India Is Changing

IITian and rickshawala, a nice piece of conversation – by an anonymous IITian.

(Note: We don’t know if it is a true story or not but it is indeed good to read)

This one is delightfully interesting to read.

There were two rickshaw-walas vying for our business when we wanted to go to Sankat-moc-han temple in Benaras. I agreed to go with the one who was about 20, seemed like a regular young rickshaw-wala, but I found something interesting about this fellow in his eyes. I was not proved wrong.
He wanted Rs 50, we said Rs 30. We settled for 40. Here are the highlights of the conversation that ensued while he rode the rickshaw:
“aap kahan se aaye hain”
“bijness ya kaam karte hain?”
“naukri karte hain”
“internet mein”
“humara bhi kuch wahin kaam lagwa do”
I just chuckled
“main try kar raha hoon engineering padhne kee. achchi naukri lag jaayegi tab”
“achcha?” I asked a little interested
“haan, delhi mein Guru Gobind Singh Indraprashta University mein engineering ke liye apply kara hai. achchi hai woh university”
“haan, achchi hai”, I agreed.
“haan, kal hee maine JEE bhi diya”
“JEE matlab, IIT ka?”
“haan, Joint Entrance Examination” he pronounced it perfectly just to make it clear to me what JEE stood for. “mushkil hota hai exam”
“haan, 2 saal toh log padhte hee hain uske liye, asaan nahin hai” I carried on the conversation
“Delhi mein Akaash coaching institute hain na?”
“haan, hai”
“aapne kya padhai kari?”
“main engineer hoon, aur phir mba bhi kiya”
“kahan se engineer?”
“IIT delhi se”
He swung back, surprised, a little delighted, and smiled.”Ok, aapke liye Rs 30″
Swati and I laughed
Swati asked”padhai kab karte they IIT ke liye”
“bas, rickshaw chalaane ke baad raat mein”. Then he added”kismein engineering kari aapne?”
“toh aapki chemistry toh badi strong hogi”
“nahin, aisa nahin hai”
He continued”yeh bataiye….jab Mendeleev ne Periodic Table banaya tha tab kitne elements they usmein?”
Now it was my turn to get surprised. He was quizzing me. I said”shayad 70-80″
“no, 63″ he said sharply.”kaunse element kee electronegativity highest hai?”
Swati was laughing, and I didnt try too hard and said”pata nahin”
“Flourine”, he said confidently. Without a break he asked,”kaunse element kee electron affinity highest hoti hai?”
Now I was laughing too and said”nahin pata”
“Chlorine. toh aapka kaunsa subject strong tha?” clearly having proven that my chemistry wasnt a strong point
“Physics”, I said
“achha, Newton’s second law of motion kya hai”
I knew this one I thought,”F=ma” I said
“Physics is not about formula, it is understanding concept!” he reprimanded me in near perfect english.”Tell me in statement”
I was shocked. Swati continued to laugh.
I said”ok, Newtons second law, er….was….”
” ‘was’ nahin, ‘is’!Second law abhi bhi hai!” he snapped at my use of ‘was’
Surely, my physics wasnt impressing him either.”yaad nahin, I said”
“Force on an object is directly proportional to the mass of the object and the acceleration of the object”, he said it in near perfect english. “aapne mtech nahin kiya?”
“nahin, mba kiya”
“mba waale toh sirf paisa kamana chahte hain, kaam nahin karte”
“nahin, aisa nahin hai, paisa kamaane ke liye kaam karna padta hai”
He said”arrey, rehene do” or some words to that effect. He didnt think too highly of me apparently anymore.
In a minute we reached our destination. We got off and I told him that he must and should definitely study more, and that I think he is sharp as hell. He took only Rs 30, smiled and began to leave. I got my camera out and said “Raju, ek photo leta hoon tumhari”.
He waved me off, dismissed the idea and rode off before I could say anything more….leaving me feeling high and dry like a spurned lover.

Damn, what a ride that was! India is changing, and changing fast

29 thoughts on “India Is Changing

  1. what a wonderfully unbelievable story. and still, i wouldn’t be surprised if it were true. INDIA is Changing is now a mantra amongst the Young, which is why it it means so much. The older man would say, “The World has changed” because, in his eyes, it sure has, and we get old we’ll be cursing it just as well. But when the youngster is awestruck by such a magnitude of change, surely there’s something seething inside the crust of the Indian Mentality.

  2. a population of 1.2 billion with a internet penetration of 65 million! sure India is changing…with a increase in disposable income and reach of technology to the rural masses, can’t wait to c a better India …

    • Yeah definitely India is changing, I could see everyone cropping up on FB from nowhere…I mean my some uncle whom I can never imagine being on FB,adds me to his frenz list….no wonder India is changing πŸ˜›
      BTW, welcome here,c ya around

  3. Amazing! There is no dearth of talent in our country but it’s a pity that goes waste for the lack of even such basic facilities as college education. And very rightly said, every parent wants their children to become either an engineer or a doctor! This perception is not good.

  4. wow!! That’s just amazing!
    It’s so nice to see such people! It’s positive and it gives one hope amidst all the corruption and the mess we seem to have created..

    Thank you for sharing it Shree πŸ™‚

  5. Wow.. really but then on second thoughts its pity too such clever minds are working so hard to do something in life whereas we are being led by leaders who are criminals and Uneducated …

  6. A friend recommended this read, and trust me i don’t regret it.. This post not only says how India is changing but also at the lack of guidance these intelligent but downtrodden people face. Our country is debating the issue of corruption, i feel we young literates should strongly stand up and change the rules of reservation, it should strictly be based on economic condition of an individual and not the caste, so that such individuals can get educated and do good for themselves and in turn to the country. It takes guts to jot down such reflections, kudos on a job well done.

    • I’m happy to know you found it worth ready welcome to my blog.Im happy to read you liked this article πŸ™‚ yeah there are many issues including caste based reservations which need immediate attention and amendments, which will provide equal opportunity to Talented lot πŸ™‚

  7. Ok I understoood only the opening and ending.. And with the thoda thoda hindi I know, thank God, I didn’t get into his rickshaw, If he would have asked me, Newton’s II law, I would have asked him back, “Oh but who is Newton”. Sigh!!!

    • Hehehhe….so In your case language would be the main barrier πŸ˜‰ But anyway the word,”Newton’s || law” could be easily understood it’s in English πŸ˜› lol at “who is Newton” πŸ˜›

    • Why do you think,it’s not very likely???? I met an autowala a year back,I was amused to know his elder daughter is a Computer engineer with a reputed company in B’lore,second one is lecturer in Pune and son is pursuing Mechanical engineering πŸ™‚

  8. If you have noticed one thing, the ‘Indian educational system’ is based on memorizing and mugging up and IIT’s represent the zenith of such culture. No wonder we end up being the back office of the world. But let us hope that this is the first step to change and innovation and at least after a couple of generations, our kids and grand kids will start innovating.

    Destination Infinity

    • Very true DI, there are basic problems in Indian education system. I don’t remember a word from microprocessor subject which I learnt in college neither I’m using the knowledge I got in college anywhere in my job. In India,if your kid is not Engineer/Doctor they are really not doing great is the basic concept…and that is what is not good .

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