Vineet was very happy that he could get a suitable name for their unique club. He along with his other four friends namely, Anuraag, Bhargav, Chaitanya and Dhruv had started a ‘give back’ club as a tribute to their Guru --- ‘Moorthy Sir’. Their policy was --- Each one had to adopt ten dull students …. Dull not by their brains but by their attitude, then motivate them and coach them free of cost and bring forth their talents to the forefront. The caption V5 Ours 50 was very small catchy and attractive. All in the group had unanimously agreed and felt proud to be part of V5. Prompters five and students fifty.
They never expected that the very attractive catchy name would land them into a new problem. But that was what had happened. Somebody had lodged a complaint with the Police that the title V5 Ours 50 was deliberately used by the group for teasing them. Unnecessarily hurting and humiliating others’ sentiments were not warranted. Hence, they should be taken to task and suitable punishment should be awarded to them as a befitting reply. Vineet got baffled by this turn of event. When Police enquired, he simply had to draw a blank face. He told them he had least idea about who they were and what they had to with the title and how they were insulted. As for as Vineet and his friends were concerned it was a club of five offering Guru Dakshina to their affectionate teacher Moorthy Sir. V5 represented the five friends and ‘Ours 50’ represented the ‘ten each’ adopted students of those five friends.
Vineet told the Police officer that one of his pupils was very sceptical about his father getting married for a second time and bringing a stepmother to him. Vineet had to counsel the boy and ward off his unwanted fears. He told the boy that the stepmother need not be a tyrant woman. She could as well be a nice and kind hearted lady. The boy was somewhat consoled and in the course of conversation he mentioned about his father being a member of ‘We Five Ours Fifty’.
“Sir, I absolutely do not have any idea as to what they do or what their goal was. Since the term We Five suited our purpose, I took it and adopted it for our group. By the way, the title We Five Ours Fifty was not registered anywhere and hence I cannot be blamed for lifting their title without their permission. Moreover, I have named my group as ‘V5’ and just V5 which is much different from theirs. Please make it clear to yourself and also make it clear to them that we have nothing to do with them nor with their group. Therefore, question of teasing them does not arise at all. If they still insist, I offer my sincere apologies. But we retain our title V5.”
Police was convinced about the genuineness of his argument and so the officer let him free. Now it was for the police to find out why the complainant was hurt and how he / they were humiliated by the title.
V5 started as a noble-humble group of selfless volunteers but now caught in mire. Vineet was worried. His Guru, Moorthy Sir never liked any publicity, lavishness or celebrations in his name. The unwanted publicity V5 got, due to police enquiries should not drag the group to a dead end. Vineet comforted his friends.
“Let us carry on as if nothing had happened. None of us did anything wrong to regret. We are on right path. Let us stick to it.”
Some two men came looking for Vineet. They said, “We are a group of five members. We are keen on starting a CHIT FUND Company. Peerless, Margadarshi, Sriram are great names in the field of Chit Fund company and are well established in that line, for decades. We want to emulate them and be a star like them. When we were looking for a suitable name, we came to know about your V5. We are quite excited about its easy and catchy name. Can you please grant us permission for using that name for our Chit Fund Company? Actually, we are enrolling around fifty members to start with. So, your slogan ‘We Five Ours Fifty’ goes well with our role and business. Please consider our request and accord your approval.”
Vineet and his friends were in awe. The name they chose for themselves, it appeared had gone viral in the society. ‘There is a demand. It is getting popular.’
They happily agreed. “It… I mean the name was not a patented one. So, no harm in your using it. But take care. We had a bitter experience. That should not deter you. Just a word of caution. Better beware.”
Vineet was walking down the road along with Dhruv to buy a text book for an eighth standard boy. Suddenly, Dhruv, tapped Vineet on his shoulder and drew his attention to a painter who was writing the names on a signboard in bold cursive letters. V5 on top and below were five different names of men, all starting with letter V. The names were written one below the other in alternate colours.
“Look at the name V5. We should have patented it. We could have pocketed some money. See, now there is one more case of V5.”
Vineet stopped and read the board. V5 on top and below were five names one below the other… Vilas, Vikas, Vishal, Vikram and Vinod. He asked the painter what it meant. The painter could not say much except that they were all doctors and were about to set up a polyclinic. What more was needed? That explained everything. Vineet and Dhruv shared a smile and proceeded.
“Without a board of our own and just on hearsay, we ran into a problem. Here is a team of doctors wanting to use the name V5. Quite likely they would be treating fifty patients daily. Hope it does not catch the attention of anyone. After all, doctors are agents of God meant to serve suffering patients.”
