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					                                         Promotion
                                           (Dr H N Dutta)
                                         hndutta@gmail.com

It was summer of 2003 when I received a call on my cell phone from a lady, she introduced
herself as Somya who had done her Post graduation in English literature, she had an excellent
career and was looking for a job in my department (I was leading that department). She was
highly talkative and had a melodious, pleasing voice and I could not resist calling her for an
informal discussion in my Department, the next day.

Next day, I was expecting her to come around 1100 hrs, but she was in the Department at 1000
hrs itself. While entering in my room, she said, “May I come in Sir?”

I just recalled her sweet, pleasing voice in my memory and the natural reaction was, “Oh,
Somya! Please come in. Kindly be seated.”

“How could you recognize me?” while shaking hand, she asked.

“You possess the sweetest and the most melodious voice I had ever heard” was my natural
reaction

“Thanks a lot, this voice has been gifted by my mother, who was a great singer.”

“I must thank your mother for translating her great daughter’s voice into a melodious tone with
the most pleasing sound and on the top of that you have done your post graduation in English
literature.”

“That’s nothing, so many people study English literature”

“Yeah, they do study, but they really do not understand and come forward to apply. In fact, most
of the women in India get married and then they do nothing except giving service to their family
and kids. English becomes the last priority.”

“Yeah, that’s the social setup” she was little perturbed and continued to speak, “But, some are
different than the normal society”

“Yes, I can see one before me” I said.

She just smiled. “Well Prof Das, let me come to the point, I need to teach in your Department”.

 “Well I do not have any opening at the moment but looking at your enthusiasm, I can create a
temporary position, say for a period of six months or so and if you can contribute effectively may
be you become a permanent faculty member.”

“I really do not need a job just for the sake of money but I really need to be busy with my own
subject and to grow as a professional.”
I knew this is how each and every one says in the younger age and particularly among girls, they
show no inclination for money but they seriously need it. Hiding this in my mind I said, “Well
professionalism is extremely important and for a spirited professional like you, I know business
is extremely important.”

“Sir, I hope I am not asking too much?”

In my mindset I am impressed with the magnetic field and the aura that she has around her,
which has just locked my attention but I am only pretending to be ideally ignorant and as a
natural consequence I said, “Oh not at all, in fact, I needed someone really keen to work”, I
really do not want to miss this opportunity and continued my sentence, “Well when are you
planning to join?”

“I can join even from today” was the prompt reply.

This added another fact in my mind that she is really needy but I just asked, “Are you married?”

“Yes, I am married and my husband is a marketing executive. But sitting at home, I don’t want
to grow as a housewife rather as a professional or a career woman. I live in this city with my
parents, while my in-laws live in a nearby city.

“In that case, let us not waste time and I give you an appointment letter right now.” I pulled my
PC and typed her appointment letter to work in my project.

She was extremely happy to have a joining letter in her hands and submitted her joining report
immediately. I could see the sense of great gratitude on her beautiful eyes and when she handed
over the joining report, I said, “Welcome to our group and I am happy that you are my
associate.”

“It is my pleasure to be part of your great group and to be part of your team. In fact, it was a
dream for me to work with you as I had heard your name from so many people, each one
praising you.”

I laughed and said, “I am not as great as you think or people think about me, I am a simple
human being. When people praise me, they are great, their perception is positive for a person
who has millions of bad qualities.”

“No Sir, it’s your humbleness to give credit to others” and she even said, “Great people are
always simple and do not take any credit for themselves and let me tell you Sir, I have been to
many other institutes in search of my job, but nobody gave me the kind of respect and response
you have given.”

“Life is a two-way traffic, I had a position and I needed someone to be with me, so the credit
goes to your destiny that pulled you here and you are so great that you have joined immediately.
Let me introduce you to each and every person and explain you what all has to be done.” ]
I introduced her to each and everyone in my group; I could see the sense of great satisfaction of
her face and noticed that she is absolutely confident and extremely happy.

She left in the evening and I offered her lunch in my room. During the whole day, I could realize
that she is positively perturbed on her marital front and needed money for her survival. This
created a hole in my heart and I assured full help to establish and grow. In the meanwhile, our
office administrative officer pointed out administrative problems in her appointment and was
keen to cancel it, as even for such appointments, an internal circulation is important.

At about 0930 PM she called me on my mobile phone, “Good evening Sir.”

“Hi, good evening, what a surprise?”

“Please don’t mind, I couldn’t resist to really thank you once again.”

