A long silence prevailed in the class as if the dead were waiting to be buried. Our faces were grim with despair. The foul smell of furniture was making ways among our deep thought that engulfed us. The sunshine was bit terrified to enter our class and was watching us from behind the window. Our business communication teacher Mr. Messy had just arrived. With sadness looming large on his face, he dropped the bundle of papers on his table. A smoke of dust arose. It seems that our destinies were trying to escape from that bundle, tightly packed with the jute thread.
He started. “Pathetic English! You people have read throughout your life in convent and your English is as poor as an illiterate. Pathetic English!” We were listening to him as if he was delivering us a fortune full of gemstones in it.
We were facing heat of our test results. These were common during our graduation years (BBM). Since this was the first test we faced, just after joining the course, we were all the more concerned. We were a group of five friends, Mannan Tawa, Hridaydeep Singh Virdi, Tushar Sabhani, Vimal Vyas and I. In our group, Mannan and myself were the only regulars in the class. Hridaydeep and Vimal were late comers and Tushar use to visit once in a while. But that day everyone was on time. We knew that there exist no hope but still to prevent other classmates from knowing our marks, which the teacher usually announce in absence of the student, we all were present.
I was very anxious to read the destiny sealed in those bundles than any other group mate. Hridaydeep was the least bothered. We call him Dikku, name very famous with his relatives. He is a dedicated, charming, humorous guy who takes life as it arrives. He is never worried about his debts, petty issues and other’s opinion of him. His father is in IB (Intelligence Bureau). A very hard working person with humor off his sleeves. Dikku’s mother is a teacher. I believe that she is a perfect mother, very calm, considerate, understanding and social. His sister Komal was the center of attraction when Dikku and she use to converse. I remembered those days, when Dikku bought a computer. As usual he tried his best to refrain his sister from using his computer. He even locked the computer with password. But he lost every time as Komal is far intelligent with technology than Dikku. His family represents a perfect blend of all good words woven in a perfect sentence.
Mr. Messy continued. “I was shocked to see one person writing Hurree! We won the match instead of Hurray! We won the match.” There was a giggle from the other end of the class. We all were seated in the second row, very much in the centre of the class. His looks shivered down my spine. He continued “Look, before I announce the name of that student, I would like to give him a chance. I want him to rise and accept his mistake.”
There stood a graveyard silence. I was thinking how bad it will sound if I raise myself. Suddenly my thinking process changed. I thought why I am blaming myself. I am not that bad with English test. Suddenly I found something rising beside me. Dikku raised his hand in affirmation. He asked “Sir, Did I make that mistake?”
Mr. Messy gave him sharp glance and with all the pain in his heart, he spoke “Aren’t you Hridaydeep Singh Virdi?”
Dikku nodded in affirmation.
Mr. Messy declared: “Yes Mr. Hridaydeep Singh, you are that honorable student. Now please Apni tashreef ka tokra lijiye aur chale jaiye (please carry your heavy baggage of incompetency and leave the class).
Not able to understand his pure Urdu, Dikku asked “Sir! I haven’t bought any tokra (baggage).” Mr. Messy was very furious now. I turned to Dikku and with low voice told him “Dikku, he is asking you to leave the class.” Dikku, stood up and gracefully left the class.
In years to come he became my best friend among all the group mates. I was never happy with his ways as he use to take life so easily. And I believe neither he was with my way of handling even petty things so seriously. In spite of these differences, he stands a very good friend of mine till date. And even after being packed with his office schedule, he drove his bike entire night to reach Udaipur from Ahmadabad (600 Kms) to attend my wedding. No more words to thank him for his friendship.