And, when I had to stay back for one extra day as my brothers engagement was fixed all of a sudden, I called Quadhar and informed. He listened to me and said ok. I felt good for that.
That day afternoon, I got a message to my mobile from an unknown number.”
(06:45 PM, Bangalore City Rly Station)
“Please call me back”.
I actually received that message one hour before. But, as I was busy with the function at home, I dint check it right away. And when I saw that, I immediately called back to that number.
“Hello. Who is this?” – Uthrani
“Uthrani. This is Thyagarajan.”
“Hi Thyagarajan. Sorry. I don’t have your number and so couldn’t recognize you. Sorry.”
“That’s alright. Where are you?”
“Thyagarajan, I am in my home town.”
“Are you not coming to the office today?”
“No Thyagarajan. I have informed Quadhar of this in the morning.”
“Whom are you reporting to?” Thyagarajan asked me with a very strong tone. I was not able to understand with what intentions he asked me such a question. I did not know what to answer him.
After waiting for a few seconds and preparing myself, I replied “Thyagarajan. I am reporting to you.”
“Then whom should you inform regarding your leave request?”
I started getting tense with this second question. But, as I have to answer him, I did. “You Thyagarajan.”
“Then why are you saying that you informed Quadhar.”
“Thyagarajan. Quadhar is our team lead and he is the one who is allocating tasks to us and so I informed him.”
“Uthrani. You are not a junior to teach everything. Team leader is different from the person whom you are reporting. The team leader is the person who will allocate your tasks. That’s it. But, all other things you have to get in touch with your reporting manager. I don’t think I should teach you all these things. And the other most important thing is that. We are in a crucial period. We have to demo to our clients next week and now if the team goes for a vacation, how do you think we can go ahead as per the schedule.”
I was completely silent with that kind of response from him. I never expected such a response from him. I applied for leave one month earlier and that too I planned a vacation for just 3 days after 4 months gap. And yet he reacted that way. I was totally upset with his answer. Just to keep the conversation up, I replied him “Thyagarajan. 2 months back when you visited Bengaluru, you said that Quadhar will be our team lead and will take care of all of us. And so I informed him.”
“Yes, Take care I meant project related activities. Remember that I am your official reporting manager.”
Every reply from him is making me more and more sad and angry at him. I wanted to fight back with answers. But, considering the kind of replies he is giving, I decided to pull it down at some point before I break out completely. “Sorry Thyagarajan. As he is our Team Lead, I thought I should inform him and so called him and informed.”
“Uthrani, it doesn’t look good if you go for leave during a crucial period like this. I never thought you would be so irresponsible. I hope this will not be repeated next time. You have to plan your vacations not in these kinds of periods. I heard that you just submitted your code to the QA without performing Unit Testing. That is a very unhealthy practice. It will give way to lots of bugs from the testing team which will ultimately result in the decrease of the QA ratings. You are not at a stage to learn all these now. You crossed 2 years. You should be mindful of all these things.”
The whole conversation went on the same path. He is trying to dominate with just two points. And so I just remained silent without replying him back. The conversation went on for almost 15 minutes. And at the end, he said that “Hope I can see you back in the office by Wednesday morning” and disconnected the call.
After the call, I locked myself in the room and sat idle for about 30 minutes and was crying incessantly. I do not know what to do. I cannot share this with anyone. I saved this for myself and was crying like a child. Every word he spoke hurt me very badly. He was the one who said that Quadhar will be our team lead and we have to reach Quadhar for any kind of information and so I informed him. I also said Quadhar to inform Thyagarajan. He said that Thyagarajan approved. I did not understand whom to blame. That was not the first time either. He scolded many times. But, that day I can never forget. And especially the way he talked. For one moment I felt like why I am working baring all his words. From last four months I dint take any leave. I worked late nights many days and also almost 3 to 4 weekends I spent my time at the office working on the project. In the last 8 months, all my code was 95% QA average. I was the one who completes the task even before the time. Even when my mom came, I used to stay late nights because I am committed to the work I do.
When things go fine, he won’t say anything and when something goes wrong little bit, he fires back. I don’t know what rights he has to scold the employees.
