Sushma Verma, a 17 year old child-prodigy, who is enlisted in the Limca book of Records, enthusiastically supports No Sir No Madam movement in India. She is currently pursuing doctorate studies in microbiology from Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University (central University). In addition, she was invited to Japan, where she took a part in an IQ test and came first.
Even at this young age, her life has given unique experience and interactions that continue to mold her into an amazing person.
Sushma believes that mutual respect is crucial between two people interacting with each other, no matter where you are. “Sir/Madam” terminology sets a tone where a person feels forced to respect the other person, even when he or she does not want to. She conveys — A lot of people willingly refer to their seniors with a salutation.
However, they do not hold genuine respect to their seniors and instead use salutations only to impress them.
She continues, “In any case, we all have a name that we identify ourselves with. It only makes sense to refer each other by our names while interacting with each other. Moreover, if you really want to be respectful to your seniors, you always have the option of referring them as “didi” or “bhaiya”.
Sushma shares her two cents on the customs followed by government officials. She speaks — We all are aware that people necessarily have to address the bureaucrats with salutations. Some of the officials are so stubborn that despite bowing down in front of them, they still refrain from acknowledging your work.
She suggests, to eradicate salutation practice from government offices, higher authorities will have to set examples for their juniors. Only when the senior leaders take initiatives to abolish ‘Sir/Madam’ practice, there will be the change much quicker and easily acceptable.
In continuation, she shares her experience of being in college with people older than her. Sushma verbalizes, “There is trend forming in colleges these days to address your seniors as “Sir/Madam”. Consequently, I used to follow it to refer my seniors. One of my seniors in college; however, ended up being in the same batch with me currently in PhD. So, I shifted from addressing her as ‘Madam” to “didi”. I noticed that now, I could communicate and form better relation with her.
Therefore, I reckon that people need to let go off salutation customs, so that we can be approachable and connect personally with each other.”
In conclusion, Sushma surmises — We can learn to be more productive and come up with innovative ideas when we let go off salutation edict. As we communicate with our peers and seniors, like friends; therefore, converse without any restrictions. Moreover, be bold of your perceptions and beliefs and continue to grow as a person and individual.