Jul 30, 2010
Two months ago I had taken my daughter to the court premises for submitting an application for a certificate for her which is a must for higher education in Mumbai. We had to stand in queue to enter the room where the applications were being submitted. And there were two queues – for the ‘natives’ of the state and for the ‘others’. We were standing in the ‘others’ queue which was almost ¼ km long.
The place was very congested as the queue was passing through a passage and then through narrow staircases to the ground floor. All the visitors / lawyers were to use the same staircase and so there was not enough space even to stand. And since there was no one to control the queue many people were jumping the line and trying to get their work done.
The queue for the ‘natives’ was very short and they were getting their turn on preferential basis. At times there were no applicants in this queue. We noticed that some of the ‘others' started standing in the queue meant for the ‘natives’. We were in the line since 11 am and at 2.30 pm we were still at some distance from the room.
I was very frustrated at the slow movement of our queue. And when I noticed that there were none in the ‘natives’ line, I decided to be smart. Holding my daughter’s hand I simply crossed over to the other side and in the next moment I was inside the room to submit my application. It hardly took three minutes to submit our application once inside the room.
As soon as we came out of the court premises, my daughter asked me
“Daddy, why did you jump the queue when so many persons are still waiting?
“Arre, otherwise it would have taken another two hours”
“ So what, we could have waited till our turn."
“Why waste so much time"? Besides, many others also jumped the queue."
“It’s not fair daddy,” and what she said next really shook me, “I never expected this from you daddy, I always thought you were a gentleman.”
It took me a few moments to understand her feelings, and I admitted my mistake, “I am sorry beta, I should not have done that.”
“It is all right, but don't do it again please... you know how bad I felt when I looked at the faces of people who were waiting behind us patiently?
At that moment I felt so small in front of her, but I felt proud of my little daughter!