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My Experience of the CAPITAL

posted 28 Oct 2012, 09:37 by olnf Admin
Author: Gikesh Nair

Just thinking about me being at this plant, in the village Rohad in the Jhajjar district of Haryana, just made me think, won’t it be nice to think how I got here in the first place? So here goes an unofficial guide to the capital of India.


Welcome back to India:
So here I come from my famed trip to Abu Dhabi. It was an aweful experience in a wonderful place. Was there for around 3 weeks and all I saw were some malls and on my return journey saw the tallest building in the world. Great experience but the work load took the hell out of it. The only redeeming feature, the return journey, was booked by the client, which saw me travel business class in Emirates and enjoy the biz class lounge (blessed are the rich!!!). So a nice flight of 3 hours from Dubai to Trivandrum and I land back at the airport, waiting to go back to office and let my seniors know of my arrival (and to brag to my friends about the trip and the biz class flight ;D).

I come to the office, discuss with my project manager the pros and cons of the project and suddenly out of nowhere comes the topic that a dear friend, who was at the Jindal Lifestyle project (on site support) in Delhi region has decided, he can’t take any more shit and I have to go replace him. This comes as a shock as I have been there before and know how very boring the place is, and how unorganised the client is. Then came the bout of resentments, arguing with the project manager and the lot, only to find me ready for my trip to Delhi in a week’s time.

Story Starts:

Taus of Bahadurgarh:
So here I come to the famed city of Delhi. A point to notice is that the place where I was supposed to stay is not Delhi, but a suburb or the famed NCR region, or a place outside Delhi but near to Delhi. This brought me to Bahadurgarh, a township in Haryana again in the Jhajjar district. Tau is a local slang used to describe a person as an uncle.

Now this place is a revelation (in not such a good way). I am introduced to various harsh realities of life, harsh because these are things which are new for me, both to see and experience.

Here I am at an industrial area, during the summer, and the best part is that there’s no electricity to welcome me to Bahadurgarh. Electricity became such a rarity that during all my life time, this was when I knew the actual value of electricity. Something as small and menial like the light from a bulb during the night was considered a luxury, or the spinning of the ceiling fan during sudden bouts of electricity supply, felt like heaven. Electricity, became something of a dream. The best part of all, we had power cuts in the plant, where the power (which came via diesel generators) were also to be cut in the admin block so that production should continue. Also part of experience, I survived the largest power cut in India, and faced a complete 48 hour power cut. Wonderful, never forgetting experiences.

Then comes food, I am quite a foodie and not very choosy on food, but the food and quality was very surprising. I had the largest amount of potato in my life here. The same food, no change in taste and vegetables of the same taste, everyday. Nothing even closely has ingredients like salt, masala or chillies. This made life very boring but taught another important lesson, how good is the food that we get at our homes, at the places where we used to live, the food that we cooked and ate a lot?

Transportation: Three wheeled wonders
I have been a very pampered child and it continued to my adulthood, one proof of the same is the only public transport I had ever used was taxi and auto, but here I came across a totally new way/mode of transportation, the auto-bus. As per the name, these are strong workhorse autos made by Piaggio Ape, which have enormous load bearing capacity. The maximum I saw was 28, me included, in one auto. It’s a wonder to even see such a thing being driven on road (more amusing is the police officer catching tripling on a bike but nothing to this).

This place is around 15-20 km from the nearest metro station and the way to get to it is by taking such an auto, then a share taxi (which is a more comfortable alternative, with a Versa filled with only 10 people min). Using them both we could get to the metro station, from where, anywhere in Delhi is not far away.

But this taught me the importance of not only having a personal mode of transport (any kind of vehicle, brand doesn’t even matter), but more so the most basic public transport, bus. The NCR region has grown in length and breadth but the connectivity to important places hasn’t. This has resulted in such illegal modes of transportation, which are both a pain in the ass and bloody dangerous (I have seen quite a few accidents involving such autos and the casualty is always high, especially the people sitting on top). But normal people have no other mode of transport, as there are no other buses to connect to the metro station. The situation is same in Gurgaon or even Noida. Proper town planning, wonder what that is?