An Open Presentation to PM

The Real Fight- Non-Fiction: The Readers not interested in Fiction may see an open representation to PM about corruption in Oil Cos. The Presentation is also embedded below.Details about the fight in the right side column down below. Pl See Why am I a Blogger?
(I may also write occasional articles on this blog for self, friends, Family and Indibloggers on diverse subjects.)

Friday, May 4, 2012

Consolidated Micro-Fiction

The nine micro- fictions posted earlier,links given in the right hand column, have been consolidated here as an ongoing Novel. The future micro fictional articles will also be added here in the ongoing novel.( The readers not interested in the Real Fiction may kindly see the real fight against Corruption by opening the link: An open Presentation to PM. or by going through various links given in the right hand column below the Introduction, 'About Me'.)


                                     Chapter 1                   


                      Promotion-Promotion !! 


In late eighties, Reno , a Manager of a Government Oil Company, and four other Officers though quite senior to Reno but not promoted as ‘Managers’; used to stay in Flats in an LPG Plant in Central India. Reno was official ‘expert’ in ‘LPG’ though he was very new to it having just been transferred and promoted from a POL (Petroleum Oil Lubricants) Depot from North India. 

While the four bachelors stayed without their families; Reno , the most eligible bachelor preferred to stay with a local beauty better known as ‘Butterfly’. Butterfly was actually Mami’s daughter. Like her mother, Butterfly too had a penchant for local hooch known as Santra. And, you know, Mami was attached to the Chief Plant Manager Satak Pal Sen who was an ardent admirer of Mami and Santra both. So, Reno had the official and moral duty to follow his boss in letter and ‘spirit’.

Reno’s favorite hobby, when he was not in the company of Butterfly, was to train the ‘useless, rigid and stagnated’ Officers like Bapurao and his three friends on LPG and other subjects he had mastered through his journey towards this exalted Managerial stardom yet to be achieved by his seniors, now his ‘boys’.

During one of those alcoholic binges, when his house-hold items were done topsy-turvy in absence of his Butterfly, by a few inebriated elements; one ‘useless, rigid and stagnated’ Officer serendipitously discovered and exclaimed that Reno had a magnificent ass whose cheeks weighed 20 kg each. The ass used to bend smoothly by 45 degree angle immediately after seeing Reno’s boss. Reno came to be known as Reno 20W45. (20W40, 15W50 etc. are suffixes used in the nomenclature of Lubricants by the Oil Companies.)

One fine morning LPG leaked profusely and blissfully from Knock-Out Drums of the LPG Plant unto a sparking boiler resulting into a sparkling fire covering even a dome (a Storage Vessel in the shape of Sphere containing LPG).

And when the dome was burning Reno was fondling…

Butterfly heard the loud noise resulting due to huge fire, saw the flames from Reno’s Flat, extricated herself as neatly as she could and started running out of Plant barefoot. Reno gathered his wits and her sandals. Then followed her. The leak was arrested by the ‘useless and rigid’ boys and the fire got extinguished on its own.

Miraculously, the domes were saved...

The Chief Plant Manager Satak Pal Sen reached Plant after one hour. Mami and the daughter disappeared into Bandhu’s dhaba outside the LPG Plant but Reno appeared majestically from somewhere and began to follow him. The inspection went on for 22 minutes and 35 seconds as noted by factotum Tandi, Reno’s attendant and Butterfly’s true lover. There was eerie silence as everybody was struck by the enormity of the situation. Reno’s mind worked overtime before he broke the silence and donated his precious expert views, “Sir, I feel LPG leaked from somewhere.” Wisdom dawned upon everyone and Reno the raconteur explained how bravely he fought the fire.

The useless, rigid and stagnated Officers muttered in unison, “Aasoul!!!”. Reno heard it but magnanimously condoned them for being jealous of his success.

Chief Plant Manager Satak Pal Sen submitted a report to HQO emphasizing that only a small fire broke out in dry grass as a careless Oil Tanker driver passing through adjacent POL Depot approach road threw a live cigarette in Plant Premises. HQO cautioned the Depot Manager and Depot Officers to be careful in future to avoid recurrence of such incidents and commended Reno 20 W 45 for his timely action and exemplary courage. In the following DPC (Departmental Promotion Committee) meeting Reno 20 W 45 was promoted, out of turn, as Senior Plant Manager.


                                             Chapter 2


                     Internal and External Oil Mafia 

                                       Tapri village, made famous for heat and lust by apolaustic Reno and callipygian Butterfly, had three Oil companies: SPCL- Superior Petroleum Corp. Ltd, GPCL-Glorious Petroleum… and NPCL-National Petroleum. Mami, Tandi and  Butterfly were Contractor /Transporter Topi Pissoo’s employees. Mami and Topi Pissoo had worked in all three Companies since the time the companies were owned by the Americans and the British.

Many Taprians, like most Indians, were incurably attracted towards white skinned women. Butterfly was the White legacy of the past. But nobody knew about the type of legacy- Superior, Glorious or National?  Mami never revealed who he was - A British or an American. Officially Butterfly was owned by Reno, whatever Tandi may be claiming boastfully about his passionate triumphs.

Bapu and his friends used to play Gilli Danda, oblivious to Tapri, with local youth just outside LPG Plant in an open field on Sundays. On such a Sunday morning, Reno and Butterfly were serenely enjoying rain dance in the thick green belt, beneath the perpetually leaking overhead tank constructed by Topi Pissoo.

At the same time, beguiling  Mami went on a Special duty,  ‘on SPCL duty’ , for two days and one night to a nearby City with crapulous Satak Pal Sen, Chief Plant Manager, in a white ambassador sponsored by Topi Pissoo; who had got all his Tank-Trucks/Jeeps/Cars  painted with the caption ‘On SPCL duty’. The moment the ambassador car, carrying the Grand Ambassadors of SPCL, left Civilization behind; Satak and Mami also left the garb of civilities behind.

