How I became a Millionaire
How I became a Millionaire8 mins 408 8 mins 408
I had passed out of the University with flying colors and flying expectations too. I was a Post Graduate in Economics and thought no end of myself. I dreamt of occupying a coveted top-level job with a fat salary, my pockets bulging with notes, and the merriest song in my heart. I boasted of my academic qualifications and asserted with implicit confidence that to get a plum job was a child’s play. All my friends looked on with envy, if not with jealousy!
A year elapsed, then two years, then another ---I was becoming a good customer of Bata Shoes-- my shoes were getting worn off very fast by having to continually make the rounds of the would-be employers. Gradually my self- esteem dwindled, my self -confidence got sapped, and my bulky figure became stream-lined. My finances had already dived. I did not put on airs anymore, or to be more precise, I could not afford to. I became a meek and humble person, with no more of the “holier than thou “attitude. Where ever I went to present my applications, the vacancies were invariably filled up. I was not experienced enough or others were more experienced than I.
How is one to get experience if the more experienced is always given preference? My stars seemed to be anything other than favorable.
Besides if one has been at a puppet show, one knows how the dolls dance as the strings are pulled. It was the same when getting a job. Some pulled the strings with Party influence, others with money, not to speak of those highly connected, and the “omnipotent Management” said to be impervious to corruption, danced to their unscrupulous tune. One can visualize my predicament because I did not have any strings. I had no means to make the puppets dance. When one is without any means, without any money and food in one's stomach, one has to take recourse to stratagem. That I did. Now I am no more “good-for-nothing. “ Now I can put a feather in my cap and brag that I am a Millionaire!
To become a millionaire I had to get the Almighty’s blessings and for that too perhaps unless I promised Him a suitable offering, He would not grant me the favor for which I had made a request, and which now I direly needed. I had many options but as the saying goes, I wanted ‘ to kill two birds with one stone’. I told God that I was going to install a statue of His, in this case, Hers,( as it happened she was a Goddess) under a banyan tree, somewhere on one of the street pavements; in return, She had to give me a roaring and a soaring income.
The deal having been finalized, I went straight to the market and bought a spectacular Mother Kali’s statue, about two feet in height, made of polished granite, with a characteristic protruding red tongue. Then my next job was to find an appropriate banyan tree. That task having been accomplished, I installed the statue, and sat down in front of it, and started telling all the passers-by, as they stopped to offer their obeisance, that the goddess was extremely powerful and had cured me of pernicious cancer, even when the doctors had certified that I was a hopeless case.
Slowly a crowd gathered there and devotees thronged the place. The empty plate which I had placed before the statue got covered with crisp delectable notes and I kept a surreptitious watch from the corner of my eye to make a note as to how much money was coming in. This continued day after day and it seemed to me that I had been successful in propitiating the Goddess because I was slowly able to buy a one-roomed apartment, then two rooms, and it did not take very long to add another room to make my establishment more comfortable.
Here I must add that I do not believe in only one source of income. They say one should not ‘put all the eggs in one basket. I think it is very good advice. If there is an untoward mishap all the unfortunate eggs would be doomed. So I took recourse to the second ploy.
I pretended to be a sadhu who could tell people’s fortune and could also banish the impending bad luck by prescribing amulets. This would be a good source of income as every forecast about the looming misfortune would be charged! Besides if one's destiny was to be changed for the better, it could not be below the market rate it would cost quite a big sum, depending on the gravity and seriousness of the situation! First of all, according to the tenets elucidated by Dale Carnegie, I told each customer that he was a very good person.
He had qualities that few people had. This was the honey to catch my flies. After boosting the person’s ego I added that he was an extremely fortunate person because shortly he would get some unexpected good news. Human nature is such that man always thinks no end of himself and if one wants to weave a spell over another, he has only to promise him what is most dear to his heart.
Knowing this stratagem I used it with all the subtle techniques skillfully, so much so that I started to get customers like bees thronging a hive. Then as both the planets, Jupiter and Mars seemed to be in very favorable positions concerning my horoscope, it happened that four out of ten predictions clicked at random by mere fluke. When the clients came back excitedly to report that whatever I had foretold had come to pass, my fame and name spread far and wide like wildfire. I started having an inflated opinion about my capabilities and even began believing that I had become an illustrious Oracle, and this gave me immense satisfaction.
After my initial success, I started getting brain wave after brain wave. The waves came in quick succession, and one after the other. Becoming rich seemed quite simple. Now I had been able to buy one of the most prestigious bungalows in one of the poshest localities in Kolkata, which is in Alipore. I then hit upon the idea of becoming a property agent.
I quickly looked up the papers to find out the prospective buyers and the property owners. I contacted them and brought them face to face. At this juncture, I had to impress upon the buyer that he was making a bargain in getting such a good property at such a cheap rate and so he should expeditiously close the deal, otherwise the property would slip out of his hand.
On the other hand, the seller had to know that if he did not release the property fast, the buyer would see through the flaws and cancel the deal. As for my part in the transaction, which was only a lot of talking, I made it clear to them that my share was two percent of the deal. In this way without any investment, I started adding to my sky-rocketing bank balance. It was great fun and I enjoyed every bit of it.
Then it came to my mind that I could become a Homeopathic Doctor. My lack of knowledge would not be easily detected and set up a chamber would not entail a lot of expense. I went to the market and bought bags full of globules, some small and some big. Small see-through glass bottles had to be purchased too. After getting the names of medicines from a homeopathic book I printed them out and pasted them on the bottles.
Then my chamber having been neatly set up with the bottles with the white globules in view, an eye-catching placard was put up where my name was prominently written and the appropriate degrees about the qualifications were impressively added on. Now as the patients streamed in with their multifarious complaints, I heard them out patiently, empathized with them and after examining them in a sham procedure, handed out a vial of the so-called medicine and asked them to report after a week.
By that time the sickness would have run through its usual course and the symptoms would have abated. But the credit would be given to the magical potions administered by a wonderful doctor. More and more patients would be seen heading towards the Chamber for the few white pellets with miraculous healing powers. But the patients had to follow a strict regimen during the span of their treatment—not having garlic or coffee as the strong smell would spoil the effect of the medicine. These restrictions made the treatment more appealing and effective!
People say that ‘a rolling stone gathers no moss.’ But it was not true in my case for though I was rolling in wealth, I was gathering not only people’s adulation but also their acceptance and respect too. I seemed to have reached the apogee of my ambition but then a meteorite came crashing into my complacency and in a matter of minutes my life changed.
My IAS results were out and I had ranked a Topper. Shortly I would be informed about my posting. My heart is filled with joy, I made up my mind to sell my house immediately and donate all the ill-gotten wealth to an orphanage. I resolved to start afresh and walk into a beautiful world where there would be only the sparkle of my outstanding work and caliber, and the satisfaction of knowing that helpless little child, without mother or father were not left to cry on the Kolkata streets. Besides, as the saying goes ‘it is never too late to turn on a new leaf,’ and ‘ it is better late than never!’