A Surgical Strike

By: Dr. Zafar Ahmed

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Students of my wife’s class started losing items like rubbers, pencils, crayons, and colours daily. My wife would go to the Lost and Found section of the school for no trace! Complaints were growing and biggies of the class volunteered even to carry out searches of bags, had she allowed them. Normally, biggies of a class are used as unpaid marshals by teachers, but my wife refused them that chance to show off. She herself secretly searched and sensed some suspected bags on some days when children were away for their PE(PT). Though really worried, she was appearing to ignore their complaints, one way or the other.

In my wife’s school even the EWS-quota! candidates were from well-off families, so, why would anyone steal!? My wife, the teacher had to recall that one student named Y used to show her some sketches, drawings, paintings and craft-items done by her at home. She distinctly remembered that Y did not show any such thing that year!! On asking Y, she came to know that her parents had asked her to give up those activities, and that they had confiscated her art and craft material. She also recalled that: Y’s doctor parents never behaved cool in parent-teacher meetings, they did not like to hear a compliment on their daughter’s art-work; they were always in a hurry and anxious too, and that she had to be very firm with them.

One night, after dinner, I found my wife in a very serious mood. She called up Y’s mom to say “this is regarding Y, check her bag and belongings secretly when Y has slept or she is not around and let me know.” Promising to get back to her, the mom responded very well. Later, the mom was shocked to find a multitude of items such as erasers, pencils, crayons and colours in Y’s possession. She also discovered some drawings and paintings under the mattress in Y’s room.

The mom reported all that to my wife. She directed the mom to bring those items only after school hours. This transaction was completed but not without a warning and an exhortation to the parents that they must allow Y to do art and craft also at home.

The next day, my wife the teacher went to the class,

displayed those recovered items to return to students who had lost them.

Students were most curious and some even expressed their shock that they have been contacting the Lost and Found themselves, but in vain!!! Slowly,

children’s queries started popping up, before she cleverly and quickly changed the topic saying “Today let us read a very interesting…..’’, she gave a glance at Y to find a curious smile on Y’s face.

After a week or so, the peon came to inform my wife

that one old lady was waiting for her in the lounge. My wife came down, the old lady held her hands warmly and thanked her with blessings. She was Y’s granny and my wife felt rewarded.

Another teacher who generally wished that teaching

would better be a half a day job, saw the old lady in the campus interacting

with my wife. Next day, she warned my wife that teachers needed to be more

careful as even grannies had started coming to complain! My wife smiled at her timid thought and moved away from there.

Friends, my wife’s act was truly a surgical strike

which has never been claimed and talked about for any personal benefit or

propaganda. My wife at present is a house-wife, Y is a budding and working

architect abroad and the doctor-couple are our family friends.

By: Dr. Zafar Ahmed

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