From the land of simputer, the CETputer

E. R. RAMACHANDRAN writes: The plus-2 candidate was sitting in a small Cell of 5’x3’ preparing for the CET exam. I could hardly see him as he was surrounded with books, all around.

“Preparing for the CET exam?” I peeped in.

“Exam? I prepared last year itself. This is for other things connected with CET.”

“I thought all you do is, just write the exam and depending on your rank, they counsel and give you a seat and you start attending classes.”

“I wish it were as simple as that! For instance, see this ‘CET Watch’? Try it.”

“I thought ‘CET Watch’ is a table giving information on ‘Seats Allotted’ and the ‘Balance’ to be filled for engineering, medical and dental courses.”

“No, no. It is a regular wristwatch! Here, try this. This watch will give precise month and date when COMED-Y will raise objections to government’s proposal. It will show the likely dates, the government—if it still exists at that time—would reply to the objections. It will also give the month and date when Supreme Court will hear arguments from both sides. If you press this button, the watch will run anti-clockwise and you can see how many times COMED-Y and government are likely to reverse their stand.”

“I see. What’s this….? A calculator?”

“Yes and No. It looks like a calculator all right, but it isn’t. It is a computer; in fact it is a CETputer. It will show the seat sharing ratio for merit students, and those from backdoor quota. It has markings like 75-25, 70-30, 60-40, 65-35 etc… If you flip this button it will show the fees to be paid in the same ratio! If you turn this knob, it will change all data depending on the mood of the Chairman of COMED-Y. If you pull this thing, it will show the Moily formula with and without creamy layers! If you turn it the other way, it will show Arjun Singh’s wish figures.”

“What are these black books? Looks like legal case studies.”

“Yes, they are! These books give arguments of Karnataka government counsel, COMED-Y’s lawyers and Supreme Court orders. Couple of years back, both sides rejected the court order. This picture shows both sides sitting on the bench celebrating the event in Delhi after they reached an out of court settlement!”

“What are these brochures?”

“They give tariffs of all hotels and lodges of Bangalore—both normal rates and special CET rates which are 20% higher. I also have similar tariff cards for autorickshaws, taxis, tourist vehicles etc…”

“You have a list with heading “Counsellers”. CET Counsellers, I presume?”

“No, no! That’s a list of practicing psychiatrists of Bangalore with their cellphone numbers. Their services are also available at special CET rates! Last year we arranged therapy outside the CET cell itself for out-of-State students and their parents!”

“I must say your preparation is very thorough. I am sure you will get admission to the course and college of your choice.”

He laughed and said, “I am not studying any more. I have opened my own counseling firm, “CET Cell: In a Nutshell”! This will train students appearing for CET admission from next year on topics outside the syllabus I have just explained. Students studying XI have already booked their seats.”