Sunday, June 14, 2009

Proof of residence

Tanwar had retired as a teacher almost two decades ago. Age had caught up with him and taken its toll on his body. His hair had gone completely gray .The limbs had become weak and feeble. The back was bent and Arthritis made his life painful. With his children working in distant lands, he and his wife continued to live in their old house on the small pension he received. His sons sent him some money to augment his income to live comfortably. Except for the general weakness, he was keeping fit and life was going on smoothly.
The cooking gas company one day insisted on his production of a valid ration card to accept the booking for a refill.Tanwars had no ration card. They allowed it to lapse as the items given in ration shop were of inferior quality. He checked with neighbors and all of them had ration cards or got one to meet the requirements of the gas company. On reaching the ration office, he found a long serpentine queue of people with touts selling forms and filling them up. It took an hour in the hot sun for him to enter even the portals of the building. He found many returning grumbling that they have to come back with some more proof of their residence. As he neared the counter he found the clerk in irritable and impatient mood turning away many applicants at the slightest pretext. He never lent any ear to their protests. Possibly he was strictly complying with the rules which the applicants were not aware of till they came to this office.
Tanwar became nervous whether he would also be turned out as he had no proof of residence except a notice from his colony association seeking donation for some cause. When his turn came, he was expecting the same fate as had befallen others. When the prickly clerk took his application, he stood up and Tanwar thought he would be leaving for some respite or rest room. But the clerk continued to scrutinize the application and asked him to wait. He went inside his officer’s room and came back in a few minutes to tell smilingly ”Sir, your card would reach your house tomorrow or the latest the day after.”
Tanwar was wonderstruck at such a metamorphosis in his behavior. He thanked him profusely and told him of his apprehensions of possible rejection based on what he had witnessed. He asked the clerk how come he was so nice to him.
He replied ” You are different, Tanwar Sir, I am your old student and still see you living in the same house whenever I pass thro that side .No proof of residence is necessary for you . You might have forgotten me but despite the long years I cannot forget you or your effort to make a man of me ”


  1. Even today, to get things done in a government office, u need the extra luck factor aka connection or some repute.
    Lucky for Tanwar Sir, but wat about the non-sirs in the crowd?

  2. For Every action there is a equal and opposite reaction ..

  3. Thanks for the comments,dear friends

  4. Blessings & Namaste....
    The seeds of good intent was planted by the teacher in the boy and which grew in the man and was reaped by the teacher.

    Very nice....

  5. Teaching is a very dignified profession, through it there are loads of people who benefit. A teacher is an asset to society,a being who makes the most powerful and the mighty..its been hapenning through history.Even kings respected their teachers and stood up when they came..thats the power of being the source for spreading the everlasting ray of knowledge.

  6. dear partha,
    reall y nice.when people recognise me as chandrika teacher's daughter,i can see the love and respect they have for my amma,their teacher!iam so proud of amma's profession as the knowledge is imparted with values.
    whenever i visit your site,partha i go back enriched!
    keep writing.

  7. This post, to me, reinforces the value of being nice and sincere with everyone. Every positive action has a positive reaction...

  8. If only more people were as lucky in such cases as Tanwar...