Friday, June 24, 2016

Vaayana vaaram - Day 6.

Maman had woken me up earlier than usual as we'd to hand over the publicity material to the jail authorities and a copy of the meeting notice had to be handed over to the MLA. Accordingly, we'd set off from home by a half past 7 and after taking a few copies of the material from Omanakuttan at Vazhuthacaud, set off for the MLA's house.

The watchman at the housing complex told us that he'd been given strict orders not to send up any visitors to his tenth floor flat till 9, as he wanted to make it in time for his first day in the Assembly. The lifts were consequently kept switched off and I didn't hesitate trudging up the long flight of stairs, pressed the doorbell; the door was opened by the house keeper who told me that the MLA was having his breakfast, shut the door after asking me as to who I was and to wait outside. Perhaps, he didn't hear me well but something in me told me that the wait was gonna get long and I decided to go down and send Maman along to do the other pending work, while I'd follow in a rick later after meeting the old man, since I wasn't carrying my cellphone.

Thankfully, one of the lifts had begun functioning by then and I'd reached the 10th floor all over again and was allowed to enter the house. The old man was pleased as Punch when I wished him the very best on his first day at the Assembly. He inquired about my mother and recalled the time when we'd met at the Kochi airport's lounge while I was the LO to the late Field Marshal SHFJ Maneckshaw and I felt nice!

Babu, a kind auto rickshaw man, who brought me to the Kanakakkunnu Palace from there, didn't throw tantrums and asked me a measly Rs.30/- as the fare, while he could have easily fleeced me on the issue by saying that the route into the palace was long and that he'd have to return without passengers, till the gate, incurring a loss. Good men are there after all!

The programme, today, went off fine with the minister for agriculture in chair, though he'd come late because the Governor was announcing the new government's policies and priorities that lasted around 21/2 hours. By 20' to 1, we're on the road through mad traffic to reach the Central Jail at Poojappura to meet the deadline of 1300 hrs for 'reading out the pledge' on the occasion of the Vaayana Vaaram.
The programme went off well with the minister of ports in chair with Rajettan and comrade Pannian being present. About 200 of the jail inmates formed the audience in a massive hall and the whole ceremony was conducted over a period of slightly over an hour, followed by a scrumptious lunch - prepared by the inmates.

It was back again at the Foundation, for debrief and preparations for the final day tomorrow! And a fairly late night at that!!


1. Today's theme, "Agriculture and environment".
2. Dr Kamalasanan Pillai, an agricultural scientist and  Dr Afroze Ahmed, Advisor, Narmada Control Authority, Dr. Subhash Chandra Bose of Jalanidhi, Dr. Thampan of the 'Bhasha Institute' and Ramakrishna Pillai kept the tempo of the discussions lively.    

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