Isn’t destiny an amusing thing? The juvenile girl who won debate competitions on women entrepreneurship, women empowerment and women leadership was herself forced to fear freedom.


It was the day which all students who had given their board examinations waited for with eagerness as well as panic. It was the day that decided whether you would go to a college walking or waste hours travelling in long metros. It was that day which determined whether you would make your mom proud and give her extended hours of boasting or rather let Sharma ji’s son steal the limelight. It was the day that made certain whether you would get to eat at Taj Hotel or get no dinner at all. It was indeed the class 12th board result declaration day.

Amana was pretty confident that she had done exceedingly well in English and was positive that she would pass all other subjects with a good margin except for well, any guesses? Mathematics

Giving a maths exam is like going for a haircut which you do not want but have to get anyway because your mom doesn’t appreciate those flicks covering your forehead. Sitting in the exam hall and waiting for the maths paper to come and fall into our hands is like waiting for a bomb to flare whose ticking you can hear but there is no way you can escape.

Amana’s dad fired up the dell laptop and asked her for her admit card. Her hands trembled while she handed over the laminated black and white printed sheet to her dad. He entered the details, her board role number and Amana’s date of birth. The browser jumped to a new page. A web page that now held Amana’s fate. Amana had topped in English in her school and had managed to pass even in maths. But her final aggregate came out to be 86% only. In her mind, she was not only bidding farewell to all her yet unmade cool college friends, but could also see the fests and Delhi University fade away. Amana stole a quick glance from her dad and headed at once to her room. That was a long night. While she was busy browsing college options online, her mother made some calls and had a totally different plan. A shock rather than a surprise was soon going to come her way.

The subsequent day was a bright morning and the orange sun rays filled Amana’s room through the non curtained windows.

Her mom made her a fine cup of coffee and told her to get ready as she was taking Amana to pamper her and relieve her baby of all the stress that she had gone through in the last year.

The walls were painted velvet and hazelnut cookies rested in glass jars on every corner along with the latest fashion magazines. The atmosphere was filled with the fragrance of lavender oil and Shea butter. The receptionist was humming along to the tune of Hey Soul Sister. Amana changed into a bathrobe and experienced exotic salon services. The hot stones on her back felt splendid. The mud pack and the golden facial seemed to have brought her radiance back. The fingers of the attendant who gave her a head massage felt heavenly. Amana felt as if she were transformed into a new youthful and more gorgeous woman. No wonder women don’t mind spending thousands at one go in places like these! She thought.

Next stop was White Border which was the most expensive and the most renowned boutique of their vicinity. The lights gave a feel as if they were in a studio and made every single piece of clothing look even more shiny and royal. Amana’s mother selected a heavy anarkali suit for her which was parrot coloured. The colour of the suit complemented Amana’s fair skin tone and the net sleeves gave a good look of her slender arms. The flair of the suit highlighted her sleek figure very well. This was an outfit that was made for the young lady.

After reaching home, Amana noticed that her dad was sitting on the couch and the television was on with news about circulation of fake currency notes but she could see that her dad’s eyes were not on the screen but were travelling distantly out of the window pane, beyond the garden that stretched. It was very atypical of her dad to come home at this time because his job was a 9 to 6 and the clock showed that it was only 12. Her mom told her to quickly change into the new-fangled clothes that she bought and apply a little honey on her face. She also instructed Amana to go to her room and wear a charming gold necklace. Amana’s dad, as if being able to read her mind, told Amana that a boy was coming to see her.

Before Amana could even raise a question, her mom started sobbing on the dining table where snacks for the ladkewala’s were kept ready. Amana, as if caught in a net, moved her hands in all directions and told her mom that she was not going to marry right now. The idea was to go to a college and not step into someone else’s house. She was a woman who wanted blue prints of projects in her hands and not rich mehendi. Her mom told her to marry right away or all good guys would be taken by those DU pass out girls. She wanted her daughter to settle down before going to college because she knew that so much freedom could bring disgrace also and their daughter would slip out of their hands. She didn’t want her daughter to come home drunk at night. That would be circulated in the neighbourhood like fire and it would ruin her daughter’s image and chance of getting hooked with a decent boy.

“Mom, honestly all these reasons and qualms of yours are baseless. What is with this obsession of yours with Delhi University? It has only 56,000 seats. So does this mean that only those 56,000 young boys and girls have the right to study? Should all the other girls who are left run behind guys and get hitched? There are so many other reputed colleges which take in children through entrance tests. Talking about freedom, Ma do you have no faith on your upbringing? I want you to know that your daughter is a fighter and not someone who will settle for less. Your baby is responsible and will show you that she can be independent and pay her own bills. I have to prove to everyone that I don’t just say powerful words on the podium to win trophies, but will turn out to become like one of those women whose examples I give in my speeches”, Said Amana with tears in her eyes.

Amana’s mother wiped her daughter’s tears with the corner of her dupatta and kissed her on the forehead. She got up from the chair she was sitting on and walked towards the landline.

“Where are you heading to ma?”

“Just calling the Mehta’s to apologize to them as my beta still has a long way to go.”

Just because your child has managed to achieve a stumpy percentage doesn’t mean that it is the end of the world. No matter which college your girl goes to, Hrithik Roshan would still be doing hit movies, inflation would be going even higher and road accidents would still be increasing. When you aren’t stopping any of these things then why stop the bud that you yourself have raised!