Sunday, November 23, 2008


It was one of those Mumbai mornings. The city was already at work and the clock hadn’t striked 6. Sahen was trying hard to catch some sleep in that little bunker like room he took for rent. He kept tossing and turning and was finding it hard to sleep all due to the extremely loud traffic noise which came in from outside his room. He woke up in a few minutes after six and got some water to clean his eyes. He then peeped out of the window to take a look at the Mumbai city, his not so beloved home for the past one year. People say, Mumbai is India’s big apple, Mumbai, India’s city of dreams; however I’m sure people who read Sahen’s story would beg to differ sooner or later. Sahen then took a quick bath and picked up a paper from his bag, it looked like an official letter. The paper read:

“Richardson & Co”
Invites you for a personal interview based on your qualification for the post of “Electrical Saw Engineer” kindly be present at the following address at 09:30 A.M. for the interview.

As always Sahen had a little smirk on his face after reading this letter, this had been the 12th time he had applied for a job in Mumbai since the past one year. Rampur, a name which most of us Indians have probably never heard was from where Sahen hailed. He was the only brother among 5 sisters all younger to him. Rampur was a village famous for its sun-flower and sugar-cane farms. Sahen’s dad, Bodha Singh, was once the most famous farmer at Rampur who probably made the maximum income amounting to the amount of land their family owned. However, as the old saying goes, “none will know when fate will strike” and so did it happen in their case as well. Bodha Singh purchased a huge land and borrowed a large sum of money from one of the financiers in the village. The villagers were so sure that Bodha Singh would never make a mistake when it came to business that they would give him a loan even without an interest rate. One night soon after the purchase of the land Bodha Singh caught hold of his chest all of a sudden, as expected he died of a massive heart-attack. And since, his wife was deserted with 5 daughters and one son she was stranded. She had to sell off most of Bodha Singh’s lands to clear the loan he had borrowed from the financier. The financier taking advantage of the lady’s helplessness charged a huge interest rate and this led to her selling of most other lands which they once owned. And thus ultimately ended up in being the pauper, from once being a prince. She now had 5 daughters to wed and absolutely no money to spend for the same. Her only hope now was her son Sahen, whom she had very well educated when compared to the amount of education other village boys had received. Sahen has studied up to pre-university and after that had done a diploma in electrical engineering. All she could do now was to send Sahen to Mumbai, “the city of dreams” so that he could earn enough money in order to get all his seven sisters married. Sahen’s mother was of the impression that, anyone who went to Mumbai with education would become a millionaire.

It was already 8 ‘o’ clock and Sahen just finished eating his break-fast which consisted of half a slice of old bread. He could not afford anything since he had absolutely no money. He would generally end up walking miles because he could not even afford to take a bus. He was near broke. He just had about two hundred rupees which he had saved in order to make sure he can get back home if he could not find himself a job back here. Sahen decided that if he failed to get through this appointment, he would return to Rampur the next moment. He had nearly given up. He then wore his yellow shirt, which now was brown, thanks to the pollution and dust Mumbai city gives free of cost and combed his rough hair neatly. He held his file consisting of his few certificates and hit the streets.

