20 December, 2011

in the city of people

We celebrate chaos in every tiny move...
This post is written for the 'Set you on fire' contest conducted by Indiblogger with association of KFC that is "Describe an event where your sharp mind and fiery tongue got you out of a sticky situation." If you find this post interesting, please do leave your comments and you can also promote it on Indiblogger or share the link on Facebook or Twitter.

CCouple of week back I was travelling in the bus, a local bus in the city Bangalore, back to home from work place.
I was terribly tired and so drained. I got into bus and searched a seat basically a seat reserved for the women. Unfortunately I was late and all the seats were filled. Soon I noticed an empty seat just behind the women seat. Yet it wasn't retained for women. I sat there and kept my heavy pullover bag on my lap. It was definitely a long day and I was looking forward to a little nap during my way back home in the bus. The bus was moving and many people were getting down and many were getting up in the bus. This is a usual chaos scene of every evening where nice working people goes mad to get into bus to go home.

After almost 10minutes, a young well-build guy came near me and asked me to get up from the seat. I wondered why he was saying me that rude. Actually the kind of person I’m, I usually get up without a do from my seat of I find any senior citizen, women with kids or pregnant women. And just when he said, I knew he wanted to sit but guess that he choose completely wrong words to speak with me.
I looked at him and asked him, "why should I get up?"
He looked at me with a dare and said that ‘it wasn't the women reserved seat to sit, hence you must get up. This seat is for men!’

My lord! Bless him, whom is he teaching those legal values, somebody like me who goes beyond anything to follow rules, he is asking me to watch it. I very calmly asked him, ‘where is it written it is the seat for Men?’

Of course certain seats are blocked for women, couple of them for senior citizen and few for specially challenged people but buddy tell me/ prove me where is it written that other all seats are for men?
He puzzled looked around and again with much higher tone asked me to get up. Interestingly to my next was the seat reserved for women where a man was sitting. I asked that rude guy to ask the man to get up from the ladies seat and ones he gets up I shall get up from this seat. But that rude character didn’t had the guts to ask that man sitting on the women reserved seat and was continuously poking me. He thought with his fierce tongue, I will feel afraid and will hastily get up.

But I know though we have millions of rules and regulations in India with adverse punishments, we remind them only when it is convenient to follow.

I didn’t get up from the seat despite being harshly treated. Interestingly none of the other person in the bus came to support me, nor did the conductor who has a responsibility to see if all the passengers are comfortable, was least bothered to interfere. In my own pace, took out my ipod, plugged my ears with the song I loved the most, closed my eyes and ignored that guy completely.

Mean while, when I was listening to the songs, I recollected few more crushing incident of travelling in bus or train.

LLong time back I was travelling in Delhi in the bus. I was then in my last phase of teens, were quite young and not that efficient enough to comprehend the temperament of the city and city people. The bus was fully packed with people. Hell is the phase in bus when stinking people keep leaning on each other. There I saw one of the very old women standing just beside me, looking tired and mob of people crushing her. I also noticed a ladies seat occupied by a young guy. No sooner, I asked him to get up so that this old lady could sit. That guy started arguing with me very rudely. I kept my tone low and kept asking him to get up. After a while making failing attempts to make this guy leave that ladies reserved seat, I asked that old woman to ask this guy to get up. I thought since she was elder, if she says he would definitely get up.
And just when I said that the lady with her fiery tongue started yelling on me.
For the moment I could not understand why she was getting upset with me.
Anyways, I was only supporting her and fighting for her right, couldn’t she figure out that simple story around, I wondered!
Later I realised that both of them were neighbours and knew each other. Hence, she doesn’t mind if that young guy who is capable and strong enough to stand or help others, prefers to sits comfortably on the seat reserved for ladies and give trouble to other indirectly.
I soon understood, after this incident that I was wholeheartedly welcomed to Delhi the Capital city of India and a very convenient City.

I was doing my training there in the city Delhi, basically New Delhi.
I was supposed to travel back and fro home by bus or local train which took almost every day couple of hours to reach. Travelling was a bit tiring but long journeys sometimes give us a time to take a nap or time to read a lovely novel. Hence, I never complained for long travels.

SSince while travelling by bus I had to change two buses to reach home, I had got my train pass for the quarter of year and decided to travel by train, it was more at ease. In the beginning it is quite an experience. I was amazed to see that the ladies who at home teaches their kids not to talk to strangers; actually compelled me to speak to them when I didn’t wanted to. Interestingly, Delhi people have this strange tendency to talk, talk with strangers and try to get into issues, especially when the issues are personal. They simply love to know your name, your family members and perhaps your job and even your home address. Please don’t be surprised of some day while you are waiting or travelling for a bus or auto rickshaw, somebody starts talking to you and ultimately asks your pet dog name.

