Of Students and Their PDA

December 09, 2006
Nyayapati Gautam

One of the things that has fascinated me these few months in Hyderabad is the rapid change that I have noticed. The change is apparent not only in the monstrous "new-age" buildings that have sprouted all over the city or the flyovers but the open Public Displays of Affection that I see in certain areas of the city. When I stayed here in the eighties such things were unheard of. Come to think of it even an open mingling of sexes was something that was not all that common

One of the pleasures that I now have is getting out of the house at 5.00 am to reach my class at 6.00 am. I teach a motley group of topics (and in my opinion do a damn fine job of it) to those who aspire to get through the recruitment process of the IT biggies. But it is not my superlative teaching that I want to discuss but certain activities that one notices in secluded corridors of the classroom blocks where I teach.

All sessions end at 8.00 am but it depends on individual lecturers when they finish the session. And that day my lecture happened to be the only one on the third floor. As the other sessions got over a bit earlier the students had trooped out dutifully except for this enterprising couple.

Placing themselves strategically at the top of the stairs, where they had a view of both the corridor and the staircase, they were busy in a world of their own. A world that saw a lot of entangled limbs and paws. Now in spite of their strategic location they made a simple but egregious mistake. They forgot that there was a third floor and chaps like me were likely to walk down those steps any moment.
Anyway to cut a long story short, I caught the couple in flagrante delicto. And that is where the fun started. Innocent me saw them and took a second or two to figure out where the guy's hands were and why and why the young lady was standing at the top of the stairs in such an arched position.

Of course gyan dawned immediately but I kind of ignored them - as much as it is possible to ignore happenings of this nature - and continued to walk down the stairs. That is when the dude saw me, noticed I was a "Prof" and then took off like a scalded cat leaving a rather bewildered, backwardly arching young woman.

She then saw me and ran down the stairs onto the corridor. By the time I got onto the corridor I noticed that the guy was making good progress at the other end with the girl just a few steps in front of me. As soon as I caught up with the girl I obviously had to decide whether I should play the Prof who is scandalized by this behaviour and who threatens to "call your parents" or be the cool dude Prof who winks and lets it go. I, unfortunately, decided to "dialogue maro" a bit and said, "Discretion is a better part of amour" and walked away.

I know, I know. Not terribly inventive but that was all I could think of on the spur of the moment. And please remember I was quite taken aback too.

When I was thinking about the episode, apart from kicking myself for not making a better comment and wondering whether I should report the two to the "authorities", I did wonder about the behaviour of this dude.

I mean, here you are caught while necking your girl and the moment you notice a figure in authority you take off. What if I had decided to take the young girl to task? Given the general climate of intolerance exhibited when dealing with young couples and the environment of moral policing, quite frankly, I could have made things quite messy for her. Just cannot figure this out.

Call me old fashioned or whatever you will I still think that this dude should have held his ground and in the unlikely event that I did say anything should have been in a position to cover for the girl and taken the rap himself. But he did quite the opposite. And to think that the girl was almost threatening him with words like, "come back or I'll kill you" while walking along the corridor

Well! Maybe I am wrong and that is the way to handle things.

Welcome to the New Age (Indian) Man.

I am just another average 30+ chap with a view on everything around me. Politics, women, sports, work, travel, India and its place on the world stage - you name it and I have a point of view. And I would like to share it with as many people as possible.
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Of Students and Their PDA


Author: Nyayapati Gautam


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December 9, 2006
05:00 AM

PDAs have long been there in the scene - the degree of visibility is increasing by leaps and bounds these days, IMHO. If you parked yourselves on the Elliot's beach in Chennai for a couple of hours, you wud see a wide variety of such displayes, ranging from the hush-hush type to all out ones.
Kali kaalam!! ;)

December 9, 2006
10:38 AM

I think your response was just fine. =]

December 9, 2006
04:10 PM

Are we not mistaken here? This is not 'Public Display of Affection'. PDA is : a peck, a lip lock, a hug, holding hands etc. in flagrante delicto, arched backwards, hand positions suggests that the crime at hand, caught red handed was much more than PDA. If that is the case, it tantamounts to public indecency punishable under law. Even given that -- you did just fine Prof.

As far as pure innocent old ishtyle PDA, we Indians are guilty of not doing enough of it. Much happens behind closed doors as the billion speaks for itself.

Deepti Lamba
December 10, 2006
03:56 AM

Knowing me I would have told them to get a room!

December 10, 2006
11:58 AM

Would agree with Deepti

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