Not many days after, they again encountered with another case of V5. Anuraag told others about it. In his residential colony, there was a Christian family. They had recently moved into a neo-rich posh locality. Their house was well adorned and carried a great appeal to the local Christians. A strong and big idol of ‘Jesus Christ The Redeemer’ set up on top of their house, welcomed all. There used to be a spate of visitors coming and going. It was reliably learnt that the head of the family was a member of one group called We Five Ours Fifty. The short form was more popular …. ‘V5 Victor Vincent and Others’. One day that group got into cross-fire. A group of people belonging to some other faith lodged a complaint that V5 was deeply engaged in forcibly converting the non-Christian people into Christianity and getting huge amount from foreign Christian missionaries for such conversions. In the name of campaign and spread and development of Christianity in India, they were offering lucrative incentives to poor and gullible innocent people and convert them into Christianity. The charges levied on them could not be established. There was no arrest or legal proceedings against anyone of that particular group either.
Anuraag told Vineet, “See. Daily some dubious news or other is coming up on V5. It does not sound nice. It is not proving auspicious. Better we give up the name and fix something else to our group.”
Bhargav did not agree. “We may choose some other name. But what assurance is there that the new title we adopt will not be high jacked by somebody for their personal gains or misuse? We are treading on right path and we need not worry about what others are meddling with V5. I am fine with V5. Auspiciousness or inauspiciousness is not in the name or title. It is categorised as auspicious or otherwise only by the activities undertaken under that banner. By switching to a new name, we send a wrong signal that V5 is bad …. That is, we five of us are bad.”
Chaitanya, who was a silent spectator added his piece of information. “When a complaint was filed against us, like you people, even I was wondering. Why we? What harm did we do? Whom did we hurt? Then, from informal sources I enquired about the boy’s father who was a part of a group called We Five Ours Fifty. I came to know that they are subsect of a Muslim community, who believe in turning the whole world into a large community of Muslims. According to their doctrine, every male member in the group will have four spouses, so that they become a unit of five. Those four wives in turn will give birth to at least five children each. Such a family will then be having twenty-five members very soon, parents five plus children twenty. Even if no son born into the family, all twenty girls when married, will have twenty husbands. Thus, the original five of the family will have got forty additional members into their family fold. With at least one son or two and with their four souses each, soon they would attain their goal of fifty. Thus, their slogan of ‘we five ours fifty’ is strictly maintained by every member. If the father is lucky and has a few more sons, they also will have four spouses, in which case the number will go beyond fifty by those additional spouses. This is their technique of increasing their ethnic community. No conversion no compulsion.”
Vineet and others were stunned by the bizarre facts. Anuraag exclaimed. “What a radical group!”
Chaintanya offering his comments continued, “There are some more communities other than this Muslim group, who also follow polygamy. In some tribal communities, it is a common practice. In another example, in a remote village called Pandavpur, the system of polyandry is very common. Polygamy or polyandry, it is the society which decides the pattern. If the menfolk in the village go out of their villages in search of jobs, business or better livelihood, or when large number of men of a single community is lost in wars, the ratio of man to woman undergoes a change and accordingly the number of spouses a man or woman can have, is fixed. So, friends, ‘we five ours fifty’ also must have originated from such a formula only. We know that Islam originated in Arabian deserts and men had to migrate to other places for better livelihood. Those men who did not leave their places had married more than one woman.”
Bhargav interrupted. “Let them follow whatever they wanted to practice. Why accuse us for humiliating them?”
Vineet replied. “They must be upset that their well-kept secret was somehow disclosed to us. Their secret affairs are also known to us. They must have thought that we are fully aware of their principles and in order to make fun of their principles, we have deliberately named ourselves as V5. No wonder they filed a complaint against us. All religious groups are by and large fanatic.”
Just then few elderly men entered their hall. One of them said. “We are a religious group following Saibaba. We Saibaba followers have one ritual called Prabhaat Pheri. It refers to going about the town chanting hymns as a group, in the early morning, especially on Thursdays. We gather about fifty members so that the group retains its momentum. If you youngsters will join us our group members will be enthused.” So-saying, he handed out a pamphlet. Strikingly the headline read V5 (Om Sai) Ours Fifty.
All five members, Vineet, Anuraag, Bhargav, Chaitanya and Dhruv looked at each other. They wanted to burst out in laughter. With great difficulty they controlled themselves. Finally, Dhruv told those Saibaba followers,
“We are also members of a religious group. We follow a different religion. Our faith and worship are different. For us WORK IS WORSHIP. We believe in our work and that is our worship.”
Admiring the young men and their curt reply, the Saibaba followers went away after blessing them abundantly.
Vineet stuck to his old statement that “All religious factions are fanatic and we too belong to a religion now. But ours is an auspicious one. Isn’t it? Do you still feel we need to change our name? Can we continue to remain as V5?”
A chorus reply was in the air. “We are V5. Let us be V5. Any number of V5s may come up in town anytime now or later, we don’t care. We continue to be the same V5 as before.”
No doubt. Hail V5. Truly. It is an auspicious one.