When I was in IIT, I had so many friends and Prof. Gupta was one of them. Prof. Gupta was very nice person he gave me lot of good advices but I never took them seriously. How I could forget that day when I met with him for the first time, in the campus cafeteria. That day also he gave me a perfect advice but I told you that I had never paid attention to his fruitful advices.
At that time, I was in little tension. I was making some torpid plan so that anyhow I got friendly with my class. When I had finished my sixth cup of coffee, I saw an old man standing beside me and reading my notes. After reading the whole stuff, he asked politely:
“What are you doing son?”
“Nothing just trying to come outta shit” I had given him the weirdest reply.
After giving a thoughtful look to my notes, he sat beside me.
“Son, these notes will never help you,” he said as if he was some ‘gyani mahapurush’ or something.
“What rubbish!” I exclaimed.
“Yeah, lad teaching is not done via making some jerk notes. It is an art and those who gain excellence in this art they become good faculties in their respective fields.” He gave me a philosophical answer and I always feel crap when someone gives me Pravachan in between my work.
“Please sir, right now I am not in the mood to hear your pravachan I have to finish my work. And it is a highly important work.”
“I am not giving you pravachan boy this is truth you do not know anything about this university and what kind of things happening over here.” He said in the James bond style.
“Sir, you are really wasting my time.” I got little miffed. I answered him in a high voice.
“Calm down son I do not have any wrong intention. I just wanted to know the reason why you are making these notes.”
One more thing I want to share about Prof. Gupta that he was very curious man. If he wanted to know something, he left all the shame and anyhow he grabs his information. In addition, he always cures everyone’s problem with great alacrity.
I told him the entire story about the incident that happened in my last class. He heard me very patiently.
“Ok bunny boy so you are trying to impress your students. Not bad at all, one day they will know that you are a good person; there is nothing to worry about.” As he said those words, a link was setup between us. I loved the way in which he understood my feeling.
“Yeah they will sir. But if my second try also get waste then what will I do.”
“Then try again lad I know you have lot of potential”
His words were very encouraging. I had stopped writing notes for my lecture and got busy in schmoozing with him.
“Try again? How many times I will try. I have to finish my course also. I have not started a single unit yet in the class.” A debate kind of thing got started between us.
“Don’t lose this opportunity chap, just swim with the time. In addition, it is the requirement of the time. Stick with this try thing and get hold on your class. I am saying this because I had personally experienced this bull-crap. ”
I got involved in that debate with Prof. because from inside, ‘my heart’ had accepted his fruitful opinion but somewhere my ego stopped me. So due to my ego problem I had shown him that I was hearing his stuff just for passing my time. Indian mentality again! Albeit, whatever I was doing was wholly wrong but for me it was partially ok. I was creating my own world. I was there just to teach and earn some fat cash so that I could support my dad. In addition, I was only the earning source in the family. I sent ten thousand rupees every month to my family so that my parents never suffer any pain due to money factor. After debating with Prof. Gupta, I got chilaxed. My all worries ended with that debate. Now it was the time to hit the button. I signed off from the cafeteria, saying thanks to Prof. and reached my room for further preparations.
Faculties in that college hardly took any class besides it was a private university. That day I had arranged my class little earlier as per the plan. As I reached the staffroom, I saw that all the young faculties celebrating Myra’s birthday. They were inviting me also in that celebration but I refused their proposal. I was only the new recruit in that college and I had not even a single friend over there. Before making friends I always go for the type. First, I find friends of my type and then my hand goes to them for camaraderie. I had already chosen my students as my friends in the college.
I reached the lecture theatre on the scheduled time. As I entered into the class, everyone got super shocked. I started taking lecture without confabulating with the students and this was the key point of my plan.
“So today we begin our first unit ‘Boolean Algebra’, as you already know what this chapter is all about, I am expecting that you know the basics” I had a well-executed plan and I was glad that my notes and hard work had shown me fast result. Everyone was listening to my lecture with keen interest and my excitement level was going up every second. At a sudden, I threw a simple cum twisty question among the studious audience.
