Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Driving License Needed…

Let' me first come to the main point : I DON’T HAVE A DRIVING LICENSE.ncr4

Well, I had one, but some crazy fellow dared to enter House No. 490 on 5th May 2007, and walked out unharmed, richer by 5 mobiles, my wallet, some 20 bucks, my PAN card, and my DRIVING LICENSE.

That was my first Driving License, it wasn’t a genuine one though. This little piece of paper made me 5 years older. Though I was born in the year of the BOAR, i.e, 1983, the date of my birth was shown as 1978. Whenever any one doubted my not being an adult, I would promptly show them my Driving License. With this forged piece of evidence, I have evaded so many fines and challans throughout India, mainly the North, South and the East.

Without it also, I have been able to survive the check posts of the Bangalore Traffic Police for quite some time. And I was very proud of it. Last week, somebody asked me, “How come you don’t have a DL?”

I said, “Dude! Who needs a license to drive in Bangalore? There are so many vehicles in Bangalore. You would have to be a very very unlucky guy if you are caught without a license.You can be booked for riding without a helmet, jumping red lights, driving without a number plate, and if you accidently happen to hit a policeman head-on. But you have to be the most unlucky person in the world, if you get caught for riding without a DL”.

And the next time I was riding a bike, well, I guess, I was the most unlucky guy in the whole world that night. Mr. Rwitam Mitra, had to be dropped at his house in Marathalli, for which we had to enter the Outer Ring Road. I was imagining how the cold winds would make me shiver when I will be on full throttle on the empty roads. But, before we could hit the deserted Outer Ring Road, Felix’s always-lit-pulsar’s-head-lights showed me a police waving his “danda” in-front of us.

Little did Mitra know about my loss of that fateful night. The first question he asked, “Tere pass hai na?”

I have hearts of steel, but I was not sure how Mitra would react to my denial. So, I said, “yes I have”. Just before hitting the brakes hard enough, I had second thoughts of using the throttle instead, but I changed my mind. So, we stopped.

There were 3 policemen. Each of them were busy attending to other unlucky people. One of them asked me for my License. I pretended to search my wallet hoping that I would find a pice of paper that would at-least look like a Driving License. Hehe…Seriously, I was thinking this…

But at-last, I gave up. Now the policeman asked me to hurry up and went away to another biker. There were around 5-6 people waiting to show-off their DLs to these policemen. So, we had plenty of time. Mitra did have a license, and we though of a plan. We swapped our roles. It was dark, and we put our brains to work. When the policeman came back, Mitra showed him his license, snatching the helmet from me. Hahahaha… 

The policeman took it and started examining it, asking general questions about our addresses and purpose of late night journey. Everything seemed to be working, till another policemen came along and stood near us. He smelled something fishy, and finally realized the anomaly. Shaaaaaah!!!! Caught again. They asked for the bike’s RC, pollution certificate and insurance, which Felix said, were at House No.490.

We knew what had to be done now. I started counting my money in my wallet in my mind. But, how were we going to make an open offer for bribe to this man? Mitra tried his best to convince them, that we were good people, and are aware of the mistake that we have committed and asked them to leave us just like that. That was not going to happen. I hope Mitra wasn’t very serious about such a thing happening.

Finally, the policeman asked, “How much do you have”. Mitra answered first. “40 bucks”…

What the hell!!!! Weren’t the pop corns and cold-drinks enough?? I had to pay here also?? Well, in the dark, I put my fingers in my wallet, and pulled out 2 notes, in the dark. They were 2 Hundred Rupee Notes. “Unlucky the second time”.

In 2 minutes, everything was settled. We were warned and let off. Just before running off, I thanked the policeman, and he replied, “No Problems Beta”. All the way, till I reached home safely after dropping off Mitra near his house, I was extra cautious, in the look out for another check point. But there were none. I guess, the clock had struck 12, and the unlucky day was over. Thank God!!! We were not drunk, else we would have been behind bars.

The next day, I searched the Karnataka Government website for details on how to obtain a DL. Realizing that I had to spend at-least Rs.200 and dont-know-how-many-hours, I thought, I would just avoid the check posts from now on. I still don’t have a DL.