Chabi, a philosopher and the driver, was now wide awake to record the proceedings. Satak noted after some time that Chabi was ogling at them through the rear mirror. Satak went berserk. He spat tobacco and spouted ‘C’ rated English abuses learnt from his Phirangi bosses through his  serrated teeth in a spectacular style that could be bettered successfully only by Reno.  Of course Reno deserved to be promoted, Chabi pondered while tilting the mirror, now concentrating only on the sounds…

While ‘on SPCL duty’; Mami did not have any job in the day time in that City. So she decided to meet the legendary Suren Chor, her first cousin and No.  1 Pick-pocket of the region.  Fortunately, Suren Chor was neither on ‘tour’ nor in ‘Sarkari Guest House’. Mami explained about the abundance of Oil in Tapri, her connections with Satak / Topi Pissoo and Butterfly’s connection with Reno. Aging Suren Chor liked it.
Mami returned home with Satak. Suren Chor followed the very next day with two of his brightest disciples Changu and Mangu. All three of them were now ‘on SPCL duty’.

Suren Chor took the blessings from Darogaji (Police Inspector- Tapri) and Topi Pissoo. Changu and Mangu started learning fast from Techno Tandi about Petroleum products. Within a month Suren Chor established his business outside the Depots and LPG Plant. He just organized all 10 to 15 small operators under one umbrella-Tapri Petroleum Company-the TPC.

Changu was in charge of the Railway Siding behind the Depots / LPG Plant from where his team used to ‘cut’ the products from Pipelines and Railway wagons. Mangu was responsible to ‘cut’ products from tankers of all the Oil companies leaving the Depots situated in a row on a Highway. The drivers of the tankers were thrilled; their ‘cut’ was sold right in front of the Depots!

Suren Chor first opened his Office and Sales Counter behind Bandhu’s dhaba .The sales zoomed beyond expectations due to the price differential and Suren Chor’s marketing skills. He opened another Outlet, on the eve of Republic day, just in front of LPG Plant’s Officers Residential Complex on the Highway. Within a month, daily Sales Volume of TPC reached 4000 litres of various Products.

Bapu, the Safety Engineer, was the only person who had problems with this arrangement in front of his flat. He could see the empty and filled oil cans of various sizes in different colors swaying to and fro for the whole day. Bapu complained to Reno and Satak. They scolded him to mind his own business. He complained to the Depot Managers of all oil companies too. But they refused to do any thing as the illegal activities, according to them, were taking place outside their respective Depots.

After a few weeks, he wrote letters to SPCL HQO. Sent several reminders. No body responded. Dejected, he approached Darogaji to lodge an FIR. Darogaji refused to accept the complaint as it was not signed by Depot Manager or Chief Plant Manager.

Furious Darogaji informed Satak about the audacity of Bapu to contact him. Contumelious Satak fulminated hysterically,” Boss is always right, Boss is always right, Boss is always right…”.

Coming to senses at last, he called Reno and explained to him about the scandal- an Officer going against the wishes of Satak! Reno was devastated, such a betrayal by his own subordinate! Tandi, Mami and Butterfly were summoned. Satak winked at Mami. Mami left the room like a ghost and reached Bandhu’s Dhaba. Suren Chor called Mangu. Mangu executed the plan perfectly.

Several bones in legs, hands, face and ribs broken; Bapu was rushed to a hospital in a very critical state by compassionate Reno and others. The news spread like today’s Kolaveri D. Khajulal, CMD-SPCL, humanitarian Buddy Noora- Director Personal, Shekhar Raj- Director Marketing all came to know about the incidence. Emotional Buddy Noora directly instructed  Satak to ensure that Bapu survives.

( Bapu used to ask his friends if vegetarians eat vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat!?)

Buddy Noora, the humanitarian thought, it was a big crisis for SPCL. An Officer showing disrespect to all important Hierarchy. It was a Corporate blasphemy not to worship the bosses. An Officer trying to lodge an FIR! It was a severe crime of insubordination and bringing the good name of great SPCL to disrepute. Such an Officer had to be taught a lesson so that no Officer could ever dare to take such negative actions in future. Bapu had to be charge-sheeted for others to see.  So Bapu had to survive first.

Suren Chor, his team, drivers, transporters and many others celebrated the victory. Mangu was hailed as the much needed ‘Mafia’ for the community. Now he was known as Mangu ‘Mapia’. The Sales of TPC jumped to 7000 litres per day after Mangu Mapia’s great strike.

Satak instructed Reno to prepare a cyclostyled letter to all employees of SPCL about the great betrayal by Bapu. Reno complied and letters to all 9000 employees in the Country were sent the very next day.

Khajulal, Buddy Noora, Shekhar Raj and all other big shots decided to have a meeting at Tapri the very next week to correct the situation. In any case they had to attend Topi Pissoo’s son’s marriage. Now they had an excuse to visit Tapri together. Topi Pissoo was delighted!



                 File Note to Pile Currency Note 


Satak, the Chief Manager, and Reno the Senior Manager were eternally grateful blokes. Appreciating Topi’s services, they decided to have yet another massive Overhead tank constructed by 'Topi Pissoo Mehta’ the Contractor. Approval to construct the tank on single quotation basis was not a problem. SPCL had a beautiful, dutiful   system of generating ‘File Notes’ so as to ‘pile notes’ with impunity. 

A blank ‘File Note’ is  a thick sheet with several dotted lines on which thick-skinned bosses sign to hilariously justify some utterly unjustifiable actions like: out of turn promotions/transfers, placement of Orders on single quotation basis on exorbitantly higher rates,  enhancement of Kerosene Quota in cities where no body uses kerosene, reconstitution/resitement/appointment/termination of dealerships , writing off huge stock losses/bad debts in hundreds of Crores, relaxation in payment terms for big industrial houses including famed Airlines, sending chosen Officers to Europe for training in LPG Operations in India, reimbursement of air travel / hotel expenses of Ministry Officials, purchase of expensive gifts for various Govt. Agencies etc etc…

Topi sponsored bosses’ air travel and the five star hotel stay in Nachpur, the district headquarters of Tapri village. (Bosses got the bills reimbursed from SPCL also and pocketed the money matter of factly, without evincing any trace of eructation...) Topi arranged a lavish party in bosses’ favorite and an exclusive nude Cabaret Joint- Bhogi Bar-pride of Nachpur District, frequented by Politicians, Govt. Servants and desi Oil magnates.

