Out of Sync Professor

I underwent training during the years 1963-65 in three renowned institutions- Foundational Course in National Academy of Administration, Mussoorie, I. P. S. training in Central Police Training college, Mt. Abu and state police training in Police Training College, Moradabad. All of them had a mix of departmental officers and professors as trainers. The Indian Administrative Service officers posted in N. A. A. Mussoorie were, as per their training and habit, more interested in administering rather than teaching. So they left the uninteresting and monotonous work of teaching for the professors. The professors were well paid and highly educated but had little experience of administrative realities.

Our professor of economics Dr. Ramaswamy had experience of long stints of teaching in foreign universities. During nineteen-sixties everything including food, clothes, housing and foreign exchange were so much in short supply that the governments had to perforce encourage savings and launch umpteen number of saving schemes fixing targets of savings for each district officer. Dr. Ramaswamy, who had learnt the economics of plenty in the West and had little experience of paucity, would often burst out in his lectures, "Do you think that the country is going to progress through savings? The government should encourage consumption if they really wish the country to progress.” I, who had seen abject poverty and non-availability of even essentials of survival in my village, would listen to his outbursts flabbergasted. It was only after three decades since Dr. Ramaswamy’s outbursts, I could see that his theory of enhanced consumption for progress in India was worth trying now, but in India of sixties it was thirty years too soon and would have been suicidal.

Prof. Ramaswamy was thirty years ahead in his views on romance also. He had the capability of taking semi-circular or even full-circle turns during his expositions. And switching from economics to romance for him was like swimming in the water for a fish. He would bring the bored, dozing and snoring economics class to rapt attention by switching over to body-oriented romance in films from saving-oriented economic policies. He would often, while gazing with rapt attention at the youthful lady probationers, say, "Do you think that running around bushes behind a heroine is love?" And sometimes obliquely or sometimes explicitly profess that love comprises of kissing, hugging, snuggling, smooching and further on.

Again his comments on Indian films were thirty years too soon because it took about three decades for the love scenes to remain no more limited to fooling around bushes in the parks, but became explicit hugging and kissing scenes which often ended in bedrooms.

Interestingly, it was about thirty batches after my batch that the probationers became so bold that one lady probationer valiantly vanished for seven days with a male probationer while the batch was on a trek in the mountains.


More by :  Mahesh Chandra Dewedy

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