, it is important!

WHY?

…………..     Because planting trees is a good act! And it isn’t for the VIP, obviously.

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Look at this picture. It’s the proof that planting trees is the most generous and essential act. 🙂

So what there are just two, and are looking like they arose out of nowhere, and nearly resemble the meeting of two lost brothers (yep that movie!). They still look beautiful and, shut up, they are trees. Respect.

Yeah I know there was nothing but overgrown grass in this square just the night before. But, come on who cares! We got two goddamn palm (?) trees right in the center of our hostels. And there’s one more somewhere, maybe two.

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And the trees have been planted for a special occasion. Because the authorities, too, know that for (un)bearded, unhygienic students grass is enough for their survival. 😐

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Because everyone should be on one level

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This is my turn to prove my earlier statement that overgrown beard and hair is a big NO for governmental authorities. I mean these guys don’t even like a bush spreading its branches in a way that makes it look like an attacker, I mean, ugly. Oops.

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Just look at the picture guys. Do I need say more? The dedication that was put in to trim and add splendid beauty to campus is just appreciable. (BTW the guy who was trimming the bushes had an overgrown beard and was thrown out from his job when the higher-higher authorities caught his live image from the satellite which is sent out in space especially for the purpose of catching the people who don’t follow by the rules of Big Brother) They are watching you too!! (Yep just exactly like that novel!)

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Oh! This stripes! Brings memories..

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These stripes bring all those memories from childhood, don’t they? Walking with parents, holding their hand, and then on the zebra-crossing thinking that we are safe on these black and white stripes. But we were just children then and weren’t aware that for bikers and car drivers here the stripes are like a finish-line and instead of decreasing the pace they do the exact opposite.

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Well I guess just to avoid this issue they have painted only the sideways and that too only till what looks in the picture. Nowhere else these stripes can be found except the area in the picture. Peace.

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No, this isn’t because we will have a visitor, obviously. Nope. Absolutely not. It’s been done because Winter is Coming.

Next segment is pretty cool. Because we have customized our Winterfell (Yep that’s what I call it. And you very well know why!)

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The only person who was the happiest was the guard whose table and chair you can see in one of the picture. When asked why he was so happy he said, “Finally my loneliness has come to an end”

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“I used to sit in this chair staring at the blank walls all the time but now with the blessings of minister I have so many pictures to share my time with. Now I don’t feel lonely”

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“Also I like these touch screen things very much. Can you teach me how to turn on the computer and use this thing?”

I said, “Uncle, there are seven floors in this library. Of which six floors has this thing and half of them don’t work! Most of the time I found this damn thing locked and we don’t know the password. Even the hint to unlock this thing is useless”

He looked at me for some time, disappointed. Then I said, “I can teach you how to operate my phone. It is touch screen too”

The Globe:

I don’t know what the purpose of putting this globe here is, but it feels nice. The moment you enter Winterfell you will see this globe standing upright, with absolutely no idea what it is proud of. I see a ray of hope when I look at it. And for people like me who dream of travelling to foreign countries and then have a look at bank balance, which is merely few bucks, this egoistic light shining globe is the last hope.

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Now comes the most important and final part of this article:

Introducing the Official MAP!

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Inspired from the local map boards around Chandigarh this map gives you the detailed information about the campus. And I must say that this is the most important step taken by the authority. Because we have a huge campus spread on 125 acres of land. And anyone could easily get lost in such a big place, of course!

I myself have lost my ways 4-5 times and I had to spend the night walking on the empty roads which by the way felt haunted because of the overgrown trees everywhere. But now all the unwanted trees are gone and there’s always this map to guide.

Go and check it out people it’s really cool and don’t forget to take a selfie with map because that’s what we do! Upload your selfies with the hashtag “#mysaviormap” and stand a chance to win…. I don’t know this is not a contest and I just have few bucks left for godsake!

——–

Being said that there might be some things that I have missed. If you can spot them out do share.