The file note to construct the Overhead tank was originated by Reno, recommended by Satak and handed over to Topi for taking the approval from the bosses. Topi gave the File Note to Shanno, the star performer of Bhogi Bar and darling of the bosses. Shanno, Julie, Gulbadan and many others arrived, performed and pleased the bosses as planned by Topi, Satak and Reno. 

Shanno, the ecdysiast, finally showed her designer ‘latke-jhatke’; covering her coveted body with only a 'file note'. Accustomed to these desi Oil Magnates, she too knew how to pile currency notes from file notes. She ensured that nobody touched her before signing on the File Note. The bosses sitting in the innermost ring appreciated the game of ‘paper strip’ teasing .They first stylishly threw the notes, sponsored by Topi, on Shanno. Then, they attacked on the file note granting their approvals hurriedly without looking at the body of the File Note. But, the other body in question did not escape their probing eyes & hands…

Satak, Reno and Topi, sitting in the middle ring were harmoniously singing just released the then Doordarshan Hit, “Mile Sur Mera Tumhara …” to the every step taken by Shanno, Julie and Gulbadan.

The knowledgeable audience of SPCL Officers sitting on the periphery appreciated Topi Pissoo Mehta by singing:  ‘Jai Mehta Di, Jai Mehta Di!’. As the chorus gained momentum, Shanno and other dancers started enchanting the bosses with their plastic love. Excited and ecstatic bosses also started chanting sacredly in mesmerized tones: ‘Jai Mehta di, Jai Me’ta di!’. 

Mighty thrilled Topi thanked his stars and roared most religiously, as was his wont: “Jai Mata di!”. 

The SPCL community reverberated heartily: “Jai Me’ta di!”.



                       Scam-Dev and Scam-ayani

Bapu was still in Hospital, though out of danger now. He had also been invited for the Party. But Bapu, the ‘arrogant traitor’, chose comforts of the hospital to the ‘spiritual’ luxury of Bhogi Bar! In SPCL, all Parties involving “Spirits and  Salsa" by Sirens  used to be called ‘Spiritual Parties’. 

As per the procedures of SPCL, he should have informed the bosses in writing about his inability to attend the meeting. As such, the Party at Bhogi Bar was an Official Review Meet of all Officers (around 50) of SPCL Tapri Complex! Satak and Reno were thrilled that Bapu could now be easily served a Charge Sheet against ‘Insubordination and unauthorized absenteeism’ for not attending the Party/meeting!

Tired but gratified bosses after the action-packed night at Bhogi Bar spent the next day shopping, discussing about Shanno et al; and attending the all important Topison’s marriage. 

Meanwhile, Satak and Reno were in Office preparing for the meeting to take place the very next day where the only item in the agenda was: the enemy no.1 of SPCL- Bapurao alias Bapu. Satak was hysterical as usual and was shouting –“Bapu is a stupid and frustrated fellow! Boss is always right, Boss is always right…” 

Reno 20 W 45 eagerly bowed down by 45 degrees and pleaded Satak to just calm down. And then to please his boss Satak, Reno magically brandished Bapu’s bright orange diary; which was stolen the previous night from Bapu’s flat by Team Techno Tandi under the able guidance of Miss Butterfly Reno 20 W 45.

Satak really calmed down and even smiled seeing the diary. Now he could read Bapu’s mind! They started reading a short article written by Bapu in his diary with a heading ‘Scam-ayani’. Bapu had referred in the article: Satak as Scam-Dev, Mami as Scam-ayani, Reno as Scam-Putra, Butterfly as Scam-ya, Shekhar Raj as Scum –Dev, , File Notes as Scam-Sutra, official meetings as Scam-Kreeda and other bosses variously as Scamsters, scammers, scamps,  scam -uck etc on the lines of Hindi words Kamdev, Kamsutra, Kamayani,Kamuk etc.

After reading the article, Satak, yet again went berserk. ‘Satak Satak gaya’ so to say in Hindi. He started scam-pering in his room frantically. So, now, Reno too had to scam-per incessantly; following his boss bit by bit. Within no time Satak was shouting in stentorian tones: –“Bapu is stupid …! Boss is always right…”.This time Reno just could not come to grips with Satak so he had to dash away calling out Mami. 

Mami entered into the room and Satak into tranquility. Reno preferred to spend rest of the day in his flat with Butterfly. Satak kept on shouting at regular interval and Mami continued to sedate him in her own Scam-ayani manner.

Late in the night Satak and Reno attended the marriage. But here too, after seeing Bapu’s three friends, Satak went crackers. Every time he saw those three, he became frenzied and started shouting. Shekhar Raj would just lift his right hand and Satak will go noiseless. The game went on till the dinner was over.

After the dinner, when all the guests, lesser Officers of SPCL and even the Topi’s family members had gone; Topi Pissoo and the drunken Grand Ambassadors of SPCL gathered around the pool. CMD Khajulal was continuing to drink Bloody Mary and eat Kaju (Cashew nuts) well one hour after the dinner. By now, his mouth was looking like famous ugly grease Plant of SPCL in a coastal town.

Out of the blue, Khajulal jumped in the pool and started swimming fully dressed without stopping to eat Kaju. All others followed the action without wasting even seconds. Topi Pissoo Mehta Shouted devotedly: “Jai Maata Di!”. The whole swimming pool erupted faithfully and unfailingly: “Jai Me’ta di”.

                                             Chapter 5 


                    Cosmic dance by a comic dunce .


Within a month of operation of TPC ( Tapri Petroleum Company), Suren Chor had earned a second hand tank-truck from Topi Pissoo, the President of Nachpur District Tank Truck Owners-Drivers- Cleaners Association. Suren Chor was made the Secretary of the association and Mangu Mapia was designated Treasurer. Changu was no where in the reckoning.

Mangu Mapia had already started collecting Rs 20=00  from every Tank Truck driver for every trip made in any of the Depots; in his holy bid to protect their birthright to cut the petroleum products from all the tank trucks and Depots. 