All these thoughts, I kept within myself. I’ve never really shared it with anyone. If my family members will know this; they will immediately stop me from doing my job. I dint even share with my mom because she is the only one who supports me for doing a job and now if she saw me feeling bad, she will also turn against my decision. And so I was not yet in a position to deal with anyone. I kept everything within myself. It was so incredibly painful. Every word, every question, every answer from him disturbed me a lot.”
Uthrani explained her pain to Ishanth and Ramya. Both of them had no words to reply to Uthrani. They were just staring at her. After a minute, Ishanth replied.
“So Uthrani that is the reason you took this decision?” – Ishanth.
“Not exactly Ishanth. After that day, the next day I started from home. As I got tickets for break journey, I had to travel till Mumbai and then from there I had to catch another train to Pune. My mom and my brother accompanied me till Mumbai. After we reached Mumbai, we were waiting in the waiting hall for my next train. I and mom were talking about my family. All of a sudden, my mom raised topic about my job.”
“Uthrani beti, you are happy with your job right?”
“Why are you asking like that mom?”
“Uthrani, you know right. None of our family members agreed when you said you will go for job. Even dad dint agree. But, I made them agree for this. After you joined, many times discussion came in home regarding the same. In situations like that, it was very tough for me to make them calm down. I used to make them calm so that they won’t discuss that with you over the phone or when you come home. It was all going fine Uthrani. But from recent times, it is getting tougher and tougher especially from the time of your marriage discussion. But, I don’t think I can stop it anymore Uthrani. Some or the other day you have to get married and when that day comes, I cannot make your husband’s family agree for this. Hope you understand. I thought of telling you all these when I came to Bengaluru. But, you were getting late at office and so I dint trouble you. Apart from all these, when I was in Bengaluru, one day you came from office at midnight. You looked very much afraid and tensed. You were continuously looking back till you came inside the home and even after coming inside, you were frequently looking out through the window. I thought of asking you what happened. But, I know that you will share with me if there is anything and also I thought not to disturb you more as you were already tired at office. The next day when I had casual talks with neighbors, I came to know that the area is not so good for women, especially at midnight. And also many incidents happened in that area.”
My mom explained everything that is happening at home. She never spoke about all those in these 2 years. When I noticed that she came to know about the area we are living, I tried to convince her saying that there is nothing like that.
“Mom, there is nothing like that. Everything is fine. Long back few incidents happened. But, now it’s all fine.”
“Uthrani. I trust you and so I dint discuss that with you till now. But, I am only afraid that if something goes wrong, I cannot answer our family as I was the only one who supported you when you said that you are interested in going for job. Even though you worked late nights, you never looked much tired and used to go back early morning the next day. So, I understood that you are dedicated and also very much interested in what you are doing. Beta, I am fine as long as you are happy with your life. I will do my best to stop our family as long as possible.”
When she said those words, she almost cried hugging me. And, even I was not able to control myself. Tears came down running. When the train arrived, I got inside. The only thing that was running in my mind is the discussion happened between me and my mom. To be frank, my mom is pushing my family members so hard. She is doing it, right from my graduation. I thought it’s not fair for me to make her face those situations just because of me. And, on the other side, even I was not happy at my job because of these guys who always cares about their projects, deadlines and clients. They are never concerned about the person who is completing the task. They are worried only about the task. All they need is the completion of task and are never bothered about the person behind it. The whole thing was running in my mind continuously for 4 hours. And then finally I took this decision. My family is not happy with my job; my mom had to face tough situations at home. And even I am not happy working and so I took this decision.
I dint share this with anyone because I don’t want people to start giving me suggestions or advices saying that be strong, problems will come, you have to face them being bold and all those things to lift my confidence levels. But, this is nothing like that. This is a pain which only I know how much it is hurting and how much it is disturbing. Yes, there are so many people who are working despite of the situations like this. But, I can say only one thing. Only that person will know how much it hurts when you are facing problems like this. I would have continued for some more days if I am happy at my work. But, I don’t think a day like that will ever come. These people will never see people as people. And they don’t even have a little concern even though we are women’s.
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