“Anybody know who invented this Boolean algebra”
A silence entered into the class a small frequency murmuring was only audible in the lecture theatre.
After few seconds, I broke the deadly silence.
“No one? Strange! I am again saying let me know that you know the basics or not.” I said in a rhyming tone as if besides engineering class I was teaching some playgroup tiny tots.
“Sir, we know the basics but we do not know the history of this unit. This is engineering class not arts or something shit.” A dull voice came from the second row.
“Ok. I know but who’s that chap. Come out I heard your query.” I replied to that dull voice but this time I got little miffed but I controlled my anger. I wanted to make a cool atmosphere during the lecture and side by side, I wanted to remove the anonymous panic or anger from the students as well. This time beautiful, lass came out.
“Sorry sir, I will not repeat this kinda nuisance again during the lecture.” She said by continuously looking down via hiding something from me. First, I thought that might be again they were trying to do something mischievous with me but when I unfolded her hands, the story was completely different than I expected.
“It’s ok I am not gonna eat you for this and stop shaking your hands.”
I noticed some serious wounds in her hands but I was not sure about what I had seen. I called her again and unfolded her hands. This time I got a quadrupled shock. So many cuts and lines were there as if she got serious beatings from someone. Nevertheless, the question stops at “why” and “whom”.
“From where you got these wounds dear,” I asked her sympathetically.
She remained silent for few minutes and I was waiting that when she would ‘off’ her silent mode and the moment came for which I waited too long, the hand mystery revealed.
“I got slipped in the washroom” her half-heartedly given answer had not satisfied my curiosity.
“Are you nuts? Please give me the actual answer not a story.”
“Try him Devika” Imtiaz stood up from his place.
“NO yar, he is a faculty member.” She replied to him in severe frustration. “Sorry sir I won’t.”
She came back to her place and started crying. I got surprised and started thinking that why these students are behaving like this. This time I made a move towards Devika to say sorry to her. In addition, I wanted to know the reason behind her wounded hands. However, she started crying so heavily that I stopped my feet. At that time, I thought that might be I called her nuts in front of the whole class so for that she was crying so much. I got no perfect reason for this and I felt pity for that young beautiful lass. My whole plan was spoiled and then I suddenly realised that Prof. Gupta was right, no plans, no notes help you in teaching. Teaching is an art not a football match. Time was almost over so I ended my lecture via giving them some notes so that they would not suffer in their upcoming exams. I ended my lecture and made a move towards the staffroom. Prof. Gupta was standing at the entrance of the staffroom as if he already knows that I was coming there.
“Why your face is so dull?” Prof. Gupta asked in his James bond style.
I remained silent as my mood was off. I was in a shock and I did not wanted to discuss about this stuff with anyone.
“I am ok. Sir” I replied in a shaky voice.
“No you are not, son, I wanna tell you something”
“Sorry sir I am not in a mood to listen your pravachan. I want to relax. Shall we talk later?” I started walking away from that spot.
“Ok lad, this means, you liked Devika’s story.” He shouts.
I stopped and turned back slowly.
“Whoa!” I was in a severe shock and my mouth was ajar.
“Yeah, boy I know everything. Devika’s hands wounded due to chidings and beatings of Prof. Khanna. He is a real psycho.”
“Where is he, I want to kill him, right now. Where is his cabin? That pest should not have the right to survive in this world.” I got excited and started shouting like a mad man.
“Hold on boy. Don’t shout. I do not have the full proof. He was in my black list, that’s all.” Prof. Gupta made my excitement level down.
In this university right from the beginning, I got so many shocks. Moreover, this was a big blow for me.
“Where is it, I wanna see that list.” I asked him with great cheerful readiness.
“Nope, I will show you but at the right time. You are not prepared for this, right now.”
My all excitement goes down to minus level. I took my bag and started walking towards my cabin. In addition, like a door attendant Prof. waved his hand and gave me a continuous pleasant smile until I reached my cabin.