By now, Changu had started feeling left out by Suren Chor and Mangu Mapia.  Chabi, a philosopher and also Pissoo’s driver was getting closer and closer to Changu. Chabi wanted to remain a Tank Truck driver for ever but Pissoo promoted him as a Car driver considering Chabi’s intellect. Chabi wanted money, not status. Thus, Chabi’s plan to become rich quick was shattered brutally by Pissoo. 

The Association painted the whole Tapri red in honor of CMD and Directors. All association members were neatly clad in new white Kurta Pajama purchased by themselves. Gandhi Topis (Caps) were provided by Topi Pissoo, obviously! They had also constructed a stage just outside LPG Plant to felicitate the SPCL bosses gratefully; for having facilitated them to cut the products from Depots with impunity despite Bapu’s written complaints. 

Since morning, the loud speaker had started playing patriotic songs at full volume. Topi, the patron, was humming constantly- ‘Mile Sur Mera Tumhara’. Suren Chor was singing most patriotically- ‘Mere desh ki Dharti ugle Petrol Diesel...’. 

Mangu Mapia was high on Bhang (Cannabis sativa) and was playing ‘holi’ with himself and the Drivers / cleaners since morning. He did not stop dancing and singing for Suren Chor even for a moment. It was like a cosmic dance by a comic dunce for a chronic dense; savored by all.

At the same time, Changu started moving surreptitiously towards Chandpur; the other end being Nachpur. He had a five liter Oil can in his hand, when he was last seen.  

The Caravan of 15 cars, carrying three bosses, reached Tapri at 11.30 A.M as they got delayed because of salutation at every Petrol Pump enroute. Suren Chor and Mangu Mapia presented a memorandum about the problems created by Bapu and his three friends in the name of Safety for not only the LPG plant’s Tank Truck drivers but also for the Petrol/Diesel drivers working in the adjacent Oil Depot.

Topi also submitted a memo regarding his long pending bills against several constructions in LPG Plant not cleared by Bapu; despite clear instructions given by Reno and Satak. Shekhar Raj and humanitarian buddy Noora, on behalf of Khajulal, assured Topi that such indiscipline will not be tolerated.

As the bosses were about to enter into the Plant; there was a huge explosion just outside LPG plant at Chandpur end. Consequently, the dry grass out side the Plant caught fire and the flames reached up to the height of fifty feet. The flames continued to erupt threatening to enter into the LPG Plant and Depots. There was utter pandemonium on the stage. Wooden stage, constructed by Topi at the cost of SPCL, collapsed and all hell broke loose. 

Mami and Butterfly, not on the stage, rushed to Bandhu’s dhaba. Suren Chor and Mangu Mapia ran in the direction of Chandpur, in search of Changu.

Except Chabi, all drivers of Tank Trucks and 15 cars ran in the direction towards Nachpur. Chabi seemed to be mentally prepared for the accident. He was standing just near his car. He hopped into the car hurriedly and began to honk the horn hard and hysterically to help holy honchos reach at hotel hastily. Topi and the bosses heroically got up on their feet and got themselves deposited in the Ambassador Car. 

Heavy-weights gone, Satak Pal Sen started running from one end of the main gate of 50 ft length to the other end without entering into the Plant. Throughout he was shouting – Fire! Fire!! Fire!!! Reno was following Satak inch by inch and decibel by decibel. This continued for ten minutes though the fire got extinguished on its own within 7 -8 minutes.

Chabi dropped them into the Hotel in Nachpur -15 Kms away from Tapri. A message for them was awaiting- The fire had already been extinguished. The Manager of the Hotel informed them that two journalists were also waiting for them to enquire about some fire in Tapri. Humanitarian Noora, the more intelligent among them, realizing the problem, dropped Topi at the Hotel to sort out the journo and ordered Chabi to immediately rush back to Tapri....


                                            Chapter 6


                                  Scam Kreeda


The meeting, the Scam-Kreeda, finally started at Tapri at 3 O’clock after lavish lunch en-route. Satak continued to chew tobacco and ruminate while looking furtively at Mami peeping from the nearby window. Mami was looking at Noora, Noora was looking at Khaju, and Khaju was more interested in eating Kaju. But Reno had to sacrifice Butterfly and his spit before he could start the show.

“Dear friends, time has come to choose to be an   Aasoul or a wet blanket like Bapu. If you want to play Golf with us, choose to be an Aasoul. If you wish not to grow and continue playing ‘Gilli danda’; follow the dirty path chosen by Bapu. If you want to believe that Satak sir is a pompous jerk, brash, conceited, apolaustic,devoted to lord Bacchus, an imposter, a womanizer and what not; you may think so. But look at our great corporate history; all successful bosses have evinced the same characteristics! And the Corporation has only progressed! To some rigid, useless and negative Officers; Satak Sir may be just an Aasoul. But our bosses have highest regard for him, for he is the face of the Company. If negative people want to call me Aasoul, I take it as a complement because all my successful superiors are like that only. And I am proud of them.”

Shekhar rose up to deliver his speech. “Corporation is giving you Salary, Perks and all ‘facilities’, you need not think beyond Company. There are Officers who talk about Country and countrymen, though they take salary from this company! We do not need such ‘arrogant traitors’! Here at local level Satak and Reno are doing a great job. Satak at 45 is the Present and Reno at 30 is the future of the Company. You all should support them. Thinking about what is good for Country is none of your business.”

Now it was the turn of the learned, intelligent and emotional, humanitarian Buddy Noora to inform about the roll out of the future HR Programs of SPCL. “I fully concur with Reno... I should say that it was a bold and great Aasoulian logic to covey the simple underlying philosophy of the Corporate World in general and Oil Sector in particular. 

“We emphatically   intend to start a centre of learning on the abstract subject of ‘Aasoulian Intelligence’ so that other Corporate, especially Oil Companies, world wide are also benefitted. I am going to have detailed discussion with Reno how to develop the subject of Aasoulian Intelligence for which we will soon begin with a project tentatively named APE. We are also going to fund for research in this pioneering field with the premier Management Institutes of the World.