“Somya, there is no need to be formal, I am in that age group, where I can read volumes without
being uttered. I have read problems in your eyes, in your thoughts and let me tell you, I will help
you to establish yourself in this jungle of 6 billions of people. After all, in this overcrowded
jungle, I could find only one Somya and for that matter, I am grateful to you.”

“Thank you very much. Sir if you’ll permit me, can I say something to you?”

“Of course, after 9 AM to 5 PM, I am not a boss, I have a personal life and you are right now, a
part of that.”

“Sir, I have seen loneliness in your eyes, I have some intuition to read others.”

“You are hundred percent correct. Are you only reading or you provide some solutions too?”

She simply laughed and I continued to say, “In fact, my family stays far off from this place.
Whole day, I am surrounded by all those who seek something or the other from me but at night
no one talks to me, no one cares for me. People never think that a head of the department also
needs something; he is also a human being. Somya, I am again grateful to you, at least you have
cared for me.”

“This is nothing compared to what you have done to me.” She said with an emotional feeling.

“No Somya, what I have done is my duty but what you are doing in not part of your duty, you
are giving me a God gift-Somya, a divine ….”

She had cut my sentence and said, “No Sir, I am only a human being. God and Goddesses do not
need a job, they are not pinched by the society and their emotions are not hurt by their own
people.”

She went on saying many things and our conversation lasted for about an hour. She was worried
about the administrative problems in her appointment letter and I assured that some people are
always very fussy but she has to be careful from such rumors or such office gossip as I knew that
many of the lady staff members would not be happy to see her working in my group. After all in
India, we are too many to be accommodated in any system.

Whole night I remained perturbed, Somya became part of my soul, my breaths and for the first
time in my life, someone had touched my inner heart. I slept late and it was about 7 AM, when
my phone beeped, “Hello” I said.

“Good morning, this is Somya”

I was still in my sleep, “Oh, good morning, I couldn’t sleep whole night, I remembered Somya.”

She laughed, “Why should I disturb your night?”

“You are still immature, you haven’t experienced the emotional hunger, the psychological need
of a man living in a huge crowd and yet being alone.”

‘Please believe me, if I would have been immature, I would have never given this call. I am also
lonely in many aspects of my life and if you have not been able to sleep well, I too had disturbed
night and it is these disturbances which forced me to say you good morning. By the way, what
time the office starts?’

“It is 9 AM.”

“I’ll be there dot at 9 AM.”

The day was full of enthusiasm in my mind but whole day I was sleepy. With Somya’s entry in
the department, it looked as if she has been part and parcel of our department since ages; she
started the whole program of the project.

Every day, she would call me three to four times and would talk to me at length and I learnt that
she has many problems with her in-laws. In India, the marriage is not between just two young
persons, it is the marriage between two families, wherein the girl is often a victim of her mother-
in-law and associates. She also had also been a victim of utter social neglect; no one cared for
her personal health. I realized she was anemic. Under such a situation, she became an objective
of my life, wherein I realized that her economic stability is absolutely essential for her social
security and stability and I have to pay full attention on her health. For this, I decided to bring
different healthy juices and food stuff so that she develops strength and gets nourishment, she
had never received.

Once while narrating her certain sequences of life, her tears rolled out of her eyes and seeing this
I said, “Well Somya, you don’t have to say anything, your tears have already told me a volume
of pain and I vow to wipeout these tears for ever. In fact, I am in that age group where you do not
have to say, I understand things without being uttered, said, narrated or told.”

These sentences were creating a hole in her heart and certainly she started seeing me as the best
savior, a protector and someone who had enough money to keep her happy. Moreover, in the
dealings I realized that she is also an innocent girl, who has never been loved by a right person
and one day during the conversation she said,” Sir, the way you care for me, I have started loving
you.”

“I too love U Somya and now that you have touched this chapter, let me tell you that due to your
behavior and nearness in my mindset, my 24 billion molecules love you in a unified way from
the coolest and the warmest part of my heart, mind and soul. I know there is a difference of 30
years between you and me, yet you have made me younger and the sense of loneliness that you
had read in my eyes has suddenly vanished. I have started loving this strange city, I know, my
lover lives here.”

She went on laughing and I went on saying so many things. With these sentences, we became
practically one and I started sharing various jokes with her and she would feel a sense of great
satisfaction and achievement in her life. I also saw that I do provide her various comforts, like
transport from her residence to office and back to her home, although it was against the rules.

