The Convocation

yesterday i had to attend my convocation. for lack of any direction in career, i had taken up this course. and one year after completing this course, i still feel havent reached to any decision as to where my career is headed.

okay leave that. lets talk about the convocation. i was really excited that the vice president of india is going to do the honours. wow the first feather in my straight life (although it turned out to be a disappointment at the end). when i learnt about it, i called everyone in my family. also told it to many friends. but not many were matching exuberance. even when i told to my eldest brother, he said it wasnt any use since i wasnt putting the degree to any use. anuj too said that he would have been more interested in the certificate than who is presenting it. hey i know that but isnt it really a honour to meet the VP. and given that i got the second rank in my class too can’t be ignored, you see.

okz so though it started off with much excitement, it slowly faded with time. only on saturday i had this urge to prepare for the day. but also there was preparation to be done for deepawali. and there was a tub full of clothes to be washed. even then i found some time to check if the trouser and shirt fitted well. yeah they did. white shirt with vertical stripes and black trousers gave it a more legal kind of feeling. looks like i forgot to tell you what course had i completed. it was a PG diploma in labour laws. so you can now see that i was rightly dressed- formal and more law-ful attire. also thought of complementing it with a coat- but thought otherwise- people would take me for a marketing person.

Murphy’s law at its best – the day you want to reach a place fast, odds against you will outnumber the evens, prevent you from reaching the place on time. at the convocation grounds, we were to reach hours before for the rehearsal (seen nothing as childish in the recent times). much before this we were to come to collect the gowns. the invitation card had it mentioned that the gowns will be available only upto 1 in the noon. and though i had this premonition that people cant be so perfect with time in india, i hurried. first i didnt get a direct bus. then the bus left me fending for another bus for a whole 20 minutes. finally when i catched the bus running at my topmost speed, the bus was caught in a traffic jam. finally i made it to the college just on time.

there was an elaborate arrangement made in the lawns. some media people too had been called. demarcations were made for the guests, judges, faculty, students, etc. PG Diplomas were at the end. i dreaded imagining myself walking all the way to the stage to attend the merit certificates.

putting off the thoughts i hurriedly ran for the gown counter. the gown was this black polythene like fabric complemented with a green scarf. and for this, we had to deposit Rs. 350. (Rs. 50 were hiring charges. the rest was the deposit). people will leave no stone unturned to cleave us of our hard earned money. also they had this studio where they were charging Rs. 100 for a set up photo and Rs. 50 for photos on the stage. since everyone had asked me to get a photo shot for memory, i agreed (which in normal occasions i seldom would have).

by the time i had spotted some people from my class. they werent friends but just knew them by face (not even by name). was searching for digvijay but he hadn’t come. i voiced a sigh of relief when i learnt that we merit holders had seats earmarked for us in the front. thank god; or else i would have surely tripped once or twice in the way.

the first rankholder too was with me. i couldnt have the courage to ask his name, but then i saw it on his chair. also we had this colonel from the army sitting just beside me. he was the second rank holder in the batch next to ours.

in next half an hour a full dress rehearsal was to be organised. i know there was a big dignitary to attend the function. but this isnt school where you can expect sudden behaviour from those who attend. so there was this host who announced the different proceedings. how everyone is to stand for the procession of VP, chief justice of India, etc. stand again for national anthem, stand when names are called. agh that was so childish. i was yawning all through the rehearsal and also during the actual convocation. and though the colonel on my right started off with an erect posture in the beginning, he soon started to follow my yawns and very soon laid relaxingly on the uncomfortable chair. a civilian training a defence person, ha ha.

after the dress rehearsal was over, the thought of spending 2 more hours doing nothing overpowered me. but the time went by. posed for that individual photo. though we weren’t to wear the caps, we were given one. there was also a degree certificate that was rolled and tied with a blue band. manish, who was from our class, had this unique obsession to be photographed. he had this digital camera with him. he asked me to click a photo of his simultaneously. i did, but the photo wasn’t captured. he clicked mine when it was my chance. subsequently he had his photo clicked somehow.

oh i forgot one more thing. during the dress rehearsal itself, i had come to know that the VP won’t be giving us the merit certificates. it was some R. K. Anand. i didnt know him. thought of checking on him in google today but went on with this blogging. also the gold medals were for a select few.

so the principal motivation of recieving the merit certificate from VP was lost. now what. okays would do with this disinterested task just as i do many others.

the convocation turned out to be a very small affair. before the thing was to start, we were presented with the function itinerary,which also included the speeches of the CJI and VP. they were to simply read these out. i dont know why they give a speech then when it is all in written before us.

after the LLMs recieved their degrees, it was our chance. PG Diplomas had some 30 people, 4 each from each laws (two each from 2006 and 2007 batch). we were to line up in the side. that meant i didnt have to walk right at the centre. good for me. i have always been shy about my walking style.

after shiv ram, who scored the first rank, it was my turn. i rushed. Mr. R. K. Anand turned out to be a good person. i didnt know if shaking hand would be proper. but he made the initiative. he also gave that intellectual elderly wallah smile. i was moving after taking my merit certificate when someone from the camera weilding persons asked me to look at them. and then someone clicked the photo. i didn’t know so many media men had come to shoot the event. finally it turned out that they were to sell these photos.

so with me having recieved the certificate, the event had nothing more to look forward to. more speeches, more bowings, more recitation of national anthem. and then the event finally concluded.

the photographer was yet to get the pictures developed. so we headed for the gown counters. deposited those harry potter style gowns and got our Rs. 300 back. high tea was being offered. there were cold pakoras, fruit cakes, sandwiches, and gulab jamun on the menu. i took some pakoras and a cake. i had my eyes on the gulab jamun, which out of propriety i took only one at a time. and while i was planning to take another, it was already out of supply.

got our diplomas. but had to wait for around half an hour before the photos will be available. then while roaming i came across these photograph vendors. they too were selling them for Rs. 50. and here i spotted this good photo of mine taking the merit certificate and watching at the photographer with a smile. rarely has any picture of mine been so good. i immediately purchased this one. he was insisting on buying two but i didnt.

but the sponsored studio wallah had still to get the photos developed. in the meantime, prabhash from aaj tak and our classmate, shot us in his professional camera. he has promised to mail me the pics. manish’s camera had run out of battery. still he shot a few more pics of mine. he told he never retreats on his promises.

shiv ram had left by then. everyone was waiting in the lawns for the pics. and then finally the person came. there was a crowd of people waiting for the photos. everyone wanted his own first. good looking ladies, handsome men, army personnels, everyone. first i thought it to be so childish. but then i too joined the crowd. i finally spotted my studio pic. it looked as if i was from russia. someone i had seen in an old book related to the russian revolution. i was least interested in another pic from the stage. i already had one and was praying that somehow i get a refund, which i got at the end. it so happened that the lot felicitated by R. K. Anand was completely missing. so i got the refund. some happiness at the end. ha ha.

but the day had not ended for me. from here i had to go shop for some dry fruits. but that’s another story. wl talk about that sometime later.


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