“Regarding Bapu, we are going to serve him a Charge Sheet against ‘Insubordination and unauthorized absenteeism’ tomorrow itself through Reno. As far as his three indisciplined friends Tej, Kola and Vira are concerned, we are only transferring them to NE, North Zone and South Zone far away from their residences as per the Section 17.6.1 of the Transfer Policy according to which a transfer can take place any time any where at the discretion of the Management of SPCL.

We have issued them warning letters. They have accepted their grave mistake of being Bapu’s friend. They have also given in writing that they will never be associated with the ‘traitor’ in future. That’s all from HR point of view.” 

Satak hinted all Officers to leave. Now only the bosses, Satak, Reno and lowly learned, certificates accumulator, rain coat wearing, tobacco chewing, Machiavellian Bean Counter cum HR Officer Pujya Doshi were left. There were a few File notes to be signed for the betterment of the Corporation and the Country. They all signed merrily on the File Notes to pile notes…

Topi called from Hotel and informed Satak that he had taken care of the journalists and that he had arranged an action packed ‘Spiritual’ party at Bhogi’s Bar in the evening inviting the Journos also so as to ensure that SPCL does not earn negative publicity. Satak Pal Sen began to pirouette.

As Topi was not around, so Reno shouted religiously- Jai Maata di!! The bosses had a hearty laughter …!!!


                                           Chapter 7 


                   A dancing pro becomes a P.R.O. 


Around 6:30 PM, the Caravan of 15 cars began to return to Nachpur from Tapri; at last in a style befitting the desi Oil Magnates of SPCL. Noora ordered Reno to go to Bhogi’s with only Topi. 

The Bosses   chose to return to the Hotel. Satak was quite disheartened to have missed yet another chance to go to Bhogi’s. Noora could not trust the Journo …

The ‘Spiritual Party’ at Bhogi’s started   around 7.00 PM without bosses. Shanno, the ecdysiast, was at her best and was performing with a new found fervor. Shekhar, through Reno, had promised her a job of Public Relations Officer (P.R.O.) in a subsidiary of SPCL in Bombay (Now, Mumbai) only if she could extract the name of the person who informed the Journo about the Fire Fiasco at Tapri. This was a life time opportunity for Shanno to extend her business in Bombay. She could not afford to miss it.

She drove the Journo crazy in her intense bid to know the name of the person. The Journo wanted favors in return. They went on haggling. Finally a deal was struck. Reno came to know that the informer was local Union leader DM Yadu.

Once the name was disclosed, Shanno and Reno left Bhogi Bar in a hot haste. Before leaving, Reno the philanthropist whispered to the Journo that it was not de rigueur for them to be dead to donate their organs. The journo understood and appreciated the theory and assured to apply and propagate it further as Reno's theory

And then, a highly motivated team of Gulbadan, Julie and many more besieged the Journo as a part of the sanctified deal. 

Here at the Hotel, a pall of gloom was still pervading despite their gulping down several pegs of Santra, the local hooch, so lovingly arranged by steatopygian Mami for dear Satak. (Johnny walker –Black label a hit of that era was also arranged for the bosses by the bosses at SPCL expenses. But they preferred to deposit the same in their luggage respecting the austerity measures initiated by the Govt. of India and Ministry of Petroleum a few months back.) 

Noora kept on thinking philosophically about ‘Aasoulian Intelligence’ to be applied in HR matters of SPCL. Khajulal continued to do most efficiently what he had been doing for the last three days. Satak resumed to go Satak, as usual. Shekhar persisted to raise his right hand to nurse Satak, every ten minutes.

Reno and Shanno arrived at the Hotel by 9 O’clock. Reno heroically announced the name of the new enemy of SPCL- D.M.Yadu. Humanitarian Noora dictated to Reno the content of the charge-sheet to be given to Yadu. 

Now, the mood of the room changed dramatically. Shekhar congratulated Shanno for becoming a PRO. The pro was now proud to be a PRO. Noora handed over a letter of appointment. Shanno smiled and said coyly -'Jai Maata di!' This electrified the atmosphere .The bosses smiled and salivated copiously…

Shanno went back to Bhogi Bar, as a part of the consecrated deal, for the last time. Bosses left for the Airport. A short three days and two nights package at the cost of SPCL  had to come to an end because the bosses had utmost respect for the austerity measures announced by the Govt. of India.

(Noora had gone but the concept of ‘Noora Kushti’, as a new Management theory, had arrived. You have to have Aasoulian Intelligence to understand Noora Kushti. More about these sacred Management Theories in future...)


                                    Chapter 8 


                    Biking-An urge to surge ahead 


Biking may mean differently to different people but essentially, it is just an urge to surge ahead; for good or bad. Whether a biker is a young one, a pick-pocket, Oil Mafioso or a Spiritual Baba; the urge remains the same. There was no dearth of this holy urge in Tapri Oil Complex too. Internal and External Oil Mafia- all of them were into bikes and biking; predominantly because of free availability of petrol for them at Tapri Oil Complex.

For Reno, the Hero, biking meant an urge to merge with Butterfly on his bike in Tapri Forest or on any wide open highway. For oldie Satak Pal Sen biking was quite nostalgic. It reminded  the urge to splurge in ‘Santra & Soda with Mami’ in good old halcyon days of erstwhile American Oil Company; on Nachpur Roads full of pot holes. Every pot hole had bestowed him an opportunity to come spiritually closer to the pillion lady Mami. 

Suren Chor had an Enfield (Bullet) which, years ago, he had to reluctantly lift from Kumbh Mela at Haridwar, after pick-pocketing a rich devotee; to survive an imminent attack from a chasing Police Party.Now, he had brought the heavily made over Bullet to Tapri in his new avatar as an Oil Mafia king. 

Suren Chor, the biker, loved to compare himself with MF Hussain the painter, as they both were discalced i.e. they walked barefoot. According to him, both of them were ‘finger artists’. Suren Chor always boasted that he was a better artist, as Hussain could never indulge in biking barefoot on Indian streets. Moreover, he felt superior that his art was instantly rewarding. He also believed that it was birthright of every pick-pocket to excel in biking as both the arts required sophisticated fingers-hand-eye coordination. 

