AFTER POSTING MY LETTER, SOME HIGHER-UPS IN THE FINANCE MINISTRY PHONED ME TO SAY THAT THE BUDGET FOR SENDING TRAINEES TO THE U.K. IS CUT DOWN BY 25% SO THAT I CAN SEND ONLY THREE NOW ALTHOUGH THE SANCTION FOR THE FOUR POSTS IS LEFT AS IT IS. THAT MEANS YOU ARE NOT TOUCHED. I CAN'T UNDERSTAND THIS AT ALL.
I could no longer contain myself. I cut in to say, "Sir, I beg you to let me speak. You say something MYSTERIOUS has happened. You know, Sir, it is exactly for some such thing to happen that my heart has been crying out to my God. And if it had not happened, it would be mysterious to me. Sir, may I say without any breach of decorum that you are not the arbiter of my destiny. There is SOMEONE to arbiter yours as well as mine." The words spontaneously gushed out. I now know that it was Baba prompting me. Striding up to my side of the big table around which we were all standing, Maj. Priestly grabed my shoulder and, looking me straight in the face, exclaimed with some asperity, "You have the audacity and the courage to say that to my face, Mr. Ramaswami!"
"It is neither, Sir", I replied calmly, returning his look. "For, devotion to Baba enables one to acquire the freedom from fear to stare the world in the face even if it should have blood-shot eyes/ It is a conviction born of faith transmitted to me in the blood from generation to generation and crying for expression."
Still holding my shoulder he said, " You seem to challenge my faith in God, too!"
"As a Britisher, you can't understand my faith, sir,” I said "You trust God and keep your powder dry!" mine enables me to be unarmed without any rear. It is not a half, way house but complete surrender with complete protection in return."
He suddenly softened. Relaxing his hold and pattinq me gently on my back he remarked, "AH right, all right. I can see you are sincere. Though for the time being your position appears to be safe, let me warm you it may not be so for long. I am going back by the return flight to see the Defence Minister and tell him that I must have four U.K. trained men to being with and the cut must be