Before he realized, he was standing right in front of Richardson and co, the company in which he had applied for his job, It looked fancy and beautiful from outside. Sahen’s interview was scheduled for 9.30 A.M and he was early by half an hour, so he thought he could take a stroll around the famous dalal street which was round the corner. He walked a few steps ahead and froze at once when he saw the Mumbai Stock exchange. He lost his breath looking at the enormous structure and the number of people surrounding it. As he walked further he heard the cries of people, now this is what he least expected from them. Before he could even realize a huge fight broke out in the crowd. He could hear people scream and cry loudly. He heard an old man crying and shouting obstinately that he has lost everything in life. The stock market had crashed and this is what resulted in infuriating the crowd. Before Sahen could realize, he could see slippers and stones being thrown in the air. He had to do a lot of zig-zag running to save himself from being bruised. Suddenly when a stone hit him on his head, he could not help but retaliate, “What on earth is wrong with you people? have you gone mad?” and the next second there were people who were ten times his size surrounding him and asking him what he said. He tried to run, but the angry mob did not spare him. At once, they started hitting him black and blue. Sahen also got completely involved in the fight and began to hit them back. The scuffle they were having was very dreadful and horrific. Somehow Sahen tried defending himself. He could fight about fifteen men, ten times his size and defend himself without getting injured for a long period. Everyone have a saturation point of their own and Sahen had reached his. He got on his feet and began running into a dark alley. He was hurt on his head and as he ran he could hear other people running behind him. He ran as far as he could and then he definitely couldn’t run further. At this point quite obviously, he fainted and fell right on his nose.
When he gained his senses, Sahen was shaken at once. He got to his feet immediately not being able to realize where exactly he was. He was in a nice cozy room and was surrounded by about four people all staring at him with a small smile on their face. “What, who?” was the first thing Sahen said looking dazed and confused. “We rescued you.” the man standing closest to Sahen said, winking at him the next second. “Oh! Thank you, I need to rush for an interview now.” he said. “We rescued you and all you can do to show us your gratitude is say a thank you?” A huge man with about ten gold chains hanging on his neck said with a grin. “Well…” Sahen said dragging the word a little too much. “What do you want me to do?” he said shrugging. “We saw you fight.” said the third man. “Ok… So?” Sahen has interrogatively. “We want you to fight for us.” “WHAT?” Sahen asked completely surprised. “Look, we belong to a community which kills for money.” replied the same man. Raju Bhai was that man’s name. He led a community of ruffians and gangsters. Their job was to kidnap, murder, bribe etc all in the name of money. Sahen was awestruck. He did not know what to say. “We saw the way you fought that furious mob at Dalal Street. We liked your enthusiasm and level of anger.” He continued. “What exactly do you want me to do?” enquired Sahen totally confused. “We want you to join our gang, we will pay you well. You have absolutely no idea as to how much money you can make being a part of us.” Said Raju bhai. “At the cost of my life? Never!” said Sahen, his voice angered. “Ok, then be prepared to die!” said Raju bhai holding a revolver in his hand pointed towards Sahen. “Let me think. Wait!” said Sahen. He then had an image of his mother, crying, in his mind. He thought of his sisters, whom he loved so much, he thought about the amount of money he needed to get them married. He then thought about how he suffered for one whole year in Mumbai city moving from pillar to post in search of a job. He realized that he lost his last option of getting a job in “Richardson & co” as well. And now, if he went back home this way, his entire family would be devastated. He had no options left. “Well, what is my task?” “Good!” said Raju bhai with that signature grin of his again. “You will be a part of our kid-napping team. We kidnap people for ransom. I’ll make sure you don’t have to kill anyone, you’re subtle and naïve, I promise you that.” said Raju bhai assuring. “well, ok.” Sahen said. “We have to leave now, be ready by 5 tomorrow morning. Your kit and clothes are in that cupboard. No delay. And make sure you take everything you need. We are kidnapping Ahuja’s daughter tomorrow.” Raju bhai said. “Can you give me some money as an advance? I need to send some to my mother.” Sahen said with a soft tone in his voice. Raju bhai pulled out about four Rs. Fifty thousand bundles and threw them on my bed. Sahen was happy, he could finally send some money home actually a lot of money. The man with the several chains on his neck then spoke, “You betray us, your entire family…” he said giving a long pause. Sahen knew what he meant, “I get it, don’t worry, you can trust me.” Sahen said guaranteeing them.

The next morning, he woke up at 3 A.M. He was both happy as well as nervous. He could finally send home some money. This gave him a huge feeling of pride and honour and at the same time, he had to kid-nap a young girl. This stirred fear in his stomach. At 5 A.M. sharp he waited at the end of the street. A car drove past him and stopped a few yards ahead. He recognized Raju bhai signaling to him from the car. He went and sat in the car and the car sped off. The evening news-papers read, “Top industrialist Ram Ahuja’s daughter kidnapped.” They had successfully managed to abduct Ahuja’s daughter, the gangsters had a party that night, when Raju bhai formally introduced Sahen to the rest of the gangsters. “This is our new member, Sahen Singh from Rampur, He proved his worth today by helping us abduct Ahuja’s daughter. I must say, this boy has a long way to go in our company.” Raju bhai said as he raised his glass for a toast. Sahen did not know whether he had to smile or just keep a plain face. After a few moments, Raju bhai came forward and told Sahen that Ahuja has agreed to pay the ransom amount of Rs ten crores. He then told him that he had a 25% share over this money. When Sahen heard this, he burst out into tears. His dreams were finally coming to life. He found his way to earn money. What started as a helpless need for money was turning out to be a lot of money now. He could get all his sisters married into big families and yet have enough money to keep himself and his mother happy.

Everytime he got himself some money, he would send a major portion of it to his mother. His mother definitely was right, Mumbai, definitely could make people millionaire’s. Little did Sahen know that what started out as a small time affair would one day make him one of the most wanted gangsters in the world. From kidnapping Sahen began murdering people, vulnerable children were tortured. All for the love of money. Sahen had his mother’s face in his mind every time he did something. He felt the pain he saw in her eyes when he lost his father and did not mind going up to any extent to make more and more money. In a few years, Sahen was black-listed and was put in the most-wanted category by the C.B.I and the police force. Sahen’s life was in danger. Though he got himself so much of money, he lost nearly everything else in life. After a few years, after committing endless murders, Sahen was caught and given a life-term sentence. The poor innocent boy, who moved from Rampur to Mumbai to get himself a job just to support his family, had lost it all, this was the end to his story.
Unemployment is one such outrageous disease which can ruin a person’s life. The above story might be fiction, but there are possibilities for such instances to occur. When a person strives so much for a job and he is helpless, he cannot do much but opt for jobs like what Sahen chose for himself. India has the maximum number of employment opportunities, but the qualification it requires is over the top. People with a basic qualification find it so hard to get themselves a job. It’s high time, we start having more employment opportunities for people with varied qualifications. If not, all we can expect is probably another Sahen. This would definitely leed to dooms-day for most individuals. Unemployment should be wiped out from the very soil of this planet. People should be given opportunities to help them survive themselves and their families if not, we can surely look forward to more stories like this in real life.

1 comment:

hadley shemaiah said...

i could cry...what are we proud of as indians..???