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C R Dash

Abstract Tragedy Others


4.0  

C R Dash

Abstract Tragedy Others


The RTO

The RTO

5 mins 237 5 mins 237

When I got the offer to teach Anita, a class 10 girl who badly needed coaching in English, I met their parents and was deeply impressed by their sweet manners and friendly etiquette. Despite wealth and prosperity, they had not been lacking in humanity and humility. "What nice people!" I had exclaimed to me on my way back home.


Anita's father was a burly dark-skinned man with a partly bald pate. A beautiful smile never left his lips. His name was Basant Kumar Mohanty. As I started teaching his daughter, our familiarity grew. 

When Mrs. Mohanty would be absent from home,

her gentle husband would often make a cup of tea or coffee and serve the same to me. He had two daughters. His elder daughter Sunita was studying medical science to become a doctor. Anita was not a highly intelligent girl but I couldn't think she was dull either. She worked just as much as she was told to. However, she did very well in English in her class 10 exams. After I thought they would send her somewhere like Bengaluru for further studies. Mrs. Mohanty however remained in touch with me. She would often tell me to talk to Anita and encourage her to do hard labor. 


Mr.Mohanty and I had a deep interest in spirituality. 

I had seen him many times chanting mantras. He was great in my spiritual writings. He had once said to me with a smile, "Sir no one can write like you unless some true realization of the existence of God. It becomes amply clear when a self-realized person talks to you about God and spirituality...."


Whenever we met he asked me, "Sir any new experience?....." And my experiences were endless I had no difficulty telling him something curious and interesting.


My familiarity with them was such that my wife and daughter also knew them well. I always compared the RTO and his wife with other rude parents. Even now many parents of the boys and girls I had taught once sometimes get back to me and talk solicitously.


In the year 2015, I bought a new Hero motorcycle.

But I was destined to face a big problem. The address I had given the transport authorities was wrong. It was my brother-in-law who had written the address and had committed the mistake of writing it incorrectly. The registration certificate was issued to me and it came to me by post. The postman knew I was the person concerned to receive it but he refused to hand over the certificate to me citing that he might face disciplinary action if he delivered it to me at the wrong address. The certificate came to me thrice and went back to the RTO office each time. I was helpless.I decided to meet the RTO and tell him about my problem. A few weeks back I had heard from his wife that Mr. Mohanty who previously posted in Angul had been transferred to Bhubaneswar. The man was as good as gold. 


I had two problems. The first was to correct the incorrect address and the second was the renewal of my driving license. I wanted to ask him why the concerned officer didn't rectify the wrong address despite several reminders. Secondly, I also wanted the renewal of my driving license.

When I told my wife about Mr. Mohanty, she became very much interested to apply for her own driving license.


It was a very hot afternoon. Both of us being busy people we decided to go to the RTO office. I was in a most carefree state of mind. We reached the RTO office. My wife said she would prefer to stay outside. This was something unexpected. But I was familiar with such strange behavior of hers.

I said, "You want your driving license but you are unwilling to visit Mr.Mohanty....!" She simply ignored me decisively but went to a sugar cane juice vendor. As I was looking on, she said with a smile," You have diabetes. You can't drink the juice.." Annoyed and hurt, I entered the office of the RTO. 


As I entered the passage leading to the main office, I saw the gentleman in his seat. I wondered how overjoyed he would be the moment he sighted me there in his office. I said, "Sir may I come in ?"

He was writing something poring over a huge yellowish notebook. He didn't respond. I kept standing there waiting to enter his office. When I repeated my request, he raised his eyes but didn't utter a single word. He pretended not to have recognized me. I said to him, "Sir... Namaskar." He was too haughty to accept my namaskar.

Someone else entered the room and I followed him. I sat on a chair for about fifteen minutes away from his seat. I thought he didn't recognize me and said, "Sir I taught English to your 

daughter...!" Still, then he didn't say anything. A man came and placed a teacup on his table. He started enjoying his tea. Then a man came to him and gave some information. He said to the man, "He has some problem...Fix it." The man told me to follow him. I was experiencing extreme pain inside. I had forgotten all about my wife waiting for me outside.


I signed some papers. The man said to me, "Now everything is okay. This time your registration certificate will go to your right address..." 


I said, "I also need to renew my driving license..." He said, "Go and tell Mohanty Sir." I didn't know how Mohanty would react. I went to his office again and wanted to tell him about my other problem. He barked sharply ordering me to leave the office at once. I came out of the office. Thank God I had restrained my tears. But my wife sensed something had gone wrong with me. Hiding my feelings I said, "Why didn't you go? I got the address corrected..."


There were illegal intermediaries everywhere in front of the office. She had successfully applied for her driving license through one of them. As we were coming home on the motorcycle, she kept asking, "What happened? What did Anita's father tell you? " I kept riding the bike ignoring her questions resolutely. 


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