Just after the fire broke outside LPG Plant, Suren Chor and Mangu Mapia had started to run behind disgruntled Changu who, at the behest and instance of Topi Pissoo’s car driver Chabi, had set the fire outside Tapri LPG Plant. (As Changu was neglected by Suren Chor and Mangu Mapia; he wanted to embarrass them in front of SPCL bosses from HQO. Chabi had a grudge against his promotion by Topi as a car driver. Obviously Chabi was much better off financially as a Tank Truck Driver.)

Aging Suren Chor could run barely a few meters and caved in. Mangu ran in reverse direction to reach at Bandhu’s dhaba to pick his bike. By now, Darogaji too had reached there on his bike. Darogaji chose to follow disgruntled Changu, leaving his Police Party to systematically supervise the already extinguished fire. Incidentally, the extinguished fire was yet again extinguished one hour later by Nachpur Fire Brigade.

Suren Chor, lying supine, saw Changu emerging from the nearby cotton-fields to board a bus towards Chandpur. Within a minute Darogaji and Mangu Mapia arrived. Suren Chor sat at the pillion of Darogaji. The bikers were now on the verge to surge ahead to purge Changu’s dissension forever.

They did not take much time to overtake the bus. Changu was forced to get down form the bus and was taken to interior of Tapri forest. Suren Chor, the mentor of Changu and Mangu, now had to discipline Changu. No benevolence could be expected from Oil Mafia against such a crime of betrayal. 

Changu was beaten dreadfully by three of them. He immediately revealed the name of Chabi as his accomplice. Now, they competed with each other in riding the two bikes over Changu’s body and face. His whole body was desperately flattened and mutilated. The lethal game continued for two hours. Finally, Mangu Mapia took out petrol from fuel tank of his bike and set the dead body afire. 

While returning, Darogaji and Suren Chor began to sing “Ye dosti hum nahin todenge” on Darogaji’s bike in Jai-Veeru-Sholey style! Mangu Mapia smiled wryly. This was the song Changu and Mangu had been singing for the past five years in front of their boss Suren Chor! Mangu, probably, wanted to sing a dirge for Changu, but ultimately the urge to surge ahead prevailed.

By the time they returned, Chabi had left Tapri to drop the bosses at the Hotel. Darogaji could not spare more time for second ‘thrilling biking exercise’ despite having an urge…  

He requested Suren Chor and Mangu Mapia to go behind Chabi right away. The second chase of the day had begun. The power bikers were now on prowl…

Chabi had to be taught a lesson for the Oil Mafia to survive at Tapri. But Chabi was no Changu!


                                            Chapter 9


             An eternal urge to emerge as a winner. 


Chabi was son of a rich farmer in Chamoli region of UP Hills, now a part of Uttarakhand. His father wanted him to be an engineer. Chabi too was very much interested in automobiles and biking. While he could not be selected in a Govt. Eng. college in UP, his father ensured to send him in a Private Engineering College in Central India by paying a huge Capitation fees as per the prevailing trend in late eighties.

For Chabi life just meant biking. No body was interested to know his real name. He always had his bike keys (Chabi) in his hands so his friends started calling him Chabi. He was also known as Chamoli biker. The short form was again Chabi. In fact, his chubby cheeks also justified this name. 

He scrupulously enjoyed his life, mostly about biking, in the College without being interested in academics. Though he was intelligent and knowledgeable, finally he had to leave college without completion of degree. Soon his father disowned him. As an engineering college drop out, first of all he started as a bike-mechanic being a bike aficionado. But that was not enough to meet his expenses. 

While repairing bikes of Oil mafia of Tapri, he realized it was a great idea to be a Tank Truck driver to enhance his otherwise languishing career. He managed to impress Topi Pissoo, the Contractor Cum Transporter of SPCL. Topi liked him and made him driver. He remained driver of a Tank truck for three years. Within a year he had purchased a second hand Yamaha and now had enough money to survive for several months.

Topi’s daughter Kammo was very much attracted to Chabi’s pleasing personality, his bike and his biking attitude. She thought Chabi was too sophisticated to be a Tank Truck driver. Hence Chabi was promoted as a Car driver which Chabi dissented to a great extent. While Chabi also liked her, the love story could never start due to Chabi’s lack of enterprise.

Chabi had come to know that Suren Chor, Darogaji and Mangu Mapia had gone bike chasing in search of Changu. He knew the meaning of this bike chase.

He dropped the SPCL bosses at their hotel, parked the car at hotel leaving the keys in the car itself and rushed to his one room house in an auto without waiting for a Cycle rickshaw. He collected his valuables in a bag and kick-started his Yamaha bike to leave Nachpur for good.

He had just accelerated the bike when he saw Mangu Mapia and Suren Chor approaching him from behind on Mangu’s bike. They were only fifty meters behind him. He wanted to maintain at least that distance till he could reach the highway.

He maneuvered his bike adroitly through the crowd at a great speed. Mangu was no inferior in this game. Still Mangu was not able to reduce the distance. Within no time they were on highway. 

Chabi knew both the bikes were powered by the stolen Petrol from SPCL depot at Tapri. But there was a huge difference. Mangu’s bike was powered by stolen ‘SE grade’ PSU Engine Oil from Tapri. On the contrary Chabi’s bike was rather ‘empowered’ by a much better ‘SF grade’ of a private lubricating Oil company; which was the best available Lubricant grade at that time.  Soon, it became one sided race. The distance between both the bikes went on increasing.

Still Chabi was petrified. He did not even dare to look back for the first two hours, though Mangu had stopped chasing him after first twenty Kilometers only. 

For Chabi, now biking meant just an urge to emerge as a survivor.

Chabi drove for the whole evening and stopped at a very famous and crowded dhaba on the National Highway leading from Nachpur to UP around 1-00 AM.  He got the bike tank filled by purchasing petrol for the first time in last three years and slept for four hours at the dhaba amidst a large no. of drivers and cleaners sleeping on the Charpais (Wooden and jute beds).

