Part – II

Ire of gods and sorrow of souls

Section 2: Gods admonish

Savior Lord

Days of desert

Out of the frying pan into the fire is an age-old phrase, when a poor frog thrown into a heated pan of a cook jumped out of it only to land itself in the fire of the hearth below. I was a frog in the pan when I refused to go to Iraq in June ‘75 as a specialist for the oil well drilling by ONGC. Higher ups were unhappy and their heat was upon me.

 In September ’75, I received an appointment letter for a higher post, and the new job for me was only in the deserts of Iraq. As per the office rules, I had to be at Basra within forty-five days.  Darwin’s evolution theory fails on such occasions, and our behavior becomes typical of lower, non-thinking animals. I threw myself into the hot desert of Iraq for money and position and reaped the consequences of my frog-like foolishness of leaving India and jumping into the frying  desert of Iraq.

First man to greet me in Iraq was a class-fellow of mine. He told me that I was the only fool in the lot of Indians there who was feeling unhappy about discontinuance of his research project in India due to posting in Iraq. Others have reached here to make money using all the push and pulls. He also cautioned me to avoid confrontation with my boss, Bully Brute. If I do that, consequences will be grave. My boss was ruthless and extraordinary in the tact of subjugating his subordinates. The class-fellow cited a recent example about his maneuvers to disable an officer who complained against him.

Heat of the desert and my boss was perceptible soon after I landed in the hearth of   Iraq.

I had some solace soon, however. Asmat joined us during January ’76. His philosophy and way of living was to make others happy, something seen rarely among us. However, it was more than a coincidence that relations between my boss and me took a downhill road after the Muslim friend of mine arrived at Basra.  Difference of opinion between Bully Brute and me escalated soon on technical matters. He commanded me to follow his views because they were for broad policies about oil exploration in Iraq. I was a specialist, however, and could not entertain such philosophical views or projections. I would stick only to the realities of my own scientific investigations and my evaluation based on the data from the samples of the well under drilling. Scientifically, there was no reason to be emotional on the technical data generated by me. Our differences grew, however; and, acrimony soared due to managerial problems of my boss, reaching zenith in April ’76.