Living in Time Warp (Chapter 1)

by Dr. Pran Rangan


Aditaya is a briiliant student having an affectionate individuality. He is able to secure admission into an IIT by the dint of hard work. Because of his great success his family members are extremely happy. After joining IIT Roorkee, he undergoes an unexpected and dramatic change in his thought process, which causes distortion of reality at times. During such periods of distortion, he drifts frequently into a world of his own - very different from the real one. When his family is informed about it, they get very much worried. Aditaya sneaks out of hostel surreptitiously one day before his father arrives, who is coming to meet him personally. His father seeks the help of authorities of the institute in tracing him but all efforts fail. Even police authorities are hapless to have a clue about his whereabouts.

On learning about sudden disappearance of Aditaya, his mother and sister become extremely distraught unable to contain their unhappiness. Family members make every effort to soothe each other, knowing well how difficult it is to bear it. At last, they compromise with their fate, consoling themselves by believing that this is his and their destiny.

After leaving hostel, Aditaya heads to Vanarasi by train when he is somewhat normal. Reaching there, he goes to a Shiva temple near railway station, where he meets some Sadhus (mendicants). In their company, he is introduced to smoking charas (hashish), which he begins to relish because it also transports him into the world of distorted reality.

One day, when his thoughts are less fuzzy, he takes a train to Lucknow, where he has been living as a vagabond since then, often flitting from reality to the world of illusion. Meanwhile, his sister, Shyamala becomes a doctor, aspiring to become a psychiatrist.

Suddenly, some unexpected happenings take place that bring about changes for all ..........!

The story will be serialized.

Sadanand is a head clerk in the department Irrigation and Water Works in the city of Allahabad. He has a congenial personality, due to which he is much liked. Even his superiors hold him in high regard due to his friendly behavior and official competence, despite his age. He is due for superannuation after three years. He lives in Civil Lines with his wife, an elder son and a daughter. He is also highly respected by his neighbors because of his friendly nature. Being a Good Samaritan, Sadanand is ever ready to help others in trouble. This had increased his popularity immensely in his office and neighborhood.

His wife Sujata is a housewife, who manages the household with utmost efficiency with what he earns. Their son, Aditaya, has completed Intermediate, securing 90 % marks and is preparing for JEE to get admission in a good engineering college. Their daughter, Shayamala, is studying in an Intermediate College and aspires to become a doctor. They all live together happily and everyone appreciates their bonding with each other, which is quoted as an example by many.

Aditaya mostly used to keep aloof since childhood, though he has some good friends on whom he can depend fully. He has joined a good coaching and is seriously studying so as to achieve his ambition of getting admission into an IIT. As there are six months to go for JEE (Advance) to begin, so Aditaya has plunged headlong into preparing for it, forgetting even what time of the day it is.

Knowing that it requires real hard work to get admission into a good medical college, Shayamala is quite serious about her studies. She has been working hard and doesn't want to leave a stone unturned to get into a medical college.

As the dates of the JEE are approaching, Aditaya is feeling nervous but this nervousness is, in fact, prodding him to harder work. At last, the D day comes and the exams begin. He is very careful while writing exams. And since he has performed all of them well, he is sure of getting through them. When the results of the JEE are published, his name appears quite higher up in the list of those, who have successfully cracked the JEE (Advance). It means that he is twice as sure of getting an admission in IITs, which are India's prestigious engineering institutes. But what remains to be seen is in which IIT he will get into. When the list of candidates getting into various IITs is announced, Aditaya's happiness knows no bounds on learning that he will get admission into IIT Roorkee. His family members are on cloud nine on learning this happy news. His father is very happy with his son, who has made him proud.

Next day when his father goes to office, every one congratulates him on the success of his son as this is a big achievement. He humbly accepts everyone's compliments, thanking them profusely. Aditaya is also much relaxed as there remains a period of one and a half months before he joins IIT. The whole family decides to visit the holy city of Vanarasi to pay homage to the Lord Shiva at Kashi Vishwanath temple for happiness given by the success of Aditaya getting admission in IIT. After the visit to Vanarasi, they all come back to Allahabad full of divine exhilaration. Then they begin to take up their normal routine, getting immersed in it completely.

Aditaya begins to organize all the paraphernalia required for joining IIT as he has decided to stay in the Institute hostel because of its convenience. He has already communicated his decision to stay in the hostel to the college authorities, for which a suitable accommodation is allotted to him. When it is time to join, he leaves for Roorkee by train. His family and some close friends come to see him off at the railway station. It is an emotional send off as tears well up in the eyes of his mother and sister. His father also becomes emotional though he is somehow able to prevent tears from welling up. Aditaya tries to raise their spirits by promising that he will be in contact with them on their mobile phones. As the train begins moving, they all keep waving him till the train is visible and then all, including friends, go back to their homes.

On reaching, he straightaway goes to Institute campus and checks into the accommodation allotted to him. After resting for some time, he goes to meet others who have come to join with him. Incidentally, he runs into his old school mate Atul, who had shifted to another city as his father was transferred from Allahabad. By the stroke of luck, his school mate was also allotted an adjoining room next to his.

Aditaya gradually settles down in the institute, getting acquainted with his class-mates and seniors. As he has attained high grades in entrance exams, he opts for computer engineering, which he gets without any difficulty. He attends some introductory lectures that are organized by the institute to orientate new students to their courses.

Aditaya keeps his family members well informed about latest developments taking place there by mobile phone. They all heave a sigh of relief on learning that he has settled down there. As their stress is over, all become busy with their respective routine. Meanwhile, Aditaya stays in contact with his all family members on phone, more so with his Mom and sister. This keeps their worry at bay.

Everything running smoothly, all of a sudden, Aditaya began contacting his family members less frequently. His parents thought that he might be busy with his own routine schedule and hoped that all would be well at his end.

To be continued

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