After a Long Saturday night doing Research at Ashoka University, Richa was able to go to bed only at 4 am. She placed an alarm to get up at 8 so that she could catch the train to Vidisha. Vidisha is a District in Madhya Pradesh, where Richa and her family belonged to. She was going to meet her parents after 4 months and it was more special because Diwali was 3 days away.
Richa was here in Delhi for a 1 year research program for creating an App that had the potential to change people’s life with regards to any Skin problem they may have.
The App could actually put a Dermatologist out of business. As once completed, this app could make anyone self diagnose any skin allergy, Rashes, Changes in Colour, Pigmentation etc. that one may have.
One just needs to Switch on the cam, activate the app on their Smart Phone & then try to see the affected area through the screen.
After 10 seconds of capturing that area, the screen would tell all about the skin. The Colour, The Structure, The Texture, The kind of Allergy, The Cause, time it may take to heal and also the cure and that too only after paying 2 US $ for the download of app which would come with unlimited usage policy.
At least this is what she envisaged.
She had some savings and most of them had been spent on buying a Laptop and on paying monthly bills of her High Speed Internet back home so that she could surf more You Tube Videos, Read more about Skin & connect with able Professors who would keep sharing their feedback on her progress and once in a while would also come and chat with Skype.
The Only problem she faced was of Devices, which kept changing (read upgraded) every quarter. The devices were costly and she was not able to buy them.
But thanks to the Scholarship from Ashoka University, she could access their pool of assets and use Phone Instruments and experiment any development she made on the app.
By 10 in the morning, Richa was already in the Vidisha bound Jhelum Express which would take 11 hours to reach home.
As Richa had a long Night, she slept immediately after she boarded.
And by the time it turned 2, it was also time for Agra Cantt. Station to come, where Richa had planned to get down and grab some Cholle Poori for Lunch.
Once at Station she bought a plate of Cholle Poori and started eating it on the busy platform as she knew that the train would stay here for another 15 minutes and was hence relaxed.
Once done with the tasty Cholle Poori and hands cleaned by lightly rubbing them against her faded jeans she went to the newspaper stall to pick up the Hindustan Times which was her daily read in the University Library.
What blew up her mind was the Front page ad of Samsung Note 3.
She thought, Combination of a Phone with so many features and a Big Screen would make her app research and development more effective.
The entire journey to Vidisha was now spent thinking about Note 3. Note 3 had created a spell on her but there was no way she could afford such an expensive phone. All her saved Money was spent on her Laptop. Also the Rs. 3000 she got as stipend barely covered her entertainment expenses, which would be watching Movie Once every week and on her Love for eating Pizzas. And whatever she could save, was spent on Pen Drives, Magazine/Book Subscriptions etc.
So the only option was to talk to her father, which she did after Diwali. But she was told that though they respect her decision of not taking up the Campus Placement last year where she was offered a Job of 12 Lakhs per Annum, but they will not cough up any money for this phone of Rs. 40,000/-. It partly reflected her father’s frustration too, as he thought once Richa’s College would be over, he would be able to get a sigh of relief financially and also get their home painted this Diwali from Richa’s salary.
Home Painting was a decision which was being delayed for past 4 years. And this Diwali it would be the 5th.
Her Dad told him, if she wants the phone, she should take up a job and spend herself.
Taking up a Job was never difficult for Richa. After all she had topped the university back home. But her plans were different.
This Diwali many relatives came to Richa’s house and they all gifted her Rs 100 as Diwali gift.
On Diwali Night Richa counted it and realized she has 1200 Rs.
This sparked an idea & for the next 2 days she went to every relative she knew of in the city.
She would go and Say, “Hello Uncle jee, was passing by here so, thought to meet you” And since she was going there after a long period and that too in festive season, she never came without Rs 50 or 100 as gift from them.
Though she had already visited 12 Relatives, but she realized that this plan had no punch as the total money did not even cross Rs 2500.
Anyways, with Rs, 4000 in her pocket she headed back to Delhi. The Additional 1500 came from Rs 500 each given by Papa, Mummy and Daadi.
