Wednesday, July 06, 2005

License to (s)kill....!!!

I drive that powerful gas guzzling monster, that mean set of wheels....all right,all right, its a Kinetic Honda.But I reached 3rd year and needed a license to prove it.So, off we went to Gannavaram...some 12 kms outside Vijayawada.

For 25 painful minutes I watched wannabe Taxi drivers trying to drive sanely below quarter their lower speed limit of 70 kmph. Then I tapped the corrupt* RTA officer on his shoulder.
He said "what's the magic word ?"
I said " MCWG ".
I watched over his shoulder as he flipped thru the application forms with the dexerity of a pizza dough flipper. His face showed signs of incredulity.Perplexed as I was, I stared.My first clue came when he said " Didn't you pay the license fee ? ".My face registered an xpression of a dog whose bone was snatched out of its vice like grip.

How was I to know ?.Hey I am average citizen unfamiliar with procedures for procuring a license.And this vital info wasn't mentioned ANYwhere.How was I to know? Then my Dad suggested an 'ALTO'rnative He said "Lets Go".So we go'ed.

Anyway...12 kms later, we reached RTA Vijayawada and approached Helpdesk.
Help Desk said "Go to Counter No 3.Submit the form and Rs 300 for the receipt."
A very innocuous sentence.Exceedingly simple to follow unless there is a huge financial catastrophe.But the worst was yet to come.It turned out that there was no counter 3!!!Big Deal. In Indian govt offices, this kinda stuff is usual, so we scouted around. Of the 5 manned counters, we checked out counters numbered C3,the third counter from the left and the third from the right.This reconnaissance is in no way easy.Every counter is restricted from visual or auditory range by a queue of atleast 5 ppl.So results being unfavorable, we checked out the 4th one and lo behold it was the alleged Counter No. 3.How to deal with such situations, it turned out if you multiply the probability of the number of ppl before a certain Govt Office counter being 3 by the prime number 3 and factorize it, it yields that counter's number. Aha...that explains it.We were using the wrong prime.

So we ploughed back @ 60 kph on the NH5 to find the test circuit empty.(Pheww...more drivers and I would've kissed the bumper of a rushing truck on the conveniently situated NH).Well, the test was cursory.Probably the guy thought if I was so desperate that I drove 30 km then I deserved it.

But the RTA's processing is to be praised, the very next day I recieved my license by DTDC courier.Now that is what I call "Speedy Service".

*Corrupt: He had a Sony Ericsson T610 and it wasn't even 2nd hand.Probably a ?