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Friday, February 16, 2018
Tamilnadu Music and Fine Arts University (Part 1)
The month of June, 2012...Secretariat
While adjusting the files and folders gingerly on my lap I ran and reran all the important points in my mind for the umpteenth time - points vital in convincing CM for the creation of an exclusive University for music and fine arts.
Seconds rolled heavily into minutes. I vaguely observed the rich furniture as the freezing temperature in the wood pannelled room increased my nervousness. I shivered, wishing somebody would adjust the temperatures in the split air conditioners in the room. There was the usual hub of voices of partymen and other visitors talking in respectful whispers as the wall clock ticked audibly. Uniformed staff of the catering service moved about silently serving coffeee and snacks.
The room door opened swiftly and a group of officials walked in hurriedly towards me. There was a sudden hush as whispered conversations around me stilled instantly. I knew it was my turn and my heart skipped a beat.
A man came forward to hasten me, " Madam..." Before he could finish his sentence I stood up hastily holding on to my files and folders.
Smiling a bye at the other visitors in the room I walked fast behind the group of men as they led me to the huge closed doors of CM's chambers.
Top brass of the police department, ruling party members, photographers with cameras, media persons and bureaucrats stood in attendance around the doorway and a few smiled at me by way of greeting me.
I looked around anxiously for my bouquet which was taken away for security check ."Where's my bouquet?" I asked a security officer. Before he could reply a hand reached out the bouquet to me while the CM's chamber doors opened wide. A sudden flurry of activity took place as photographers and media persons hurriedly entered CM's chambers to take their respective places. Tense looking officials rushed towards me and hastened me , "please go, please go...." another voice whispered, " don't take too long, please finish quickly" I turned to look at him sharply recognising the unfriendliness in his voice. I shot him a half smile conveying effectively that I knew of his disfavour of my meeting.
In no time I was in front of Amma, her brilliant complexion and charisma taking my breath away as usual. She smiled warmly, her eyes shining with love and affection for me. " Please come, please come...." She said in her characteristically loud and clear voice. I moved hastily towards her and handed her the bouquet. Smiling, she took it from me and asked me to face the photographers for the customary photo session. Flashes went off instantly after which the media persons were led out of the chambers.
Amma gestured towards her table and I seated myself opposite her.
"So, how have you been?" She asked me in her striking voice, looking confident, happy and supremely self-assured.
" Fine Madam. I wanted to meet you to request you for something ".
She smiled indulgently, as a mother would at a daughter or an elder sister would at a younger sister, " Please tell me".
Always feeling encouraged, loved and happy by her affection for me I got up to handover the folders and files which I had prepared with great care for the creation of an exclusive University for Music and Fine Arts.
" Madam, I request you to create an exclusive and unique university for music and fine arts. You are an exemplary artist and a dynamic leader and it is my ardent wish that this University should be founded by you. This university will cover music and also every other subject that comes under fine arts. The university will provide job opportunities to so many deserving musicians and artists. Tamilnadu is a culturally rich state and the mega December music season that is conducted in Chennai every year is internationally renowned which is why a music and fine arts university should be founded in the city of Chennai. It is my wish that this University should be created by none other than you." I finished my monologue quickly, making best of the time constraint.
Amma listened intently and nodded " Hmm.."
She quickly ran through the first few pages of a file containing details of various music & fine arts universities all over the world, putting it aside she looked at a couple of other folders that contained supportive documents and material.
Keenly watching her I racked my brain for more convincing reasons to bring about an exclusive University for music and fine arts.
Amma looked up suddenly, " I can't go through all this now. I will read later."
My heart sank low worried that Amma was probably not impressed with the idea. I leaned forward anxiously determined to press forth my proposal.
She cut me short, " Done...."
I looked at her uncertainly.
She smiled at my confusion, " It will be done. Concerned secretary will be in touch with you." She added
"We will have a detailed meeting very soon."
Ringing a bell she summoned a photographer inside to click the action of myself handing over the documents to her.
"We should record important occasions. The University will happen soon." She smiled, her nod indicating that it is time for me leave.
I got up feeling dazed. I couldn't believe that Amma had agreed so promptly and readily and that too without any fuss or pomposity for the formation of a Music&Fine Arts University!
A slow smile began to spread on my face and I could see that she caught the excitement which was writ all over my face. She laughed and said with soft emphasis, "Very very soon!!"
Heady promise indeed! Celebration time!! I promised myself a huge ice cream....
Tamilnadu Music and Fine Arts University was about to be born!!!!