Vicky, the young boy, was a Jewel!
Vicky was a very popular young boy and we all knew him so well. He lived in a small town in West Bengal, in India . He was short and thin and was the only child of his parents. His father was in Government service and after his retirement purchased a house in the town to settle down. The house was at a stone’s throw from the school where Vicky was a student.
The Headmaster and all the teachers dearly liked this young lad for some of his exceptional good qualities. He maintained the kind of leadership and personality which were hard to find.
Mathematics was the subject which used to bother him a lot. One day he went to the residence of his Mathematics teacher and asked him if he would very kindly help him in the subject. The teacher was most surprised and felt very happy to find a sudden change in Vicky. “O.K Vicky, you can come to my house in the evenings. If I am at home I shall definitely help you.”
Vicky was excited. He started his special lessons in the evenings. Thereafter hours he spent at home practicing mathematics and within six months his improvement was remarkable.
One day the Mathematics teacher called Vicky in the Teachers’ Common room. As he entered there and stood before the teacher he smiled at him , patted his back and said “Vicky, you are now as good as any of your class mates. You are intelligent. Now that you have improved immensely I would suggest that you practice and practice to do even better. ”
Vicky felt very happy , the nice words cheered him up. Eventually he mastered the subject so well that he could solve some of the problems which others couldn’t. Some of his classmates even started taking his help.
He did well in his School Final Examination but thereafter he said to his friends
” That's it, I shall not take any more exams. I cannot spend my time in studies only, I have other things to do”.
Though he did not undertake higher studies , his love for mathematics continued to stay with him and he started taking private tuitions. Within a very short period of time the number of students grew so fast that instead of him visiting the students’ houses the students came to his house. There was a spare room downstairs. He made that room look like a class room with blackboard and benches and desks .
During day time Vicky did not stay in his house for long. His whereabouts could not be predicted. One moment he was seen in one place, the next moment he disappeared. But his visit to places was constructive, there was always a purpose to be of help to others.
Wherever there was a gathering of crowd because of some street accident, fight or whatever, you could be sure that Vicky would be there in the forefront. It was amazing to watch the way he would handle the crowd till Police stepped in. He was seen controlling traffic along with the Traffic police during any festive occasions.
He was a very good runner and each year he would at least win one prize in the Town’s Annual Sports events. He would take part in other events too and it did not matter to him if he came last. If questioned, he would laugh and say that all he did was for fun. His presence in the ground alone made things different.
A few years ago people of his locality decided to organize a Cultural function with a lot of fun fare. As this would involve a lot of money that had to be raised by way of subscription there was discussion at the Committee meeting. Vicky wanted to know the budget . It was a huge amount and everyone had doubts whether raising of the fund would be possible. Vicky thought for a minute or two and then said “ No Problem, I can take the responsibility if you want”.
They all agreed and felt relieved.
Mr. Sen, the oldest man present there patted his back and said “ Who could be a better person than you . Thanks a lot.”
Vicky smiled and from next day he took some boys with him and went for collection. He even went to the District Authorities and to many people he was well acquainted with. People subscribed generously without asking any question. His involvement in any matter was a matter of great delight. He was able to raise a lot more fund than what the Organising Committee could have ever wished for.
Who would anchor the show ?
The answer was ‘Vicky’.
Who would be the head in arranging artists, the stage , decorations, invitation cards and all ?
Everyone named only one person – ‘Vicky’ .
Vicky smiled and accepted all responsibilities .
The show was a great success. Just before it was over, at the wishes of all the audience, Vicky sang and danced too. People laughed, they applauded.
The District Commissioner and his wife, who Vicky had invited as the Chief Guests, called him and thanked him immensely. On their way back the lady said to her husband “What a smart chap !” The D.C. nodded his head and said “ He is a complete young man. I wish we had more people like him.”
Mr. Basu , a School Teacher, lived with his family next door. Vicky was very fond of the entire family. He would often visit his house. People used to be so scared of their pet dog , Tommy. Vicky’s entrance to the house used to delight this dog. If Vicky sat on the sofa he would jump on his lap wagging his tail and kiss him all over. Tomy seemed to say a lot of things which probably Vicky could only understand.
Mrs. Roy’s TV set was giving some problem. Who could put it right ? She immediately thought of Vicky . He came without delay armed with tools and eventually put it right. In case he failed he would go and bring a Technician. He never had any training in repairing TVs but he had acquired some knowledge.
An old man in his eighties lost his wife, had no issues and stayed alone in a small house half a kilometer away from Vicky’s house. Vicky knew him well. Having leadership quality he directed his friends and anyone he could trust to visit the old man and report to him about his welfare. Sometimes he would take a few friends with him and visit him , crack a few jokes to cheer him up.
Vicky had to go to Delhi one day with his parents to attend marriage ceremony of his niece. During the period he was away, there was no life in the town. Everyone enquired as to when he would return. And the day he came back everyone was overjoyed.
Vicky’s popularity spread far and wide, so much so that many of the elderly people thought that he could contest in the elections but Vicky did not agree as he did not wish to have any political colour on him.
One day his mother stood outside her house waiting for Vicky to return from market.
She called Dipak, Vicky’s friend who was passing by. She asked him if he had seen Vicky .
“ Auntie I returned from market half an hour ago. I had a chat with Vicky there. Anyway please don’t worry, I will tell him to return home without further delay.”
Dipak alongwith a few friends proceeded towards the market.
“ Where the hell he could be ?” Dipak asked his friends.
Sameer laughed and said “ I am sure he is at David's sweet shop. He must be having some sweets and his usual cup of tea there and chatting with David.”
“ I think you are right, said Peter. Every time I go to the market I see him at that shop”.
By this time they nearly reached the left turning of the road from where the market was not far away.
Raju said , “ Look , there is a crowd. Our Vicky has to be there.”
They all walked fast and then stood in silence. They couldn’t believe their ears what they saw, Vicky was dead and gone, he had been run over by a car whilst crossing the road , possibly to go to the sweet shop and died on the spot. There were the Ambulance , Police Vans, Cars, motorbikes everywhere and the Police finding it difficult to cordon the area. Everyone trying to take the last glimpse of their dear friend .
The news of Vicky's death spread very fast. All the shops closed their shutters, Schools, colleges and clubs were closed, People from nearby villages also came there in good numbers. The District Commissioner, his wife including other Government Officials who Vicky knew so well, arrived. The Headmaster, all teachers , students they were all there. People cried on the street. It was a kind of scene no one has ever witnessed in the town.
“I wish all families had a jewel like Vicky” , the District Commissioner's wife told all the ladies as she was consoling Vicky’s mother. His father was speechless. Everybody stood there for hours grieving for their Vicky who they all loved so dearly !