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Updated: September 30, 2013 13:36 IST
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Making the right choice

KAVITA SIVARAMAKRISHNAN
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Rohit was sure he would score a centum in his Math exam. Until, he hit upon a tricky question. What could he do?

It was the day of Maths exam. Rohit knew he had worked hard and was sure of getting a centum. However, during the exam he was faced with a tricky problem. This problem would make a difference. He knew a centum was doubtful now. He thought, “What if I copied from my friend? A little copying will not make a difference and no one will even know. Moreover my friend is obliging too.”

Rehearsal

Despite all this, he could not bring himself to copy. After he submitted his paper, he went home in a rather glum mood. He wondered what it was that stopped him from cheating.

“Was it the same with young Gandhiji on that day?” he thought.

Rohit and his friends were rehearsing for their colony play on Gandhi Jayanthi. Rohit was to play young Gandhi. Grandpa accompanied him to the rehearsals. This year they were to enact an incident from Gandhiji’s schooldays.

When Gandhiji was in school he was known as Mohan. An Inspector was visiting the school. He dictated a few English words to test the vocabulary of he students. Mohan did not know how to spell the word correctly. His neighbour prompted him but he refused. His teacher too encouraged him to cheat. But he did not.

When the rehearsal was over, Rohit went home with his Grandpa, who knew that something was bothering Rohit. He told his grandfather about his exam and his grandfather congratulated him on not having given way to temptation. Being a freedom fighter himself, he felt proud of his grandson.

“It was your conscience that was bothering you,” he said. “Everyone has a conscience and it is this that follows us like a shadow. In your play, Mohan could have chosen to ignore his conscience. He would have got good grades. But then he did not because of strong inner values. As he grew older, these values stood him in good stead, and he was able to stand up against a mighty nation. He made an entire Nation wake. His commitment and devotion to the cause withstood the tests of time as it was built on the foundation of truth and integrity.”

Gandhiji’s experience in school made a deep impact on Rohit.

He felt he had made a wise choice. He knew that he had conquered his demons and his conscience was clear.

He could now do justice to the role of young Gandhi.

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