Friday, June 28, 2013

Century missed

“Don’t  read Baghawat Geeta. Go and play football”, that was the starting of an article, which my father wrote for me for an school essay. The article was the first and last given my father. It was containing all bombarding words which I could not understand and never approached him for another article. But the starting line was deeply embedded in me and stopped reading Geeta.
My father, late Pattamadai Subramanian Ramachandran would have completed a century by July 9, 2013. But he left the world much earlier in 1993. He was a simple and contented man. Even during his older days he walks a lot. He can’t digest his children’s mistakes in English and hence I never show my copy books to him. He was a very good Badminton player and won many cups in tournaments.
His only companion was books, books and only books. He will quote easily from Bernard Shaw and Shakesphere. He can equally quote from Bible pages also. He was a communist in mind.
Whenever he took his children for outing, he will be walking fast and we can’t match his speed. So we children rarely go out with him. I went out with him on two occasions. When I joined Engineering in 1973, on the first day he took me to Thiagarajar College of Engineering. But the seniors ragged me even before him. In 1978, he took me to Sundaram Clayton, Chennai where I joined as a graduatre trainee.
In 1973, it was his 60th Birthday and our family members decided to celebrate it at Thiruchendur. In the college, I contested for the Class representative of the College Union and I was elected. Now the elected members have to select the Chairman and the election day coincided with father’s B’day. The team which was expecting my vote took me to the college hostel and were not allowing to go and join and my family members. My family members who were worried contacted the college principal and I was rescued from the hostel and we went to Thiruchendur, myself without casting the vote. Fortunately, my team member won the election. So that celebration, I can never forget in my life.
In 1975, I was staying in my elder sister’s (Mrs. Gomathi Gopalakrishnan) house in Madurai and going to the college. My parents were settled in Karaikudi since my another sister was working in a Bank there. One day I bought my 3rd year books and going through it. My sister told me to show the books to my brother-in-law.  She said our father never cared for the children, but you should show it and share it with your caring brother-in-law. I showed it to him and was receiving a different kind of care from my brother-in-law which I never had from my father.
In 1982, after a very bad experience with TVS group of companies, I was to join ONGC in Assam. One day I started my journey to Assam. My loving mother came to see me off in the bus station. As usual my father didn’t come. At the bus station , my mother uttered these words, “குருவி தலயல பனங்காய் வச்ச மாதிரி நீ எப்படித்தான் சமாளிக்கப் போறியோ?”, meaning you are to manage all the excess load on you. But its more than 30 years, some how I managed the load and going ahead, thanx to my beloved mother.
After joining ONGC I revealed to my family about my love with a Christian Girl. It was a storm in the tea cup. I know my mother’s word was totally shattered. I got support from my father and brother-in-laws. I was lucky enough to get married to my love. My mother used to help neighbours who were in trouble. She always sees the problem and not the people whether they are Brahmins or non-Brahmins. So I took her concern on the same principle and she half heartedly agreed for the marriage. Marriage went on smoothly. My parents and my in-laws were the witnesses for the registered marriage. At times my wife was stunned by my father’s knowledge on Bible.
My father was a very strong man but for two things. One is the sound of thunder. Hearing the noise of thunder he becomes mad. At times goes out of house in open air even if it is raining cats and dogs. He feels secured in the open air. Another good friend of him is the rat. He starts dancing when he sees a rat and calls for a pied piper to get away the rats.
I learnt and follow atheism , playing ball-badminton from my father. My daughter behaves exactly as my father seeing a rat or lizard!
This blog won't be complete if I don't mention about his contemporary and a celebrity having his name. It was none other than MG Ramachandran, late Chief Minister of Tamilnadu. My father had a soft corner for MGR, even though he does not like film actors except MK Thiagaraja Bhagavathar. When MGR was shot by MR Radha in late 60s, he brought home lot of Tamil news papers to get more news. When MGR was thrown out of DMK in 1977, again he used to bring Tamil papers and used to loudly news about MGR. I still remember, he used to enjoy reading the slogan, "பிள்ளை நடிப்பான் பிள்ளையா பிள்ளை, அப்பன் அடிப்பான் கொள்ளையோ கொள்ளை ". "Alai Osai" was his favorite Tamil daily that time. Whenever I admire MGR, and say he is a popular actor who has acted in more than 100 films, he used to tease me, " Kumar, did u include "Ashok Kumar" where your MGR acts in a small role as an assistant to MKT and physically fanning MKT all the time?" He liked one of the MGR's movie song " பறக்கும் பந்து பறக்கும்", in which MGR and Sarojadevi play Ball Badminton.

He was happy in playing cards especially game called 28. All the family members will sit down and enjoy playing the game with him. As I said earlier he never likes the Tamil movies of our times. But once in Karaikudi we took him to “Avanthaan Manithan”. That was the only time we went to the movie with him. He was restless throughout the movie.
I lost a friend, philosopher and a guide in his death.

Other blog by my Sister
My younger brother on my father

Comments on my article:
Vijayalakshmi R Sarma True words right from the heart need no comments

Arun Ramachandran Very well written!

Sally Kumar : If you can wirte such a nice article on father, you can write thesis on others!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Good Bye Assam

Time has come to leave Assam. It was long innings of 11 years in Assam. 7 years during my first tenure and 4 years in the current tenure. I just look back. I came to Assam in 1982, September empty handed.(physically and mentally I was a zero). Assam is everything for me. It has given me more than I deserve.
After joining ONGC in Assam, my Bank Balance started rising. I was knowing Tamil and English only when I joined here. Assam taught me Hindi, our National Language.
During my first tenure , I got married and both of my children were born during my stay in Assam.
In 1984, there was an International Seminar on Oil Well technology conducted by Regional Reasearch Lab, Jorhat. I approached Mr. W.M.Mahajan, then Head of Production Department for participating in the seminar. To my surprise he told me that I should present a paper in the seminar. I accepted the challenge and presented my first paper on " Computers in Drilling Technology".
In 1985, I was selected to represent Assam State in National B chess which was held at Mumbai.
In 1988, I was also in the team lead by Shri Jamestin, now Dir(HR), in making the first computer presentation on big screen. The computer presentation was appreciated by one and all and the whole team was awarded by Shri P.K.Chandra, then Vice Chairman, ONGC.
Thus, ASSAM has given me everything - Money, Knowlege, promtions, social status and what not.
I feel for Assam more than my mother land.
Good bye my mother, I'll be with my family members whenever possible.