Mohan kept staring at the bundles and bundles of cash in Anurag Sir’s locker. His eyebrows touched his hairline not only in astonishment, but also in anger and despair. The sight of that ample amount of money brought back the bitter memory of his conversation with his master. It had taken place merely four days ago.
“Mohan, you have been working with us for the past ten years; you well know that I love and trust you like my own son. We’ve never considered you to be just our driver. I do realise that your need for 50,000/- rupees is genuine, but right now I don’t have the funds. Wait for a month, I’ll give it to you after thirty days.”
If Anurag Sir didn’t have any money, then what was this? The stuff in the safe looked like more than ten lakhs!!
Mohan was standing in front of the open safe, because Anurag had given him a file to keep in there. Just as he lowered the documents, his master’s voice drifted from the adjacent room while he was talking on the phone. He was telling someone, “I haven’t counted the money, nonetheless, I’m sure it must be correct.”
When Mohan heard these words, his honesty and loyalty dwindled; tempting him to pocket a couple of bundles. Anyway, who would know? Anurag hadn’t counted it.
However, the very next minute another set of words fell in his ears and Mohan stopped in his tracks. Anurag was saying, “Mr. Basu, have faith. Your money is completely safe with me. I shall personally hand it over to the builder. I know how hard you have worked for it.”
An unexplainable feeling overwhelmed Mohan. His thought of deception from a minute ago filled him with remorse. He couldn’t believe how the devil had enticed him, making him forget his years of reliability and bonding with Anurag Sir.
Quietly closing the cupboard, he walked away empty handed. Nevertheless, in the glimmer of the moment a realisation sunk deep inside him. More than one person’s trust was at stake with all the money that was there in the locker; the builder, Mr. Basu, Anurag Sir and his own. His heart was filled with relief, for this test of time had taught him a big lesson: The Price of Trust!
Shamim Merchant, Mumbai.