After initially working at Delhi for more than 2 decades I had to move to several other reigons in the country covering in the process Goa, Andamans and North East . While the initial understanding was that I would return to Delhi in 2-3 years times , the ex Delhi tenure has kept on stretching. Since several of my colleagues managed to remain at Delhi for longer period and also got back to Delhi after short stints outside Delhi I felt cheated sometimes and wondered whether this banishment from Delhi was fair. However after maturing through several destinations away from Delhi I could see the silver lining (pun unintended) and started wondering whether the craze for sticking to Delhi is not an indication of a self centered individual with an attitude which is not progressive .
Self centered because , although the job offers a possibility of rotation to various nooks and corners of the country but a group of people consider it their divine right to be posted to a metro city , by all possible manipulations or even if posted outside Delhi they would try to get a place of choice , such as one connected by land route to the country ( so that there is possibility of an overnight train to Delhi!).These divine righted colleagues forget in the process that by cornering the comfort zones they have pushed out many other colleagues in the sun and forced them to remain at the so called hard postings for longer period . The assumed difficulties of a hard posting would have appeared less uncomfortable and would not have been prolonged if all of us shared the hard areas on equitable basis.But for many mortals a posting in Delhi injects a feeling of power and immortality which somehow insulates them from grasping the essence of such mathematical analysis of a social issue.
The other aspect is that of being less progressive or narrow minded. While moving out from Delhi one is give subtle hints that the concept of a true nation state is also colored by feelings of regionalism in various parts of the country . However an open minded and mainstreamed person can easily understand that even in Delhi persons coming from other parts of the country need time to accquire respect and acceptability in their social circle. The same process of social acceptability can be expected at other places also . However once you move out and settle down the other benefits of being away from Delhi also become prominent.
First and foremost is the clean air and relatively tension free work style which prevails at smaller destinations . And then in due course of time one may (or may not) get to know a bunch of people who can be counted as selfless friends irrespective of their background. The quality and pace of social life varies from place to place but still social networkings are developed with ample time available for the same without burden of traffic related worries. The social groups though small ( sometimes very small in fact) are cohesive and homogenous and sometimes based on common interest in readings or movies (downloaded via internet). Natural beauty is always close on hand and if there is a good camera you can get submerged with flickr or Picassa. There is so much to learn about flora and fauna and lifestyle of tribes . And then there are so many opportunities for water sports , chopper ride , snorkeling and diving which a person in Delhi can expect only once or twice in a lifetime as part of some heavily priced vacation.
But…even with all above virtues there will always be a bunch of colleagues who are counting their days for return to Delhi and in the process creating a morbid atmosphere for silent survivors.The best course is to avoid such tear jerkers. In fact with internet and broadband having infiltrated everywhere who needs non virtual friends now.