Friday, November 19, 2010

On 1st August, 2005.


It all happened in 2005, late summer. The lights were put off. There were thin disappearing sounds in the boy’s dormitory. I used to stay in a room full with students from lower classes. We had classes right from seven to twelve those days in Zhemgang higher secondary school. I was like a captain of those little sheeps, not something like lion as many may assume given the fact that there was so much a huge separation among seniors and juniors. Most juniors, even myself as I was in class 11, were all the fearing and scared juniors of our class twelve seniors.  I was on the staircase on my way to leak when  I met vice councilor. He was panting. He must have been running.
“SomTobgay! Our friends are all ready. The seniors just beat Sangay. He is bleeding”
“If that’s the case, you won’t be able to do anything. You better take care of yourself while I would do same for myself “We all knew what Sangay’s situation was. But they over did it. Why someone like him would come to me and talk about it, or was it all coincidental, I had to curse my luck. And in the darkness, I had no idea that there was someone who could ignite the situation for me later on.  I returned room after toilet.
“You are the captain of class 11 A?” I could see him getting closer with the gesticulation that spoke nothing less than him trying to slap on me. “Do you know that someone from your class during the morning study asked the class about Chazam’s girl?”
How in the hell am I suppose to know what every student in the class is doing. Let’s just pass the fact that I would know who spoke what and who heard what in the class. We used to be all busy in our own conversations if the teacher on duty is not strict. And the fact that our academic buildings were placed so far from eachother, the hill in between the two blocks made it easier for students to most of the time take advantage of the distance. Of course, we do have two teachers sometimes monitoring the study hours.
I was watching TV when some senior walked all the way towards the stage and stood beside TV Screen and shouted in the crowd.
“All class 11 A heroes, can you come out?”
And I was asked to come forward for being a class monitor. Somehow he stopped; I don’t know what made him stop. It hurt me so much. How in the hell someone I knew from middle secondary school try something of such sort when he is just a year senior to me in high school? Power corrupts human being, almost every Shakespeare play have this common theme. A class monitor is supposed to know everything, then I would have actually made myself clear of the fact that he should know everything as he too was some sort of captain in the school. They were four of them. I don’t know if any of my friend looked at me with the pity or with disgust towards them for physically bullying us.
“The one who has giddiness feels like whole world is revolving around him”, I shouted at Tshering Dema. She cried for our suspicion towards her. And I couldn’t help but to feel like she’s the only person so much in close relationship with so called Chazam’s girlfriend. She denied having leaked the conversation of the class to seniors.
I escaped the visit of these seniors the night before as my room was with lower class students. They visited class 11 dormitories and warned my friends of our casual teasing on the girls when these girls come and go out of mess. The road that led girls towards mess from their far dormitory actually passed above our dormitory. And this is when they warned of us teasing their girlfriends who are actually our batch.
“Where is Robot?” It was a light captain from class twelve. Robot hid somewhere, I didn’t have any idea since then, and even till now. But it was good, at least the lights would stay off. The steel shutter was locked from inside. Soon night was disturbed by noises of discreet footsteps and joyful naughtiness.
They were all over. I was standing on the corridor on first floor. The steel shutters gave way to the heat of the moment. There was all sort of clash, nothing less than fight. It was as if, we are done with this act of stepping aside and bow our heads low as and when our seniors walked pass us. Everyone was moving in the pattern of the circumstance. Saw some of my friends full of rage and satisfaction as they moved forward to confront the seniors who sneaked at bulk in our hostel courtyard. Soon teachers gathered, students pacified themselves and hostel went to utter silence in few minutes, lights were put on and it wasn’t so long before we found out most of ourselves hurt and beaten. They survived on 1st August, 2005.
There was so much noise among the students next morning. They were all whispering the night. It just hadn’t finished yet. After few minutes, some of the seniors from science class appeared in my class and took out me. Hell yeah! I was leaning over the wall, and one of them was jostling and pushing me. It was him who was listening my conversation with councilor in the darkness. Now it has already become more than a ragging. They actually ran over almost many of my friends at that time.
“You are good at studies and I am good at fighting”, lets have it here. But then I knew one of them, so he made it light for me. But in truth, I actually knew the guy who overheard my conversation since we were in middle secondary school in Yebilaptsa. It was just that like many, people fall victim to power hunger.  Today he almost mauled like a hungry bear over me with rage and pride.
There was this statement writing and many procedures. One of the teachers told me that they are just jealous of me. I did say him that I had my worst share of falling victim to the ragging in the hostel. There was this common saying and thought among the students in the hostel, and that was when class 11 students reach class 12 finally, we would end up doing same. I replied him that this thing won’t stop, it will continue for some days. And exactly, it wasn’t so long. My class teacher came looking for me and he took me to his home with him. I don’t have any idea what happened that night, but I definitely know that police has to come and make students settle down. And policing in hostel continued for some days.
“We shall not leave any stone unturned”, the education officer’s words echoed among the mass consisting of class 11 and 12 in the assembly ground.
“All great wars on earth started because of woman”, he was angry. He should be. He continued “Trojan war, and even Battle of Changmilathang, all because of woman” he paused. “To know these things, you should do deep reading on history”
I had my school leaving application submitted in Vice principal’s office. He couldn’t let me leave until he finishes the case. The Case? It has become a case. We were scheduled to meet Dasho  Dzongrab. They cited the main reason as our ogling at girls, and that we tease girls so much. We stood on the point that ever since we stepped inside the school, we have been getting this kind of treatment from our seniors. And the fact that there were so many of us who got beaten, we literally won the case in front of Dasho Dzongrab. They knew everything how Sangay was beaten for actually asking a girl who has had her hand injured already, by her boyfriend and adopted brother. They came to know everything that happened on the nights of 1st and 2nd August, 2005.
However, many of them got suspended for about few weeks. Sadly there was also one of my friends, as to say so much a close friend who was a senior to me, he informed the night guard wrongly on the fateful night. Had it been for us, we would at least forgive them as we actually did when Dashi Dzongrab gave us the option of punishing these guys. Dasho Dzongda interfered the matter later on and they eventually got ousted for their deeds.
I remember how they bullied us on the fact that they will always be a senior by a year no matter where they go or what they do in life. And today, I don’t see any of them around. And we are all leaving our life. And yeah about that application I applied, I never checked in and Vice principal didn’t bother as well to ask me about it. Perhaps that’s the day when we actually ended up with free hostel. Everyone understood their own business.
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