The use of words like love, darling, sweetheart, beloved etc became part of daily conversation
inspiring both of us and one day during these conversations, I said, “I don’t like you, I love you.
Liking is only a mental acceptance and love is eternal. It’s bliss by God. Somya is a specific
creation by the God for me” and in reply to this she said, “You are also unique and the most
specific creation by nature. “I love you from the core of my heart. I have started seeing you as
the friend I never had in my life. The coziness of mindset, emotional fulfillment that you have
provided, none had provided me in my life.”

The nearness of Somya made me to ooze out each and everything for her and now I used to take
care of each and every requirement and I planned several trips to go out of the town so that the
loneliness brings us together.

With these trips, Somya was part of my heart and to grow her status in the society and to make
her elevated, I published her photographs in the news papers describing her as the most versatile
researcher cum teacher. She was so happy that in her happiness she said, “Well in life I was a
like a crawler, no one had noticed me and no one had really bothered about me but ever since
you have projected me in various news papers as the most versatile person with billions of
qualities, I have become an epiphyte (a plant that grows on another plant for support) to be seen
from great distances.”

“In India, most of the women have talent but they need a strong support, some utilize these
supports and others reject it. Those who accept it, they not only grow, they grow at an
exponential rate and others remain confined to the ground” was my natural reaction. Somya will
give me a ring without fail even when she visited her in-laws, she used to give me a miscall
whenever she would be alone and look for refreshing, soothing, inspiring, lovely words from my
side. She would often remind me to make her permanent and I was also keen to see that I do
appoint her in my department as a permanent faculty member so that this temporary tag goes
away from her mindset. After all, she was the most divine gift for me in my life.
Looking at her miscalls, I even started calling her as my miscall lover, she would just laugh and
would say, “You have given me this status and I love it.”

In a short period, I also published a paper in her name and this boosted her academic status in the
department.

Soon, even that day came when she was called for the position of a permanent faculty member in
my department and unofficially, I informed Somya that she has been selected. The Chairman of
the selection committee was my friend and I told him to help for her selection. That day, I had to
leave for my home for about a week and there was no time to meet Somya.

While at home, I always remembered her and to my great surprise, there was no phone call from
her side. Third day, she gave me a miscall and when I contacted, she told me that the
Administrative Officer wants her to go to Calcutta for some library consultations for a fortnight
and she was not keen to leave the city. I told her that she need not worry and I’ll take care of her
interest. But this gave me some kind of a jolt as I couldn’t find Somya’s style of friendly
conversation; she was absolutely dry and formal.

Passing a week without Somya’s voice was the most terrible experience and each and every ring
forced me to remember her. In this terrible period, there were millions of questions in my mind,
“Why a sudden change in her attitude?’

“Whatever nearness she had shown, was it only a fraud?” “Is it her own behavior or someone has
pricked her against me?” Reasons may be many or any, but I was not at all prepared to accept the
very fact that the one, who would make several phone calls each and every day, has suddenly
stopped making even a single phone call?”

In any case, I had no answer and when I came back to the department, she came to me and on
seeing her, I had an emotional outburst and asked, “For your job of Rs. 20,000/-, how many
hours of life are to be devoted on daily basis?”

She said, “Why are you asking this question?”

I was shocked but then I kept myself contended, “No, I am just asking for the sake of some
calculation.”

She said, Well I’ll have to get up at 0700 AM and then be ready to take the Institute’s bus at
0800 AM and then finally, reach at home at 1800 hrs in the evening.”

“So you will be spending exactly 11 hours daily for these stupid Rs. 20,000/- and for the man
who arranged these rupees, you don’t have even 5 minutes per day?”

She never expected me to be so rude, “Oh God! Why are you so annoyed?”

“Yeah why should you be concerned about my annoyance, every minute I waited for your phone
call, every second I remembered you but from your side, nothing is there. I really don’t know,
why should you kill my Somya-the one who would call me several times. Why are you
murdering her?”

“No Sir, I am not murdering her, you are mistaken. I just couldn’t find time, I was busy at
home.”

“This is something I just can’t accept, even while staying with your in-laws, you had time,
perhaps, you don’t me”

“No Sir, I am still your friend.”

“A friend, you never used this terminology before. How can I be your friend, friendship is at
equal age, while love can be between people of different age groups.”

I left my department and came home. I was really upset, upset to the extent that I just couldn’t
sleep the whole night and I decided not to come to the office the next day. There was no phone
call from Somya.

In the evening, a lady colleague of mine told me that Somya met her and told that she is a career
girl and knows the art of climbing up. This further added to my bad mood and I thought that
whatever she had shown, perhaps it was just her trick to be successful. But, strangely she didn’t
know that those who love, they hate too.