After few weeks I noticed on the platform there was one more guy, one of the trainee like me travelling back home in the same train. Whenever we got out of our work early we used to come to platform to catch our trains together and used to talk.
Finally I got a friend to talk and finally I could avoid stranger ladies's personal questions.
He was a localite* and hence had ample of information of the city. He actually taught me many safe short cuts to follow and reach the destination early. Actually he was the first person who introduced me to the Cheese Sandwich sold at Janpath, back then it was only Rs.10/- He taught me the trick to get into an empty compartment so that I could get a seat to sit. It matter a lot to have a good friend in a city which is new to you. I sure had good company to enjoy and talk plenty stuff.
And just when the train used to arrive I used to get into a ladies compartment and he into general bogie. Just when we used to get into the train in different compartments, I used to message him and ask him, if he has got into the train. Since the train used to utterly packed and even getting into would be a severe headache. The reply would comeback, ‘all well and packed, feet being crushed’. It wasn't the scenario that men never got into the ladies compartment but since women were kind of afraid to ask them to get down, often a large group of young guys and men used to get in. They often used to stand at the door of the train compartment. Sometimes few of them even misbehave with ladies but you see I never found even one lady raising her finger against it. Even the ladies effortlessly behaved according to their feasibility and ease.

I often used to ask him, if he sometimes gets a chance to get into ladies compartment, will he come. But he was least interested; he chooses to struggle rather to break rules for suitability.

One day with the same kind of the routine, we were on the platform waiting for our train. Don’t know what was the reason but all the trains were moving fully packed. Unfortunately we even missed out first train due to heavy crowd. I couldn’t just move there, everyone was pushing each other to get first in the train. This friend of mine could have still gone anyways the circumstance would be but since I was unable to catch the train, he left the train and preferred to stay with me and go the same train. Perhaps, it was getting evening and more crowd was expected.

There was an announcement and the next train was about to arrive.
We were alert to get in the train and so as a huge crowd of other working-people. Just when I saw the train getting slow and then stopped for couple of minutes. While I was still getting into ladies compartment, I noticed that my dear friend wasn't able to get into his general bogie. He was about to miss the train. Soon I shouted his name and asked my friend to join me ladies compartment. Obviously he denied and I insisted even more. He wasn't still agreeing but had no choice; general compartment was fully packed hardly to put down the feet. So he came with me in the ladies compartment. I know according to the legal rules, he wasn’t supposed to be in ladies compartment.

We decided to stand rather to sit.
Between do you know,‘Why there are seats or compartment in train blocked for ladies?’
For those who thinks that women are today working shoulder to shoulder with men and with that their responsibility is over there. I shall appreciated if men bring down their ego meter a bit and behave like a gentleman. The reserved seat for woman is so that ladies to feel secure and comfort. Since our men are often so uncivilised, that sometimes they just forget to be human. They forget to give respect and dignity the woman deserves.
And very often we women forget and ignore to demand our own rights just for the sake of the convenience.

Anyways, we were standing and talking about our making of reports and daily stuff. Suddenly a woman sitting few steps far said, ‘this is a ladies compartment and men/boys are not allowed’. I was so surprised, when big men get into the compartment these ladies hardly ever say anything. Some young men even misbehaved with them but these ladies never protested. And just as one sheep walk other sheep follows, similarly one woman said and other women also started saying. Legally they were correct and there is not two thought for it. But why two rules for same people.

My friend kept asking me not get engaged into any argument with them but how long could I hold feeling. Finally there was a reply to their fierce tongue. Just then I brook my silence. I said, “What wrong is this boy doing to you, he is not disturbing you by any means, nor he have occupied any seat of your, neither he pushed any one of you with his shoulder or pinched any one of you. And just because he is a young teen boy standing quietly at the corner you are yelling on him like this. Why don’t you point finger when big old men get into ladies compartment, they even sometimes misbehave with you all, isn't it? ”

Finally there was a pin drop of silence.
After the out-pour, it felt this was something I wanted to tell them since the first day I got into this last local train.
There will be 90% of people not agreeing with me on this note.
Sure it was against the rule and regulations.
Definitely I was not supposed to support on this issue.
I agree!
But I don’t regret having supported the right person, especially when it wasn’t his fault at all.

I opened my eyes, since all my songs of the ipod were over and I had almost reached my home. That troublesome guy got down some place when my eyes were close. Everything was so usual and just as typical as always.
Soon I got down my stop. Walking back to home I realised, a long time have been passed ever since then, almost a decade. Yet I do not regret my stand.

Definitely if someone is my friend I shall stand for him/her any ways the wave of support be.
And one more thing sometimes no matter how polite and sweet you are, you needs to be bold enough to make decisions and stick to them. Being rude and aggressive is no fun, yet sometimes one needs to have a fiery tongue to get out of the sticky situation!