I think I should have put the ‘before’ photos too. That would have made things much clearer. But not my fault guys, the only way we come to know someone ‘important’ is visiting is when we look at the startling development that happens overnight. Peace.

AND NOW THE NOTICE AND REQUEST:

This request is of utter importance:

This is my humble request to every student that at least on the ‘show-day’ take a nice long bath, wear washed clothes, comb your hair (trim them if necessary), spray deo on your body because I am pretty sure that our VIP won’t like to seat in the vicinity of un-clean and unhygienic people. And this may get us a flow of money from government. Because everything done here is done for a purpose! Peace.

 

On a serious Note:

The purpose of writing this article is not to attack on the system or the authorities but to ask the question “Why?”

Why the so-called developments, decorations and show-off things are put in motion only when a VIP member, minister or any government authority is to visit? And, why not on regular basis?

And the answer to this is:

= ‘bhai dekho ab….. aisa hi hai.. India me aisa hi hota hai’

If anyone feels hurt after reading this post, please go and click a selfie with the map you will definitely feel good. And don’t forget to upload it with #mysaviormap.

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Jai Hind 😛

Over n out comrades!

 

 

One Dominating Emotion

happy and sad faces

One Dominant Emotion

The most annoying and never ending problem for every writer is thinking about what to write next. There are lots of feelings, lots of emotions, lots of things going on inside the mind yet there is no center point around which every word will be revolving. And the idea of what to say or what I want to put in words becomes just difficult to explain.

Feelings and emotions. The most complex forms that webs us, the human beings, sometimes like a tangled rope, sometimes like an untangled one. A subtle mixture of every emotion is a recipe for a perfectly happy life or, we can say, for a perfectly balanced life. But, who’s life is perfect? No ones. Every day is a different one; every hour brings a new mystery with it. We don’t even know what has the next minute brought for us on its plate. Time is a mystery.

How we react, how we behave, what we feel depends on how we are being treated. There maybe lots of quotes on the internet, in the novels, inside your mind too, about how the only thing that should matter to you is your happiness. Doesn’t matter how people treat you or if they value your presence in their lives, you should do what you like and keep yourselves happy. But think realistically. Is this what actually happens? Even if you try to? No. Truth is miles away from those quotes. No matter how much you try to mask your feelings that hurt, no matter how much you try to convert the truth into a mystery, for everyone but you, by putting a smile on that face, inside you there’s a silence, not because you don’t feel like talking but because the actions or words of others have left you blank.

This is the truth. It may hurt or it may sound weird. But this is THE truth. Like the time, people, too, are a mystery. Each person with a different story, with a different background, with a silence inside them, too, which was because of someone else. Like a writers’ thoughts which are spread like thousand marbles on a floor and to which he can’t put into words yet somehow he finds a connection. The people you are surrounded by are the same. Everyone is different yet there is something that makes them same as you. At some point or other in their life, too, they were hurt and probably that is the reason why they have changed or treat you the way that hurts you. It’s like they have created an imaginary shell that covers their life and anyone who they think is on the verge to enter the shell they push them back, so hard that no one will give it a second chance to try again.

Despite being kicked numerous times there exist some people who just keep trying to convince the other person that they along with their partner will take care of that shell. These people are like an ant that struggles to climb a wall but falls down every time. Still it doesn’t give up until it has reached it’s destined place. Getting hurt has become the part of their life. It is the single most dominant emotion ruling their life every day. Each day is a mystery. One happy, other sad, next disappointing. Yet they fight, against their emotions. They struggle to convert that sad emotion into a happy one. They constantly try to unravel the mystery of why they are being treated the way they don’t deserve. They try, tenderly, to unmask the fake smile and know the tearful mystery behind it. They try, desperately, to love the other person on the cost of losing their selves. Still, they try, unlike the other ones who push.

These people, maybe they are like those marbles spread on the floor, the center point that connects us to them are the emotions that burst inside us after their silence creates its twin inside us. The only thing you can do is love them like the sky loves clouds, like the birds love songs, love them until they love you back.

#Brainwork@Facebook