Re: In Out
2010-08-02 03:24:26 GMT
so beautifully written and all that is written is the stark truth- i am using it in IP
I wish we had met. Partha told me you are here sometime on saturday morning - i should have called you up myself.
pl do inform me next time when you come
cheers and warm rgds
Recently during my trip to Pune via Mumbai and back, I had some such firsthand experience of facts which are not only of concern to one and all but also show how much different perspectives people might have exactly on the same set of problems.
I was invited as the President of National RTI Forum at a Seminar in a management Institute by the name of Sadhana, being run by Prof M V Pillai at Poone. For this I went from Lucknow to Mumbai via a flight and came back the same way but luckily I had the opportunity to go Mumbai to Poona and back on cab. And incidentally, on the two routes I had different drivers- one from Maharashtra and one from Bihar.
By habit, I had conversations with both of them. While the initial conversation was general in nature, by curiosity very soon I came to the insider-outsider issue. The person who took me to Poone from Mumbai was a native of Poone. It started with a large number of posters of a prominent politician replete with Birth-day wishes. I asked him what he thought about him. The cab-driver was all praise for him. He said that this person had done a lot for the people from Maharashtra. Then I asked him what he thought about the very large number of people from other parts of the country coming to Mumbai and getting settled down. He replied- “Well, we don’t mind people coming but there is a problem these people are creating.” When further queried, he said that these people are having adverse effect on the labour market. They were willing to work for very lowly amounts. Since they came to get some employment at any cost, they accepted any wage that they could. Thus for a watchman, the monthly rate could be as low as Rs. 2000 to 3000. Moreover these people had no family with them and hence they were willing to remain at the workplace 24 hours, if they got any small place in a corner to sleep. Thus, these people live a wretched life, working day and night. Surely such a thing is adversely affecting the local people, because they can’t work 24 hours, living with their families elsewhere not could they afford to work at such paltry sums. This phenomenon had a very adverse effect on the entire job market, at the lower end.
I saw much logic in what he was saying but when coming back I got another story on the same context. This time the driver was from Darbhanga in Mithila region of Bihar. When asked the same question, he said that it were the local people who were responsible for their plight. If they did not work hard and sincerely, who will keep them in job? After all, many local businessmen and industrialists were preferring the people from outside to the local people. There must be some reason for that. Then he started narrating the contributions made by outsider people in and around Mumbai.
When asked about his own life, he narrated his one day in the following terms-
He had woken up at 3.30 ij the morning, after the daily rituals reached his office at 7 AM, was assigned his job which he went on doing till 10 PM in the night. At that time when he was thinking to get back to his Chawl, he suddenly got an instruction to take a passenger from Airport to Poone. He reached Poone at 3 AM in the night. Slept in the cab for 2 hours. Reached his Poone office at 6 and was told about me to be taken to Mumbai at 11 AM. slept for 3 hours in the office and was now taking me back,. We reached Mumbai at around 4 PM. He would have reported to the office by 5.30 PM and then the decision about his further work would be intimated to him.
The story of the first driver was no different. He was also awake for some 24 hours. And they get a princely sum of Rs. 6000 per month for all this work. In this money, they save a part for their family back home. And if they fall ill and are absent for more than 4 days in a month they don’t get salary for those days. If they are seek for a month or so, they have to take loan from loan-sharks. And it takes nearly 6 months to pay them back. This process goes on forever till the time their life’s journey ends- either through an accelerated natural death or through some violence erupting out of Insider-outsider issue.
Currently at IIM Lucknow