  • This is my personal opinion, you need not agree on everything.
  • No matter what I have written about a place and people, I still love that city and have special bonding with it. I love India and all these silly incidents make my bond with people, city and culture more intact.
  • There is no disrespect for anything or anybody in the above post, just an experience being shared with my opinion.
  • You have whole right to celebrate and share your opinion and ideas. Feel free to share your thoughts and incidents while travelling.

The picture above is taken from the movie Dil se featuring Prity Zinta and Shahrukh Khan.

~ Keep the Spark Alive..
~ Celebrating City life!


  1. i agree with this post of yours dii
    in the 1st phase of these post that guy should have shown some decent respect rather than arguing with you . he is a guy but in our country we respect women's n he should have done that . great job by you .
    in the 2nd phase even if you are a neighbor of someone n u have some issues with each other we should forget those issues when someone is in trouble . you tries to help that women but her behavior was very rude towards you . she could have said that thing in some other way also rather than being rude with u .
    in the 3rd phase as u know people around this world are too scared . when someone will do something wrong with them they wont do anything but when they would see someone is alone n thy can take the advantage they would become brave n will start following rules n regulations .

  2. I happens only in India...

  3. Well written rasna ji. Contrasting two halfs. Second half somewhat nullifies the first half. I am very impatient person. Mostly i jump to conclusions. Its not bad considering that i always keeps everything simple. Just to simplify everything i make conclusions of my own. which was the case right here. Yeah we do sometimes oppose just for the sake of it(As it happens in parliament). Reservation means minimum for that Community/ religion/ gender/ etc. It can exceed the minimum. For some Reservation means u cannot get into unreserved part. I think the whole reservation system is wrong. Because it makes further divisions. But we need reservations because of socio economic cultural differences. India means everything is orderly chaotic. From the buses to trains, roads everything is chaotic. Village people are mostly well behaved why? beacuse they have a easy going life. Here in cities metros the life gets faster that leads to chaos. In that chaos we the indians are losing our culture and respect for each other. I think we need good leaders. Indians are basically great followers. How many discoveries we have made?? How many innovations we have created that has helped mankind??? How many steve jobs we have produced?? Tomorrow if we go with placard and shouting slogans we will see a group of people following just for the sake of it without knowing the cause. I think we need to learn and understand everything after that we should commit on anything. I think we should use our mind before doing anything.

    As for Anna ji`s crusade against corruption.
    I don`t think everything Anna says is right. We should not follow each and everything word by word. Today we are saying govt is corrupt parliament is corrupt not letting CBI to work freely. So we need a lokpal which will supersede the govt. But we must know atleast we have the right to choose the parliamentarians. But who will choose the lokpal body??? I guess i will side with the lesser devils. Who is Anna to dictate terms and condition to parliament?? The systems are in place, Its our fault that we the citizens of this great country making everything fail.... we don`t need laws we need our people to change their attitude. We need good leaders who instead of saying do this and do that dictating terms, should say how to get better in everything we do. how to take advantage of the systems that are already in place. Basically we all indians need to develop leadership skills and develop tolerance and respect for each other.. for life...
    We don`t need Anna.. We need ourselves.. The day we get awakened every chaos every corruptions. Remember rules get changed as per the situation demands. :)

    Hey Rasna ji keep writing. Be same... The girl with brains and courage to stand up :)...
    Always Rasna ;).

  4. What the hell .. How can he ask you to get up.. ITs basic ettiquetes as such to offer a seat to a lady .. Stupid MAN..

    You did the right thing shouting at those women who were shouting at that kid ... Well its world truth that we shout only at those who listen or alook scared .. as you say they never dared say anything ot those who behaved badly with them .. weird people


  5. oops ***The day we get awakened every chaos every corruptions will get eradicate. Remember rules get changed as per the situation demands. :)

  6. Where did my comment go? That's indeed a mystery.. well let it be.. I liked your post and journey from the first line to last one was pretty intersting as halts at a few places to contmeplate made it beautiful..

    Continue to write Rachana.. it's a great way to unwind and make life a lot more simple..keep writing as beautiful as the comment you left on my post.. thanks.. may the visits be mutually enhancing..

  7. This is a perfect heading you gave this post, and u r exactly right. Facing or meeting different kind of peoples in lifetime everyday and also the social public rules to control people who are not using their 6th sense and the same rules how it is affecting the people who are all using 6th sense as well and in a society sometimes its really hard to manage all these things....

    This is just a small part what you have shared in such kind of pblms also this is a great experience and thanks for sharing madam :)

  8. That's so bad, How did that guy asked you to get up? Really bad.. He will goto hell for sure.. The way you spoke in the train is perfectly right.. I agree with you Rachana.. Thoughtful post.. Keep writing..

    Someone is Special


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