Mr Verma , the managing director of the company was taking interviews. There were many candidates in the corridor waiting patiently for their turn. Almost half a day had passed and it was the turn of the last candidate to go in .
“Harsh ,you can go in”, the receptionist announced.
Hearing his name being called out, Harsh took his files and entered the cabin.
The interview went on for about ten minutes and the expressions on Mr Verma’s face revealed that he was not too pleased with him. Harsh had come on recommendation of one of the staff members.
“Your qualifications are good but the job requires at least two years of experience which you do not have. I’m sorry to say this but I cannot employ you at the moment as there are many other deserving candidates more experienced than you.”
“Sir, I m in dire need of a job. I promise you that I’ll work hard . Please , I beg you to give me an opportunity. I’ll always remain indebted to you ‘’.
“You’ve good qualifications . I m pretty sure you’ll find a job of your caliber.”
“Sir, my father is retired and is bedridden for the last five years. His retirement funds have all been utilized in his treatment and that’s the reason I’m in desperate need of this job.”
Mr Verma looked at Harsh very intently, and in a flash his memories took him twenty years back when he ,too was thrown out of a company despite his innumerable pleadings. He ,too ,was very hard working but his only fault was his late coming as his mother was critically ill, and the entire mornings were spent in hospital visits. He used to compensate and sit late in the evenings and finish off all the pending work , but yet, boss was never pleased with him. He always looked down upon him with disdain which, till date ,Mr Verma cannot comprehend the reason for it. Lack of financial resources had snatched his mother away from him and that guilt of not being able to save his mother still pricks his heart. A surge of anger ran through his entire body. He could not forgive his boss but he always remembered his mother’s words ,
‘Please forgive and move on ,my son. God has something better in store for you.’
He looked at the pleading face of Harsh .
“In which company was your father working in ?” asked Mr Verma, breaking the brief silence.
“ Sir, it was a private company.” replied Harsh .
“ Harsh , I understand the situation you are in. I’ve decided to give you an opportunity to work for my company . The probation period of three months will decide your future.”
Harsh was extremely elated. He thanked Mr Verma a thousand times and hurriedly walked out of the cabin in excitement.
It was the first day in office .
Harsh was seated in Mr Verma’s cabin. He wanted to tell Mr Verma how his father had expressed his desire to meet him . He was a bit hesitant , as to how Mr Verma would take his request. Will he accept it or will he show him the way out ? Mustering some courage, he blurted out,
“ Sir, my father is very keen on meeting you. He keeps recollecting his old days, but there is always a tinge of sadness in his eyes. Sir, will you please come home just to fulfil my father’s desire ?He would be delighted to meet you ”
Mr Verma was taken by surprise . He remembered his bed ridden mother . How vibrant she used to be meeting and conversing with people. It kept her in good spirits and made her forget all about the illness at least for a few hours. Something within ,urged him to go. If his visit could bring a smile on someone’s face ,then why not ? He didn’t wish to ignore this request of Harsh.
“Fine ,Harsh. I’ll try to make it on this Saturday.”
“ Sir , I can’t find words to thank you. My father will be extremely grateful to you.”
Harsh was delirious with joy. He took his boss home on the following Saturday.
Mr Verma saw a fragile and tired old man lying on a small ,rickety bed in the corner of a tiny quaint room. Everything was eerily silent. As he went closer to touch his feet, he couldn’t believe his eyes. It was his own boss who had made him jobless some years back and who was the cause of his mother’s death. A myriad of emotions rose within. Restraining himself, he said,
“Sir , do you remember me ? I‘m Mr Susheel Verma who was working with you some years back .”
The old man strained his eyes. He recollected the name immediately . He held Mr Verma’s hands tight and started weeping like a child.
Mr Verma found himself in a very embarrassing situation.
Fumbling for words ,he said,
“Sir, please calm down. You are exerting yourself”.
After a pregnant pause, the old man said,
“I ve waited for this day all my life. Please forgive me, my son. I cannot carry this emotional baggage anymore. It was a big burden on me. See my state now, the same as your mother was some years back. My son, Harsh ,too, is in the same position now, as you were some years back. You pleaded with me but I couldn’t feel your anguish. I feel very small now looking at you. You are very generous, my son. Your mother’s loss is irreplaceable. I can never forgive myself for it. You have reached such great heights in your career. I m very happy for you and I‘ll always remain indebted to you for giving my son a new lease of life.”
Mr Verma couldn’t control himself.
“Sir, you are elder to me and I respect you. Let’s not discuss about the past. I ve done nothing for your son. I ve just given him an opportunity to prove himself in three months which I m sure , he will .Your health is his priority and he needs your co-operation. So please take care , Sir”, said Mr Verma , to keep his boss from sinking into the quagmire of depression.
His boss struggled for words. The resigned eyes looked up at him. There were only tears flowing. Tears of repentance, tears of gratitude and tears of finally having made peace with his inner self.