NEW-RULEIt was just another day at school. I reached my school in the morning 15 minutes earlier by a bicycle. My elder sister who studied in same school actually rode the cycle; I sat on the carrier behind. After the assembly prayers we moved to our respective classes. It was a busy class for the fifth graders. The school management had recently come up with a new rule: “No moving out of the class even during breaks.” And the class Five was really disappointed.
The first period was mathematics, a really tough subject to start with. But it was not tough for me. The only thing that bothered was three boys sitting together on a bench each with a bag half their size for forty-five minutes without moving. And if anybody made a movement the teacher yelled, “Hussain, listen to the class.” That was strenuous. Next came another forty-five minutes of unease in “English”. There was a fifteen minute break after it but thanks to the new rule “No going out.” And to make sure this rule is followed a student from a higher grade was asked to monitor a lower grade class. Our class was monitored by a girl from my brother’s class. “Every body quiet, Arun sit in your place, Don’t make noise, blah blah blah ,” she shouted all the time.
The next two-periods were boring as a cow, boredom and uneasiness leads to frustration. Thank-God we had a lunch break next meaning we would be able to move from our place finally after three hours and fifteen minutes. I went out, had my lunch with my friends and came inside the class. The girl was waiting in the class. We both knew each other. I went out to sit on my place and place my box inside my bag. She continued her shouting; I think she too didn’t like monitoring a class when she could have gone out for playing. Probably that’s the reason she kept shouting. And then came the moment, I just turned around to take out a book from my bag and eventually stood from my place.
“Hussain, sit in your place!”
“I am just taking out a book from my bag, you donkey!”
‘Donkey!!’ now why did I say that word? I guess the fact that I couldn’t say that to teachers or the head mistress made me use it for her or that I knew her and thought that she would not mind. But she definitely did not take it for granted. Next moment I could see her go out of the class and come back along with P.T. Madam. She gave me two lashes on my palms and made me kneel down at the door with my hands up in the air for the rest of the lunch period. Every one who entered whispered, “Why is Hussain punished?” I saw the faces of my friends, some thought that it was my mistake, some thought of me as an arrogant boy and some thought, “Poor Boy!”
A few days later I realized that only thing that changed was some of the girls in my class have stopped talking to me. The new rule of the school remained.