Monday, May 25, 2009

Court Martial

Last evening was wonderful. Perfect weather. Driving on the roads lined with green trees. Less traffic and the weather thought of being extra gracious on us by being actually cool in this hot month of May. It was cloudy and windy that we all loved. To top it all, I saw a play in the amphitheatre at India Habitat Centre. The play was titled 'Court Martial', written by Swadesh Deepak, directed by Arvind Gaur.

The play started with a tight grip on the subject. The actors were well prepared and not even once it was felt that they were civilians and nowhere related to the Armed Forces. The play is about the trial of an orderly Ramchandra who is accused of killing an officer and attempt to kill another one. What followed was an intense court room drama involving some poignant, humorous and touchy moments. One comes to know that even the Army is not spared from the clutches of caste barriers.

How an officer stoops to a low level where he never to fails to insult his soldier? Simply because he is not from a 'high' caste and also he managed to beat the officer in the 5000 m race. While interrogation, it was revealed that there are much larger issues at stake than just the murder. There is a question on the mere existence of humanity in general. Yes, what the culprit did was punishable, but its the society which is responsible for driving such ghastly acts. The culprit did come out as winner, at the same time even the victim was not spared. The only question raised every time was : Why did Ramchandra had to kill the officer? What was his motive? All and all a wonderfully done play, packaged equally well. No loose ends left.

My love for watching plays goes back to when I was in Class XII almost 15 years back. That was the first time I saw a play in Tata theatre in Mumbai. It was based on Agatha Chrsitie's novel - 'Tere Pyaar Mein'. Till then I had never known that watching plays can be so much fun. After that I did watch a couple of plays but they were not as interesting as I had expected. So when I got a chance to watch 'Court Martial', I could not resist. Also the fact that it was based on Armed Forces (another love of mine)...

A very well executed play.. An evening worth spent.. Justified more than an hour of travel.. If you ever get a chance, dont miss it. Go, watch it for some thrilling performances and soul-stirring thinking..

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Drive anywhere Park everywhere

For the past few days, we are experiencing problems with our parking space in the society. Ours is an open parking with the parking number clearly mentioned. Infact every parking area has a number allotted and one can easily read them. Everytime we take out our car, we find that someone else has parked their car happily in our parking space. It becomes difficult to track the person who has parked his car. Its a huge society and obviously there are visitors as well. The guard at the gate does asks the person where he is going to but still its a nuisance in its own. What we started doing was, park our car right behind that person's car just to let them know that they cannot park their cars at their own whims and fancies.. If they are a visitor in the society they are supposed to park at the appropriate place. At the end, all we heard was a 'Sorry' without any guilt. Some of them even had the courage to commit the same mistake again. We did not like troubling them to find the owner but it was required to let them know the basic ethics of visiting another society. And all these people claim to be respectable.

So couple of days back, like always, we took out our car. When I came back late in the evening, I found that someone has happily parked his car and also in the fashion that not only our parking was blocked, the parking next to ours was also blocked. It was around 7 in the evening. I asked the driver to wait for a few minutes so that I can find out about the owner of the car. I tried to enquire for almost 30 minutes but could not. That visitor told at the gate, that he was visiting the society office. Obviously it was a lie.. We parked our car right behind his. I am not comfortable driving but still I thought I will manage if the person comes and asks me to remove my car.

After two hours two people literally banged on our front door twice. I found two 'gentlemen' standing, probably in early sixties. They started talking at a very high pitch. They told me to remove the car so that they can take out their car. I asked them if they could see where they have parked the car. I was not in a very good mood after searching for the owner sometime back. All the person had to say was 'Sorry'. Both of them introduced themselves as a Colonel and a Brigadier respectively. Moreover the resident of the society claimed that he was his guest and he visits him very often. They play a game or two and spend sometime together. Fine. But does that give him a right to park his car anywhere? I clearly told him that it was unethical on his part to give a wrong address at the gate and also park in someone else' parking.. All he could claim was I am a retired Army officer and a senior citizen. I do respect people of all age groups and whatever profession they belong to. But he was trying to make a point that since he was a retired officer and a senior citizen, it was ok.. I was #$#@%^&^. I told him that I face this problem everyday where I have to struggle to park my own car.

The matter was sorted out after a few minutes when I told him clearly that he will have to help with parking my car since I did not have any driver. His ego was hurt. I could make out clearly that he was not very happy that he had to wait and look for the owner (the same way I did). I was thinking at the end of the day, is it our fault that our parking is an open one and yeah a convenient one. Does that mean anyone can park their car? Moreover, if you are a retired officer and a senior citizen, do you have the right to talk in a rude manner and say whatever you feel like. I always hold Army officers at a high pedestal. I have very high regards for them (quite evident from my blog).. I do expect some decency.. But now it seems I am asking for too much!!!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Working Saturday

Thanks to the elections in this part of the country on 7th May, where the company had to declare a forced holiday, I am working today. Ever since we came to know that we will be working on Saturday, my mind is switched off. I agree that its an additional holiday but yes, we can make up with the lost time. Why do we have to work on Saturday - the day when I am supposed to be relaxing at home, watching TV, surfing net, reading a book, sipping a cool drink and sleeping... But the fact is that I am sitting in office, working. The day was made a compulsory working day for everyone. So while I am slogging here, my manager has comfortably decided not to come.. The bliss of being a manager and having the option of not working!!

I remember how I worked on every Saturday for almost 3-4 months some 4-1/2 years back, without taking any comp-offs.. Those days I used to be alone sitting in the whole office working. Just because I was the only one who knew about that process and it was a critical one with high revenues at stake.. But today, why are we sitting in office. We could have been given an extra day off and yes, we would have made up for the lost time by working extra hours on the rest of the weekdays (in any case we do)...

I even confirmed if we can work on 7th and take Saturday off. My point was we dont need the whole day to vote.. But it was made clear that we cannot come to office on 7th.. So if we dont work on Saturday, the day would be marked as leave. And obviously we do not want to lose a day's leave just like that, considering that every day of leave counts here.. So just to make myself happy on this Saturday, I went downstairs and had an ice-cream.. I am feeling better and looking at the clock every now and then.. waiting for the day to end...