Do you remember the 1st of January? I had made a resolution that I would tell you about each one of my days, in as much detail as possible. Some days I wrote to you, and on others I kept to myself. Tonight, we are going to have a talk.
It’s sometime past midnight right now. I did what I do every night-a glass of milk, my kindle and a huge blanket. But nothing worked. I remember the times my eyelids used to droop down with exhaustion and I would be asleep in no time. But now, it doesn’t happen that way. My eyes are wide awake as if its the last time they can see the surroundings.
If there is one thing I regret doing, its saying yes to that night’s party. I know, I know. Its been more than six months. But how do you expect me to be normal? With all that has happened since that day, everything makes me doubt my existence! When everybody will know the truth tomorrow, I’m sure they all will support me.
Tomorrow is our review meeting. I have managed to complete the “toughest” project of designing the city’s communication systems using the most recent technology which can change the way we communicate with each other. But I am also responsible for something else. I have not discussed this with anybody till yesterday because I felt that pushing these thoughts away would really work well for me. But its true what they say, you have to face the truth someday or the other. I guess this is my day to face them all at once.
I have to do the right thing. I cannot and I should not keep quiet when I can see my seniors doing something wrong on purpose. When I was in the office party, after sometime inside the room I decided to leave the room for a bit. So I stood outside the doors of the party hall to get some peace from all the loudness. There were two cars in front of me. My boss, the CEO of the biggest telecom company in the country in his car, and the chief of the department of telecommunications in the other.
At first, I didn’t even think that they were meeting with each other for something else. I could only think of our project that needed a head-start from the DOT. There was a period when all of our projects to increase communications in the rural areas were rejected by the department, stating extremely weird reasons. The CEO didn’t do anything at that time; he only inspired us to push harder and develop a project that would satisfy the government.
They got down from their respective cars and met each other with a warm hug-as if they were well known to each other since a long time. I know, at that moment, I should have gone back into the room. They were meeting in private so it was something confidential and I had no business to pry over them. But the chief pulled out an envelope—which looked like something wrong was happening. I decided to stay, so I hid behind one of the cars parked near the place where they were standing. I saw them laughing at something the CEO said, something along the lines of “get this project not done, again”. They were talking about the communications project that was due in seven months’ time; I was appointed as the lead project manager. It dawned on me that the reason why our projects were getting rejected wasn’t that we were not working hard enough. Our projects were made to look weak so that they could get rejected.
It made me angry. Ours was a team full of talented people who could have easily rejected this job because of a better research opportunity, but everyone stayed. They wanted to do something that would benefit every person, not just one particular class. But here was the CEO himself, selling out his own company’s projects for unknown reasons.
At that moment, I didn’t know what to do. So I froze to my place of hiding and listened to their entire conversation, which made a lot of things clear to me. When the party got over, I took it upon me to find out the real deal between them both. I had personally made some inquiries of people and got them recorded as well. From what I could gather, The CEO and the chief were both from the same college. They had spent their initial years after college at a start-up, unsure of what to do next. One decided to join the government while the other remained in the private space.
I wanted to know what led them to this stage. A common thread between them both was a college professor, who mentored both of them back then. He is retired, lives in a small apartment in the city with his wife and does not have any children. When I met him, he said that they were the most brightest students in college, but extremely reckless at the same time. It was always arrogant behavior that got in their way of achieving something big.
But how was this relevant to what I wanted to know? I needed to involve a professional investigator if I thought that there was something fishy going on. So when this private investigator got on board, he suggested that there was no reason for them to be mysterious about their meetings if they didn’t have anything to hide. Since that day, he has been following them whenever they meet, trying to get hold of their schedules, looking into all the persons they meet to know if something gets struck up.
And we did dig gold, around two weeks ago. It turns out that the chief and the CEO have abetted to pocket in millions of money as commission on account of approved tenders. Tenders, which cost the government less, so that it fills these men’s pockets more, all the while compromising on the tech involved in making these towers for communication. It still doesn’t seem true to me, maybe because I can’t see my boss as someone who would commit a crime, because that’s not how I had imagined him to be ever. Now that I have this piece of information in my knowledge, I’m not completely sure what to do with it—more like I don’t know how to let this slip out in front of everybody without leaving a trail. This is not what I’m an expert in; I don’t even know how this thing works. I should have gone back inside when I saw them both chatting, maybe it really is none of my business.
But what if they are earning millions out of these people’s hard work, and not delivering good quality service? This isn’t a right thing. Maybe I should tip someone in the auditor’s team about this, leave an anonymous tip with a strong enough evidence from our pile so that it doesn’t go unnoticed? I don’t know. My mind is bursting with a thousand different possibilities, how one small mistake could put my life in danger. What if this was real, and one of them finds out its me, and thinks that it would be better to shut my mouth by…
God! I don’t, I don’t really want to go anywhere tomorrow. I’ll stay home, I will call in sick, and stay home. Wait, what if it arouses suspicion that I didn’t come to the meeting? My palms are sweating right now, I can’t think straight! Oh dear God, what am I going to do? But if I do go, should I reveal everything tomorrow? Oh no, this is a mess I am not ready to be a part of…