He got up early in the morning in an effervescent mood and began to bike singing the song originally sung by John Denver- ‘Country roads take me home’. He had heard it in college days from friends. He always ensured to change ‘Shenandoah River ’with ‘Alakhnanda River’ in his version. As Haridwar was approaching fast, he began to sing Garhwali and Hindi songs glorifying mountains and holy rivers.

Once he passed Rishikesh, he began to wonder about the wastage of biking time in Central India. For him the Mountain biking was a rediscovery. The more he biked and sang the songs, more nostalgic he became. He soon realized mountain biking comes in package including: Mountain rivers, vegetables, specialty fruits, panoramic vistas of snow clad mountains, blooming Rhododendron (Buransh in Hindi), meandering roads, Garhwali- Kumauni Cuisine, songs-music, festivals, Mountain fragrance etc. Overwhelmed by the new experience, Chabi finally decided to become a Baba- ‘Chabi wale Baba’ without deciding the exact place of settlement in UP-Hills.

The whole episode turned his biking philosophy to a higher degree. Now, Biking was not just Biking but was Mountain Biking with an eternal urge to emerge as a Champion.

( More about Chabi, Kammo, Topi and other characters associated with Chabi in the future articles.)


                                         Chapter 10


             'Flash' Players and 'Flesh' Players of eighties

On that eventful day, when Changu conducted fire-raising ceremony outside LPG Plant in his endeavor to be a shining star like Mangu Mapia, but could manage to become only a dead star; a lot of curious events took place inside LPG Plant also. 

The life of Workers/Officers was quite normal despite the bosses’ arrival at Nachpur. Almost all of them were on duty without Uniform.The Local Union leader DM Yadu, dressed in broken white Kurta Pajama and a sparkling white Gandhi cap, was issuing sermons against Corruption by Satak/Reno and also about lack of Safety arrangements in the Plant. Nobody was listening to him; as usual. They had much better things to do.

Half of them were busy playing 'Flash' (card game) or Carom in the Canteen, as usual. Three of them were fully drunk and were sleeping on the floor at canteen, just behind the ‘Flash’ Players. The more important ‘Flesh’ Players like Satak, Mami, Reno and Butterfly were busy outside the Plant. Reno 20W45 had strategically deployed Techno Tandi, the ‘Flesh’ Player, inside the Plant. 

Michael and Raje were joking, poking around in gay abandon. The shift clerk, before making the Invoice, was haggling with a truck driver who was not willing to give more than Rs. 10 for a lucrative trip. A worker responsible to unload bulk LPG from LPG tankers was not willing to release the tanker without getting Rs. 100 from the driver. So the situation was quite normal. Snafu.

The oldies, having completed their eight hour job in one hour, were singing Bhajans in the far end of the filling shed, far away from Canteen / Administrative Block; using the new empty cylinders as Ghatam and Tabla –- Radhe! Radhe!! Younger ones were watching pornographic albums behind the stacks of cylinders – Babe! Babe!! 

The younger ones had gratefully collected the albums from generous Tandi who received the bonanza from Butterfly. Those albums were the precious gifts from Reno20W45 to beloved Butterfly. Reno had inherited just a part of this huge ‘property’ from Satak Pal Sen. Satak had painstakingly accumulated the treasure , Black and white and color albums on glossy expensive sheets; from various dealers, transporters, contractors, suppliers of SPCL over a period of two decades. He had only parted with the duplicate ones to his dear and worthy disciple Reno.

These honest workers were not claiming any over time expenses for such activities being done during duty time. A few LPG Operators while sitting/squatting on LPG cylinders, were over-filling/under-filling the cylinders on the carousel (the machine on which cylinders are filled); without really bothering about Tare weight or Gross Weight of Cylinders. Satak and Reno could terrorize the Officers at will but not the permanent Workers of SPCL.

In any case, Production was more important to Satak, Reno and their bosses. Stock loss was never an issue in SPCL, but ‘Satak Loss’ was a huge issue for one and all in Tapri. 

Tata Steels used to assert in their famous and charming advertisement in the late eighties- ‘We also make Steel’, in Hindi: ‘Ispat bhi hum banate hein’. The proud workers of SPCL LPG Plant also used to articulate the same sentiments without any fear of plagiarism: ‘We also fill Cylinders’. [So what if the cylinders were half filled, overfilled or defective?]

Contractors’ labor were doing Permanent workers’ tedious jobs like handling of filled, empty and defective Cylinders. They were also catering to the needs of all permanent Workers/Officers. One of them was assigned the job of cooling drinking water. (There were no coolers for workers /Officers inside the LPG Filling Shed). He was  cooling water jugs by opening a half inch LPG pipeline from the ubiquitous LPG Pipeline network and showering jets of LPG generously on the lower half of the jugs to produce the desired cooling effect. This way only several hundred kg LPG was used in a day for the welfare of hardly working SPCL employees. As mentioned earlier, Stock loss was never an issue in SPCL. The bigger issue was 'Satak Loss'.

The Officers, sitting on the LPG Cylinders in the Filling Shed, were discussing about Local Tapri politics and whining about certain ‘Chitting and Fissing allowances’ introduced in similar Govt. Oil Companies NPCL and GPCL but denied so far by the SPCL Management. Some of them were philosophical but a few of them were agitated that Reno, despite being Junior to them, had superseded all of them by several grades. This whining, grumbling was just a customary part of every day routine. Snafu, yet again.

In a cricket Match between Officers and Workers on last Independence Day, Chakrawarti Kumar the Manager- Plant was found to be chucking. The workers began to call him Chucker. On the same day while fielding, he failed miserably to catch cricket Ball (Batti, in workers’ language). But he revealed his capability to grab a crab (chakkar batti, in workers’ jargon) from the wet outfield. He further demonstrated how to eat it raw. They all began to call him Chucker Batti. Satak liked the name.

This is how Chakrawarti Kumar became Chucker Batti.