Though she had a great time this Diwali, but she was not thinking of the pleasant time she spent with family, but of the Phone she wanted to have which would make her app more effective and also she loved the phone itself. She called it a “Piece of Art”
Back in University she got back to her research but something unusual happened. She had missed watching movies at Cinema hall. And this was second in row.
She started saving for the Phone, even if it meant giving up her few loves of Life. She had calculated that he may buy that Note 3 Phone in 9 Months at this rate. 9 Months, is actually what takes a Child to be born and herein 9 Months, she would get her Ultimate Joy too.
Thanks fully, some students in the university were not doing well in their exams and approached Richa for Tuitions. She was already saving those 5 hours every week which would otherwise be her Movie time, so she decided to take it up. Main Reason was because it would fetch her Rs 5000 Additional income.
Eventually in the 6th month itself, she could save enough to go to a Samsung Show room in Connaught Place to buy the phone. She picked up a Black one and came back to University and didn’t sleep for 36 hours. Time which was not spent while exploring the phone was spent by just looking at the phone and admiring it’s beauty. More so, because it was HER’s!!!
Now she started working on it, and as she had thought, the App was completed before time and in a more effective way.
She submitted her app at the Google Play Store & planned to go back to Vidisha and stay there till her App got approved. She would only be back after her App got approved to promote it
Richa always knew that she would not have to do much to promote it. She had to just give some interviews and focus on one Feature which would enable max downloads.
The Feature would solve many issues of today’s Young Women, and that was Acne.
Many Women don’t realize that Pimples are of different kind too and thus requires specific treatment rather than one size fits all, as in practice today.
Anyways, she still had some money saved with her and thought to go to Jhande Walan Mandir in Delhi, so that she could buy Parshaad packets for her relatives back home. Especially for those who had paid her Rs 100 on last visit. It was her way of thanking them. And for them too it would not have been just Rs 10 Parshaad ka packet but a Gift from a sweet niece & blessings from Maa Vaishno Devi.
Around 5 pm Richa left the temple and took a metro back to University. From the metro station she would take an Auto Rickshaw to cover the last mile of 6 kilometers.
Thank fully this metro had 6 carriages instead of 4, so she could have a comfortable space to stand and a have a comfortable ride.
As soon as she exited the metro station, an auto stopped in front and asked his destination.
The Auto Driver was delighted to hear “Ashoka University” as he was going towards that area only. He stayed in temporary settlement behind the University with his wife and 2 daughters aged 4 and 7.
Once they reached the University gates, Richa paid the agreed amount and came to her room.
This was her last night in the room where she stayed for past 10 Months. She went down the memory lane thinking how she Researched & Developed her App here, gave Tutions, decorated the room with posters of her heroes and also where she spent 2 sleepless nights just discovering her new phone Samsung Note 3.
Phone… PHONE… P-H-O-N-E… Where is the phone…. she Screamed…. And searched it in her pockets….. her room….. And then kept searching wildly…….
She must have checked each pocket of hers 7 times before she realized it was not with her and have probably LOST it.
She went through a flashback trying to reconstruct the last few hours.
The last she talked was to her Father, informing him that she is at Jhandewalan mandir and she is waiting to see them tomorrow night.
So, the possibility of losing it was narrowed down to 4 or 5 places.
Mandir while in Queue or while taking Darshan, In mandir while wearing her shoes, On her way to metro, In Metro, on her Auto Rickshaw ride.
And while her mind was trying hard to figure things out, Her Tshirt was already wet with the tears flowing down her face.
She actually wanted to howl, but controlled as it would disturb other researchers staying next door.
But what could she do now? She had a train to catch at 10 am tomorrow.
She went to her next door researcher and asked for his phone. Then through his phone sent a Whatsapp Message to her own Phone. “Hi, I’m a student. Please give my phone back, I Shall be thankful. I will give you prize too. I cannot afford to buy a new one. Please call back at 9810668585. I am at Ashoka University” and then better sense dawned on her and she sent the same message in Hindi too. Then on second thoughts replicated the same as an SMS too. All her senses were super active now and she was hoping against hope, but did not want to leave any thread unpulled.
In the meanwhile the man who had the phone with him is reading the Whatsapp messages and SMS too.
While reading the word “Ashoka University” he gave a feeble smile.
He copied down the number from where SMS came. Then he took out Richa’s SIM and installed his own SIM and slept.
