Saturday, August 02, 2008


February 23, 1982-Portland Hospital Calcutta-A woman cries out in labor pain, and the doctors try their best to ease her pain. The situation seems hopeless and all chances of a normal delivery are ruled out. The woman’s elder brother is worried and signs some forms so that the doctors can perform a Caesarean surgery to save mother and child.

The doctors continue to toil and a baby boy is delivered, but the tiny child is silent and shows no sign of life; the elderly chief doctor is a worried man; he prays for a miracle and asks for an oxygen cylinder. The oxygen mask brings life to the child and the tiny boy moves his feeble arms in protest; but he still does not cry. Is this child dumb? Will it survive the hour? In an act of desperation the doctor taps the child’s rump-“Waaa.” The child wailed and the doctors breathed a collective sigh of relief. If you are wondering what this was all about-well that is the story of my birth.

1985-Pune-Ajmera School-I wear my school uniform – light blue shirt, navy blue trousers, and formally enter the Indian educational system.

1988-Dad gets a job offer in Calcutta, and we move lock, stock, and barrel to Calcutta. A new city new people and above all I meet my grandparents and elder sister for the first time.

April 17 1988-I enter the hallowed corridors of M.P. Birla Foundation Higher Secondary School for the first time.

April 1989- I receive the thrashing of my life from my elder maternal uncle and then my mother for lying. The lie – I told my mother that my uncle had given me permission to buy a rubber ball, and my mother bought me a rubber ball, and my poor mother trusting her dear son bought the ball. My uncle on returning from office finding me playing with the ball found out the truth. That thrashing made me realize the importance of truth and trust. “Never lie to the ones you love.”

The next day my uncle bought me a real cricket ball. It was also the day that I was introduced to the wonderful world of Tintin and Snowy. My uncle bought me my first Tintin comic “Tintin and the Blue Lotus.” That day I fell in love with books and it has remained a lifelong passion.

October 1989-My first visit to South India with my younger maternal uncle starts on an adventurous note. I manage to get separated from my uncle in the crowd at Howrah station. As my uncle bangs his head in frustration, wondering how he would face my mother. I coolly walk to the station master’s office and report to the puzzled man “Railway Uncle mein mere mama se bichhad gaya. My name is M…. and my uncle’s name is….”

The station master makes an announcement on the public address system, and my poor uncle who has aged ten years in the short span of thirty minutes rushes into the station master’s office, where he finds me calmly snacking on a Cadburys Five Star sponsored by “Railway Uncle.”

He thanks the station master profusely and the two of us proceed to board the Coromandal Express and I reach the land of my forefathers.

Fifteen days of fun as I visit Madras and Pondicherry, meet my cousins and enjoy the care and affection showered on me by my various uncles and aunts.

1990 and 1991-Both my grandparents die. I miss both of them a void that can perhaps never be filled.

1990-I become class monitor for the first time. The best year of my life at school. Absolute fun and a super class teacher called Mr S.K. Bagchi, for the first time I enjoyed Maths under his guidance and teaching. My father starts his series of contract jobs in the Middle East and leaves for Muscat.

I hit my first fifty in a local club match. For the first time the dadas whom we used to admire sat up and took notice of the little Madrasi kid. Then it was cricket and football everyday. Things came to a point where I would wait for the school bell to ring and I would rush home, dump my bag, drink Bournvita/juice and rush to the cricket ground.

1992-Involved in a fight for the first time, I return home badly bruised. I vow revenge and start practicing kickboxing. No one knows it at home, even today. I train by myself, borrow books from the school library and watch the senior students practicing Taekwondo at school and learn a lot.

Six months to the day I got beaten. I beat the shit out of the gang of four who had humiliated me. Surprisingly we become friends and the GANG is formed.

1994-My elder sister is married and she leaves for Nagpur.

1995-Meet with a serious accident; suffer serious head injuries and miss one whole year of school as I recuperate.

1996-Join a new school La Maternelle, a small and simple school with no pretensions.

1998-Dad sends a letter to my uncle asking him to send me and mother to Tiruvallur, in Tamil Nadu, where he has found a job and decided to settle. I bid goodbye to Calcutta.

May 1, 1998-I land in Chennai, and it has been one hectic journey since then..

April 2002-I complete my higher secondary course.

May 2002—May 2005-Three years of bliss in R.K.M. Vivekanada College, Mylapore, Chennai. English Literature at its best, under the guidance of two of the finest gentlemen I have ever met in my life-Professor K.V. Rao and Professor B. Suresh.

December 2002—2003-Win lots of competitions at various institutions in different events. A team comprising me and my classmate Vikas become a formidable quizzing team. I discover a passion for theatre, and start writing scripts for plays.

February 2004-Another accident and this time ended up in a coma and almost went to the grave. The doctors saved me once again and somewhere during the course of my surgery, I guess there was a bit of self-realization and spiritual enlightenment; as I realized that there is a definite purpose for me being here in this world, in this life, in this form.

May 2005-My first corporate job, which I landed after a campus placement program, as I join Sify as an Instructional Designer. Meet a fascinating set of people and made some friends.

January 2007-I land my second job and quit it in April 2007.

May 2007-I land my third job.

May 2008- I write the Indian Civil Services Preliminary Examinations.

August 2008-I am currently on my third job. In all due probability will be leaving it soon to prepare for the next batch of examinations.

1 comment:

Aswin Kini said...

Wow! A superb narration of your til-date autobiography, nice da!!!

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