Arrears – every anna university engineering student’s worst enemy. They decide to attack when you least expect, cling onto your marksheets like leeches, sometimes semesters at a stretch, sucking those precious marks off the aggregate which already lies below rock bottom. But worst of all is when they start multiplying like rabbits and your hall tickets turn into multi page documents, draining what little confidence you had in yourself and leaving your parents wondering if all those “my son is really intelligent, so engineering was the natural choice” at all those family parties was maybe a wee bit of exaggeration.
The suckers have hounded me since my second semester, where i made my debut into the club with an arrear in environmental sciences, the one subject even the tamil medium students managed to pass because all you needed to do was write the words pollution, contamination and environment a hundred times over to fill 40 pages to get over 80 marks. I, unaware of the anna university evaluating procedures wrote 25 pages of meaningful sentences, in neat bulleted points, and got my ass whipped when the results were announced.
The face hiding and suffering that went with someone who was declared a failure in environmental studies was unbearable. I battled sleepless nights trying to figure out how me, a foreign schooled child, who wouldnt as much as throw his nose picking on the road, be subjected to such shame while 3rd rate retards who thought smoking weed indirectly helps the trees by giving them more co2, were enjoying their happy lives with an “all clear” tag.
Then came the window of light – the revaluation. Apparently you pay the university 400 bucks, and once the gods who decide our fate have received the cash, they roll a die and on getting their lucky number of the day, give you a pass. The reval results come out a month later and that F has been magically transformed into a P, no sorry note included for the mental suffering you had to endure however.
And as i found out three more sems, 4 more arrears and 4 successful revaluations later, this is quite a smart arrangement by the AU folks, cause in the end everyones a winner, the university gets their 400 bucks for each paper sent in by a desperate student. And the desperate student is awarded with a P, and you even gain some experience being locked into your room by your parents as an added bonus. Its much like giving your dog a treat.
Quite simple, or so i thought until my fifth arrear last sem turned up a negative reval result. Something had gone wrong, my paper was the simplest of the sem and i knew id ace it. Yet, i ended with a shocking 12/80. But i had paid the university the 400 bucks they wanted, i had the challan with me and even licked the hod’s rearside for a recommendation and all i got was a “no change” in my reval?! Something had gone wrong, terribly wrong.
It was then that i realised, it all depended on the roll of that die.