Manager –Plant, Chucker Batti, was the next in Command. As Satak and Reno were just outside LPG Plant waiting to welcome the learned bosses; it was Chucker Batti –Chucker Batti all the way.


                                       Chapter 11


                    How to grab a crab-- Chucker Batti

Techno Tandi, Butterfly’s true lover, had grown Mint leaves & green chilies in a small area in the perennial ‘wet-land’ below the eternally leaking overhead water-tank constructed by Topi Pissoo. The ‘wet-land’ was exclusively used by Butterfly, Reno, Tandi and Chucker Batti for cultural activities like rain dance and daily local food festivals. 

The whole local ‘wetland’ had a large no. of land / terrestrial crabs that elsewhere in Tapri used to come up out of hibernation only after Monsoon. Techno Tandi was unofficial caretaker of the ‘wet-land’ & crabs. While he had learnt from Chucker Batti how to eat live crab; he was now far ahead in the knowledge and practice of ‘crabbing’; leaving the art of cribbing to the successful SPCL Officers.

Reno found the crabs very cute. The day he saw a full size crab for the first time, he was sure about his second car- the vintage ‘landcrab’ (BMC ADO17), made in England.   
Those capriciously lateral/forward moving weird creatures, like many of the bosses in SPCL, were ultimate fear factor food for most of the people in Tapri but not to Tandi, Butterfly, Reno and Chucker Batti who used to enjoy local food festival of crabs, cooked or raw, in the ‘wet-land’ every other day.

As Butterfly and Reno were busy outside the Plant in managing the ‘extravaganza’ for the bosses; Chucker Batti was quite upbeat at the prospect to grab a larger and better crab. Tandi caught a fully grown crab, dressed it with mint leaves, green chilies and some salt always available in his pocket. Chucker Batti had a pathetic -hungry and ravenous- face while watching Techno Tandi handling the live crab so deftly. 

Tandi offered the first one, a pale yellowish crab, to Chucker Batti. He did grab the drab crab, removed the scab, began to dab the flab of the live crab, and then finally put a large slab of the crab in his mouth. He pleasantly felt a part of the crab wriggling around in his mouth in a green pool of mint leaves and green chilies. He closed his eyes and began to thank God for giving him an opportunity like this to savor such a delicious crab. For the rest of the day, now he could blab about the crab he was just having.

The moment Chucker Batti was having the sensation of the third crab wriggling in his mouth, the Security Officer blew the siren as he saw huge flames outside the Plant. The pleasure was so heavenly that Chucker Batti found the sound of Siren melodious and in sync with the exotic experience he was having through the wriggling crab in his mouth. As Chucker Batti did not respond to the siren; Tandi thought it was just a mock fire drill. They both continued to devour the crabs like today's Suresh and Ramesh eating Cadbury chocolate in a trance.

Factotum Techno Tandi, just one of the Contractor labor but extremely essential to Butterfly and LPG Plant Operations, heard a lot of workers screaming. Tandi soon realized that something had really gone wrong. He instructed Chucker Batti to take control of the situation at the main gate. 

Chucker Batti followed Tandi’s instructions most loyally and reached at Main Gate to see Satak and Reno running from one end to the other end of the Main Gate, from outside, while shouting ‘Fire-Fire’. He tenaciously joined them inch by inch and decibel by decibel. The only variation was that he was shouting ‘fire-fire’, with the last crab still in his mouth, from the inside of the closed Main Gate.

As the crab melted in his mouth, the reality also did in his mind .He began to shake in his pants as he knew there was almost no water in the huge Underground Tank or even the smaller Capacity eternally leaking Overhead Tank Constructed by Topi Pissoo…

The water available was just enough for two-three minutes to fight against fire. Whatever water was pumped daily from two bore wells was barely enough to take care of the daily requirement of Plant mainly due to leak in both the tanks since the inception of the Plant. 

The LPG Operators were thrilled to hear the sound of siren. They knew it will be the end of the duty for them for the day. They stopped the carousel (the machine at which cylinders are filled) at once. Hapless workers stopped playing flash and carom. They all, except the three drunken ones, sprung to action. They all knew there was practically no water to fight fire in case the fire reaches inside the Plant. They had been taught by the Local Management that the show must go on.

So, they were ready for the show and ready to play Holi with each other- may be just for only two-three minutes. Some connected the fire hoses to fire hydrants; some reached at the fixed water monitors and began to wait for the fire engine to start. Some took Fire Extinguishers and ran towards the fire. 

The all knowing, raincoat wearing,  Account Officer cum HR Officer Pujya Doshi - as per his role in the Fire Organization Chart- telephoned to Police, fire-brigade, Civil Authorities, Ambulance and the neighboring Oil Companies depots and ran out of Administrative Block to Security Block to help the injured , if any. He cleared the traffic and a truck load of filled cylinders  without documents at the main gate.Now he too was free to follow his bosses. 

Union leader DM Yadu ran towards the gate and saw the wooden platform collapsing and the bosses falling. He then saw the actual fire from the inside. Now he rushed to administrative Block and narrated the whole story over telephone to two journalists of local news papers. (Kindly see the Chapter no. 7- A dancing pro becomes a PRO about Journalists.) 

Many of the Officers rushed to fire engine to start it, without succeeding to start it even after five minutes of blowing up of the danger siren. It was the duty of Safety Engineer Bapurao to start the Fire engine but the 'arrogant traitor' was still in the Hospital.He certainly deserved one more Charge Sheet.

At last Techno Tandi reached at the Fire Engine Room with a crab in his each hand and one in mouth. He transferred the crab from the right hand to the left hand, started the Fire Engine with his right hand within a few seconds without letting go his precious grabs - the crabs.

They all waited for two more minutes to see the pressure in the Pipelines develop. The lines were not pressurized as Jockey Pump and the caretaker of the Jockey Pump- Bapurao, both were under maintenance. After 7 minutes the lines were fully pressurized and the Team –Tapri was finally in a position to fight fire that had by now extinguished on its own.

The workers, like their bosses, always believed that show must go on. They used water in playing holi with each other till it was all exhausted. They all missed to see Butterfly drenching.

( To be continued...)