Question, I could not Answer - Dr. S.S. Chhina
The bustling of Teacher Union’s Elections at the end of every academic session was an annual feature. About 150 teachers of Khalsa College Amritsar was a significant contingent of the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers’ Union. I was a candidate for the office of President. Every candidate was using all plausible language to muster the maximum favour in those elections Psychologically, I remained fidgeted to approach the maximum number of teachers in the college or in their residences in the evening. Prof. Mohan Singh of English department was known for his neutrality and good relations with everyone but was of the opinion that there should be no elections rather anybody willing to donate time should be selected amicably. He was also holding impressive influence, that is why every candidate approached him and pleaded with plausible language to muster his support but nobody could change invariable stance.
Albeit I met him number of times in the college campus, we exchanged our pleasantries, but I never talked on the election issue, because I had planned to visit his house for this most important objective.
Accompanied by another colleuge of mine I went to his house one evening. I saw his pleasant and smiling face while receiving us. He made us sit in his drawing room. After the usual chant, I requested him to bolster my candidature and sought support with the words that “Sir, please give me the chance to serve this time". He smiled and replied that he would vote for me but further added that I would have to answer his single question I observed the whimsical change that was paradoxical to his invariable stance of neutrality but I was curious to know his question. Meanwhile my collogue enquired that if you are to support only on the condition that he may give right Answer to your question. He remained mum for a moment but retorted that No, No, I could answer his question the next day or even after the elections or even if I may give answer.
Then he posited the question, that prior to the electrification in rural areas there was no facility of electric fans, At Village Congregations on festive occasions, the Gurdwara management used to supply huge hand fans to the audience. Sturdy young men, one for each fan, would hold its flag like pole in the palm of left hand and start flagging with right in order to generate a sort of wind. When one got tired, some other gentleman would volunteer his services to carry out the arduous task of fanning the audience by hand and provide cool comfort from scorching summer heat. My question is : Are you going to provide some similar "Sewa" (Service) if voted to victory or is it some other kind ?
Really it was a big puzzle. Prof. Mohan Singh cast his vote in my favour and I got elected also, and now we have retired since long, we meet on different occasions but his question haunts me, for which still I have no answer.