Many of the people in civil services suffer from a handicap. These people have seen little of professional life, seem less of private sector jobs, and seen only a few of joining letters. I hail from such a group, old and crusty and yet immature in the world of jobs, of interviews and group discussions. Regardless, however, most people fantasize about a their joyous jubilation at the reception of the joining letter, or fondness for the golden crest they imagine, the crisp and thick page, the neat printed alphabets deciding your destiny. Not for the civil servants. For the civil servants there is always a lousy impersonal letter with a curious and long number, filled with antiseptic words from an anonymous cleric. “The government is pleased to inform that…”… I don’t know who is so pleased. When I received the joining instructions for the Foundation Course in Mussoorie from DoPT, I did not think so much about this. I was already anxious to receive something, and when the notice came it was godsent. Now, many months older and wiser in the ways of the government, I was even more scandalized when I received a lousy official correspondence in the form of a joining letter from my state. I wonder if the people in government cannot afford some good paper to print on, and get a good printout on a crested paper. I wonder if those in responsible positions could not afford to put in their signature. For all I know, there is no way to prove if this really came from the government – there is no stamp, no crest, no watermark, no signature. An anonymous, impersonal letter copied to nine places, with my name coming in at seventh position. A letter typed on a sheet of paper the kabadi wala would refuse to take for making packets. Welcome to the land of babus!