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The Salt Inspector
Namak ka Daroga is a simple story with a moral like most stories by Munshi Premchand. One of the takeaways from the story is that honesty and dedication to duty get their due reward even in a society ridden with corruption.
The story was first published around 1925, a few years before Mahatma Gandhi launched the Salt Satyagraha. The leading characters in the story are Munshi Vanshidhar, Pandit Alopideen, and ... salt. Yes, salt — a heavily taxed commodity in the pre-Independence era.
Vanshidhar has completed his education, and it is now time to look for a job. His father, who has knowledge and experience of the world, advises him to find a job that can earn him extra income over and above his salary.
Vanshidhar gets the job of a salt inspector, a position that can earn him a large extra income. Within a few months after joining duty, Vanshidhar has an opportunity to make lots of money fast. He catches Pandit Alopideen, an influential landowner, in the act of smuggling salt. Pandit Alopideen offers to pay as much as forty thousand rupees, which must have been a fortune during the days the story was written, to settle the matter. Will Vanshidhar follow his father's advice?
An Unforgettable Picnic
Love tortures! Of course, it tortures those in love, but it also troubles those who are not in love. I mean, a man who admires a woman can torment another man who is in no way a part of the love triangle. It is getting complicated, so let me narrate an incident that explains it better.
This incident occurred long ago. The office declared a two-day holiday for Diwali, and the colleagues decided to organize an outing. We made up our minds to spend a pleasant afternoon in peaceful country surroundings. The spot chosen was quite near, around an hour's journey by bus.
We hired a bus and headed for the place. There were around twenty of us; women made up for half the number. We had a wonderful time. A river flowed gently; there were plenty of trees; in short, it was a perfect setting for a film shoot. We had a wonderful time. We played games, danced, joked, and talked cheerfully; we forgot that a drab place called an office existed ...
PARTS × 4 = STRAP
If PARTS × 4 = STRAP, what is the number PARTS? That's exactly like my math-loving friend, Amol. He talks cryptically.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"Well, PARTS is a five-digit number where the letters are substituted for digits. So, PARTS can be any number; for instance, it can be 34568 where P = 3, A = 4, R = 5, T = 6, and S = 8. Of course, in this case, it is not 34568; I was just giving an example.
So, PARTS is a five-digit number where all the digits are distinct (no two of them are the same) and none of them is zero. When you multiply PARTS by 4, you get a number where the digits are reversed; you get STRAP, which is also a five-digit number. Can you tell what number PARTS stands for?
Some useful links for
- Union Public Service Commission - www.upsc.gov.in
- IIT-Kharagpur - www.iitkgp.ac.in
- Indian Statistical Institute - www.isical.ac.in
- Indian Institute of Technology Madras - www.iitm.ac.in
- Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad - www.iimahd.ernet.in
- Indian Institute of Mass Commission - www.iimc.nic.in
- IIT Bombay - www.iitb.ac.in
- Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad - www.ismdhanbad.ac.in
- Birla Institute of Technology, Ranchi - www.bitmesra.ac.in
- Central Institute of Fisheries Nautical and Engineering Training - www.cifnet.nic.in
- Indian Institute of Information Technology, Allahabad (Deemed University) - www.iiita.ac.in
- Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute, Kochi - www.cmfri.com
- Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai - www.tiss.edu