Here Richa was hoping against hope and didn’t catch even a wink.
Around 3: 30 am The Samsung Note-3 Buzzed and hearing an unfamiliar notification sound the man with the phone got up and saw the message. It said that the Balance in your account is Rs 229 only. And he felt bad reading it and realized that the person was true that this phone is very dear to them and they can’t afford to buy a new one. Reading this the man felt depressed and thought to give the phone back.
He unfolded the paper where he had written the phone number and called to inform Richa that Phone was with him. He told her that he stays close to Ashoka University and Richa can pick her phone from Madan Lal Chaiwala’s shop at 7 am.
Madan Lal Chaiwala shop was known to everyone within 10 kms of his shop. He set up base here 20 years back when he set up his Chai Shop after seeing that the labourers like him laying the roads have no place to have tea. So, he left his Job as a Daily Wager and opened his shop. It was only a Co-incidence that Ashoka University opened just opposite his shop and his business saw a Rocket jump in business.
At 6:30 am the man kick started his Auto Rickshaw and headed towards the University gate.
Yes, Richa left her phone in the Auto Rickshaw while coming to University.
The Auto Rickshaw driver was in a hurry as he had a Routine customer to pick every day at 8.
Auto rickshaw driver reached Madan Lal jee’s Shop and then he heard that unusual Notification sound again. He took out Note3 from his pocket and checked the message. It was from his customer that he is not well and hence shall not be going to office in his Auto Rickshaw.
This left the Auto Rickshaw driver stunned.
He realized that it was “HIS” SIM card in the Note3 Phone and not of the person who owned this phone. . Also, the Low Balance Message he read while he was half asleep was from HIS bank and not of the person whose phone it was.
He quickly retraced his steps and, Kick started his Auto Rickshaw and rushed back.
Meanwhile, Richa was smiling since the time she got the message, but was still a Bit apprehensive too. After all it was too good to be true.
She reached the Tea Stall at 7 and introduced herself to Madan Lal jee and explained the story. Madan Lal jee Listened patiently to what she said and shared his helplessness in this matter and offered her Tea.
Richa sat on one of the benches and kept scurrying around for someone who would approach her or would be looking at her. And all this while…. Her tears rolled down slowly.
It was already 8 and she had to rush to the station to catch her train back home, which she did.
At Station she went inside a STD booth to let her parents know that she is boarding the Train and has lost her phone and hence shall not be contactable for next 12 hours.
And when she looked around she saw a Full Service Kiosk of Airtel at the platform.
She approached the person at the counter and shared the information that she has lost her phone and wants a new SIM.
She Paid Rs 25/-, Gave a copy of her ID proof, Filled a form and she was told that the new SIM shall work in 4 hours. She carefully slipped the SIM in her bag and boarded the train
Richa spent those 12 hours, just imagining the wonderful 10 months she had and also on spinning hopes on how her next 10 shall go, especially with her App expected to get approved any time by Google Play Store.
But deep inside her heart she was weeping due to the loss of the phone.
Clock Struck 10 and station entered Vidisha Railway Station. Richa was happy to see her parents there to receive him. Some thing she did not expect.
Also she did not expect that her Dad had brought a Micromax Canvas Phone for her as a Gift. The thought their mind crossed when they heard that Richa had lost her phone.
They wanted her to feel good.
After reaching home they had lots of talks over dinner and then everybody bid Good Night.
It was already 2:30 am. And then Richa realized to put the SIM in her new phone. She unboxed the phone, inserted the SIM, Put the phone on charging and then configured the phone to her Gmail account.
It would have been just a few seconds that she fixed the back cover of the phone and then suddenly Strings of Notifications started coming which ended at 3. When Richa opened the Phone to check, she froze for a moment. Her eyes got struck on 3 Messages
8 : 30 am : Congratulations your App has been approved!!
12:30 pm: Congratulations, with 2000 Downloads in 2 hours, your app is placed amongst Top 5 Paid Medical Apps on Google Play Store
4 pm: Congratulations, Your app has been downloaded 5000 Times.
7 pm: Congratulations your Google Wallet has been credited with Rs 6,01,327/-
Some Images have been sourced from www.google.com