Can the pension system be fixed?

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Answer sheets

It was a classroom with a high ceiling. About thirty students are writing the examination, while ten desks are free. There is no noise except the occasional ruffling of papers. Birds are chirping outside the room. The sound of one pair of shoes is the only sound in the room. Then, suddenly, Professor Gangal announces that time is up, and we have to tie all the answer sheets and hand them over to him. After that, the quietness in the room vanishes. It starts with a bit of noise and reaches a crescendo in no time. Some students are busy answering the last questions, some are revising, a few are tying the answer sheets, and others are looking at the ceiling. I look at Annapurna and Rohini. The distinct smile on their faces conveys that they have done well in the accountancy examination. They look happy.
Accountancy paper is always a nightmare for me. I do not love numbers as others do, and the numbers haunt me even in sleep. While double-entry bookkeeping seems to be a simple process, I have difficulty solving problems. However, my neighbour Nitesh made me practice several accountancy questions in the last few days. Though I have done more than one hundred problems with different patterns, I am always at a loss when a question comes with a slight twist. I usually do not get the answers correct as I do not understand the question. A vast list of adjustments follows every question with a few facts and a lot of fiction. I am not like Kabir’s swan to intelligently separate the milk from water. I make assumptions that are not relevant and end up in a mess. Nitish tells me that I do not read the questions correctly. Read, read and read the question are the only three pieces of advice from Nitish.
Also, it is challenging to make corrections if I make a mistake. The entries need correction at different places. The process is error-prone and time-consuming with a manual approach, and I tend to create more errors.
I am repeatedly looking at my answer sheets, checking whether I have numbered all the sheets correctly. I scratch out the unimportant working sheets. Prof. Gangal comes around three times asking for my answer sheets. I do not have the count of extension sheets I have taken as I have the habit of asking the supervisor for additional sheets as if there will be a massive shortage of answer sheets. There is urgency and confusion in my mind. Finally, Prof.Gangal snatches the answer sheets and walks away from me. I collect and sort out the remaining sheets, wipe the sweat with my handkerchief and get up from my desk.
I reach home after walking a small distance, as there is fresh air from the sea near the Haji Ali mosque. Therefore, I choose to go home directly without sitting on a bench. Moreover, it is afternoon, and no walkers are around. Therefore, after reaching home, I freshen myself, change and go to the dining table for my lunch. The lunch is piping hot, and I enjoy the meal.
I go to my room, thinking about what to do next. First, I want to file the question paper as I do every day. But, I am shocked when I look at the pages. I have carried my answer sheets instead of the question paper. Then, I start sweating, and I do not know what to do. I change my clothes and rush out of the apartment with my answer sheets. I run to the main road looking for a taxi. I cross the street, find a yellow, black cab, and ask the driver to rush me to the college. The driver is surprised by my hurry and tries his best to reach the college in ten minutes. I see the lock on the main door, and security is sitting outside on a stool. The security guard tells me that no one was in the college, and Prof.Gangal left a few minutes ago with the answer sheets. He does not have the address of Prof. Gangal. Fortunately, I meet a professor who knows Prof.Gangal’s apartment, and he could drop me as he is driving in the same direction.
I am very nervous as I am approaching Prof. Gangal’s apartment. With papers in hand and sweating profusely, I gingerly ring the doorbell. No one comes out. After a minute, I ring once more, and Prof.Gangal comes out. He is in pyjamas and must be enjoying the afternoon siesta. He is surprised to see me at his door. He quickly realises that something has gone wrong and invites me into his living room. I explain my predicament to him while standing. He understands the situation soon and asks me to sit on a vacant chair. Then, without batting an eyelid, he goes inside the house and returns with a bundle of answer sheets. He asks me to look for my answer booklet and change the relevant sheets. I could easily spot my answer book, untie the thread at the corner. I remove the scratched sheets from the answer booklet and insert the correct answer sheets. After reassembly, I hand over the bundle to him. Prof. Gangal does not even look once at the sheets I included in the set. He offers a glass of water before I leave his apartment.
Trust is a great value that keeps the relationships intact for one hundred years, while mistrust destroys the same in a second.

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