Employment on compassionate ground

Recently I heard this story of a person as to how he secured a job on a compassionate ground. There is no big deal in the story except for the curious turns of events associated with it. How lobbying and exploitation are imbibed in every stage that makes this story interesting.

Before really we go into the events, we will try to understand how a person gets a job on compassionate ground. On the face of it the method seems to be logical and simple. Jobs are offered by certain companies to a dependent of an employee on compassionate grounds such as untimely death of the employee while on job, serious medical issues which render the employee unfit for the current role and for relocation to other departments, etc. Both in the case of death or unfit for employment, the dependent have to prove his claim. In case of unfit for employment, the employee needs to be declared unfit by a team of medical experts. Here my story is about the dependent who claimed the job after the death of his father.

As I mentioned, it looked simple to apply and get the job. The dependent needed to prove his credentials like identity and the company would offer him a suitable job. To prove identity, the dependent is supposed to produce certificate from the local govt. official and after that the company would process his application and offer him a job. It seemed simple and a cakewalk.

Our person now embarked upon the journey from getting the necessary papers to submitting the same to the company office. Let’s name him Daya. Daya was from a village and not much educated. He can be termed illiterate as apart from signing he can hardly read or write. You can also say he was damn lazy in this department and always preferred to take help whenever any matter of reading or writing was involved. So when he approached the office of the company, he was given to a form to fill in and submit the necessary documents. Simple to us but an uphill task for him. He approached few people. Sensing opportunity, the people became touts and offered help at a cost. Different touts quoted different rates and quite astronomical sums. Daya was semi-illiterate but no fool. He understood people are trying to exploit his weakness. He approached a good Samaritan about whom someone had advised him. Let’s name the Samaritan Vishnu. Vishnu advised him how to go about the process and also advised that money indeed would be needed to be spent to get all the documents done and processed.

First the identity. Daya was from a village so the village headman had to issue a certificate. But the village headman is no govt. official so a govt. official has to certify. The village comes under a Block in the govt. hierarchy and the head of the Block called Block Development Officer (BDO) has to issue a certificate. The BDO has an office with usual array of junior staff who would prepare certificate. BDO’s job is to sign only but preparation of the certificate has to cross many hurdles and at each hurdle palms are to be greased. For example, a rubber stamp is to be affixed. The concerned staff would say that the stamp is to be procured as old stamps have been discarded and it would take a week for the new stamps to arrive from the approved vendor. Daya had to flash few greens and the stamp materialized immediately. Similarly details are to be entered in a register and the certificate would travel to the BDO along with the register. The concerned staff would flatly demand few greens to do the job. Daya is in hurry. He knows that each day’s delay would cost him money, a day’s salary. He also knows nothing would move if he doesn’t pay. This is the most important document to secure the job. The Samaritan Vishnu advised Daya to follow suit. Monies changed hands and voila, the document was with Daya. He thought the job was in his pocket. He was far from truth. Few harder hurdles were yet to be negotiated.

Armed with the identity proof, Daya submitted the application (filled in by Vishnu, of course) to the local office of the company. The official machinery in this office also had to play certain role like verifying the application. It took more than 15 days to start the process that too after paying some grand to the clerk who would put up the file to the officer-in-charge. The Officer had his rates fixed for such work. It is not daily that such opportunity knocks your door. So few more grands spent by Daya and the officer signed the file. Next phase was the file was to be dispatched to the head office of the company. The baboo at dispatch doing mundane activities daily without any extra earnings seized the opportunity. His pound of flesh was also disbursed by Daya. Vishnu knew all these ‘steps’. By now Daya has also become knowledgeable. He knew that without losing his purse strings his case would not move an inch.

The file reached head office. Another round of ‘checking’ done and usual delaying tactics employed to extract more moolah from Daya. Once paid, the file was quickly disposed of. Now, as per procedure, Daya is to undergo ‘medical fitness’ test.

Three paramedic staff (Vishnu had doubt about their qualification and competence) conducted tests on Daya, Blood samples taken, heart and pulmonary functions tested, blood pressure checked and some other ‘tests’ were conducted, all by these three paramedics. Rates were fixed for all these paramedics. So irrespective of the actual results, as soon as the greens changed hands, desired results were issued. The concerned doctor who is supposed to declare Daya fit saw the papers and not Daya. His cut was large as compared to the paramedics. Daya paid his cut and he was ‘medically fit’.

The paper reached its destination. Vishnu ensured minimum fuss at this stage and with a little more money; the file was finally cleared by the authorities. Daya was appointed by the company.

Wait, the story doesn’t end here. The file was to be sent to the concerned branch office of the company where Daya’s father worked and where he would be completing his joining formalities. Again, baboos and peons played their role. Some more greens changed hands and Daya could finally get employed in the same company where his father once worked.

Easy money (read commission) has penetrated at every step of our lives. Securing the job is like getting on the foothold. Once I am there, the monthly salary is for just attending the office. As for work, I am as good as the commission.

The whole chain is in deep sludge and no one dares to clean. I would say no one likes to clean. The stakes are high.


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