Next day, it was a terrible time for me to sit in the department as she never came to me and
remained in some other rooms. Somya who was like heart and lung for me, it was too much of
her betrayal and I decided that either she has to be here or I have to be. I talked to my Chairman
friend and told him the whole story and I told frankly that I need to terminate her services. He
suggested that in the recommendation, he has simply written recommended and I can certainly
add “recommended for re-advertisement”

I was really happy and I did this in the file. In the evening I called my Administrative Officer and
told him that since I have to finalize the accounts for my project, which is due to expire the next
month, I need to terminate services of all the temporary staff with immediate effect.

He was very happy and told Somya, “Madam Somya, your services stand terminated with
immediate effect. Your salary up to today shall be sent to your residence.”

It must have been the most terrible experience for Somya and I am sure, she must have never
expected this to happen. She must have never expected that I will get her terminated. I mean, a
man who always stood by her side, who had given birth to Somya, who had given a new name to
Somya.

But, the reality was I removed her to earn my peace of mind. I had absolutely no regret as she
had cheated me, deceived me and my reaction was just normal.

She wanted to see me but I refused and that was the parting time.
Seven years passed, but I often remembered Somya, as she was part of my soul. She had given
me the most important lesson how to deal with the young girls in my department.

Seven years passed and one fine morning I received a call from JPS University to come as an
expert of a selection committee. I knew that my friend Prof Tiwari must have recommended my
name. In the meanwhile, Prof Tiwari called me and I decided to reach there, a day earlier so that
we will have dinner together. It was the selection of an Associate Professor in the department of
English literature.

When I reached, Prof Tiwari had arranged a nice dinner and asked me, if I would like to have a
peg of whiskey or beer?”

I took a glass of beer, while Prof Tiwari took a large peg of whiskey. We went on discussing
about the status of English literature and the personal life. After about an hour, Prof Tiwari was
dead drunk and told me, “Boss, I love a colleague of mine and I want her to be associate
professor in the department but she lacks the requisite experience.”

“How much is her experience?”

“Actually, she did her M.A. degree in 2002 but she remained sitting at home for a period of one
year.”

“Let me see the bio-data of all the candidates.”

Prof Tiwari pulled out a file containing bio-data of all the candidates and handed over to me.
Prof Tiwari was dead drunk and I started looking at each and every bio-data. There were about 9
candidates called for the interview and suddenly the last bio-data was that of Somya. For a
second I looked at Prof Tiwari and said, “Is this the girl you love the most?”

“Yes, yes she is my heart” said Prof Tiwari

“It is not important that you love her, has she ever responded to you?”

“Sir, she too loves me, in fact, both of us love each other. You know my family life was little
perturbed due to several complications but ever since Somya came in my life, seven years ago,
life has changed. I was her to be rewarded for her loyalty.” Prof Tiwari went on saying so many
things.

“Prof Tiwari, I can add a certificate saying that she worked in my group, in my project for a
period of one year. Will it be ok?”

“Sir, you are great but how can I have the certificate?”

“Don’t worry”, I pulled out my letter head and typed an experience certificate, it was inserted in
her bio-data. Prof Tiwari was more than happy.
While typing a nice certificate for her, I remembered about Somya, past seven years had wiped
out my anger and I realized that alright she has become much wiser now and instead of me at
least my friend is being enjoying the happiness. In fact, happiness is bliss by the almighty; it is
not in everybody’s luck to have it. Whatever little she had done to me, it is time to repay.

Next day, the selection procedure started, I was the Chairman of the committee. When Somya
entered, she showed a sign of acquaintance but I had to refrain to limit to the professional
discussion. After she left, members of the committee were in full appreciation for her
contributions and one of them said, “Sir, after all she started her career under your guidance.”

She was recommended for the Associate Professorship with one additional increment.

Prof. Tiwari was extremely happy and wanted me to have lunch with his group. I was mentally
hesitant and said, “Well, I enjoyed your hospitality, I have many jobs to be handled in my own
department and thus, I would certainly not be in a position to join all of you over lunch but
would certainly come some other time.

My driver opened the back seat of my car. While sitting in the car, I saw Somya standing on the
first floor and as the car moved forward, she slowly waved her hand. It only struck in my mind to
say, “Well, it is a well earned promotion” and by this act, I have removed all the sins that I had
committed while getting Somya removed from my department.


                                              *****

				
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