Tuesday, 9 September 2014

The Civil Servant Manifesto

What happens when a civil servant contests elections?
What promises do the civil servants make in their manifestoes?
What is the difference between an agenda and a manifesto?

It is election time at the academy. The good old handpressing, campaigns that promise the moon and canvassing are on. However, the election fever seems to be missing. The PT afflicted OTs seem disinterested in the lures of power. Many posts have gone uncontested. The elections are for posts in the various clubs and societies of the academy.

And there are very many clubs and societies in the academy. For an OT of sound mind and body, these clubs provide ample opportunities to excel at hobbies and extra curricular activities. All Officer Trainees are members by default. 'Nominal' membership fees are deducted. I dread to see my first paycheck after all these deductions.

The class room sessions have now moved from the initial agenda setting to introduction of concepts in law, management, public administration, economics etc. I recall reading these same concepts many years ago. Memories come, if at all, in snatches. However, they have to first cut through thick mists of slumber. Mussoorie weather is more fickle than a woman's mind. It shines brightly one moment and the next it rains. Clouds, in formations enough to give a complex to figure skaters and swimmers, are ever present. The hills and the clouds, they are lovers eternal. Alas! The only clouds the OTs see are the ponderous, impenetrable clouds of sleep! I may have to resort to my favourite solution for stimulation- a cup of steaming hot strong black coffee that sets one's senses abuzz.

The elections have set the group formation in motion, I believe. The proto groups of Mukherjee Nagar, coaching classes, regional, linguistic, service affiliations etc are now coagulating in to thicker groups. People seem to remember names (I am yet to improve in this regard), cribbing points are emerging. Group normation and formation is in process. By the time of the big trek, the batch may have taken a definite shape and character. Let us see.

The civil servant manifestoes seemed curiously unaware of budget constraints. Overall, the canvassing seemed a tame affair, used as I am to intense politicking of the kind seen at KGP and Wimwi. And that is tame compared to the student politics that get played out in colleges in rest of India. Elections to student union bodies at universities in Punjab was a recent issue. There was enough violence and drama involved in these student elections to put to shame any Telugu movie. Court strictures on student elections have been ineffective.

The elections are scheduled for tomorrow. Oh, by the way, yours truly has been elected unopposed to be a member of the journal society. So much for the silly manifesto that I typed in a hurry and shot off in a mail to the entire batch. I should have waited till I had known that no one else was contesting for this obscure post. I would have been spared the embarassment of that manifesto.

1 comment :

  1. Hi kontham,i suddenly bumped into your facebook profile, Glad to know that you have cracked the exam.My heartiest Congratulations friend.!! May you rise high & higher.

    Jeevan Tudu( Hope you remember me )


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