At first, the management of my college wanted the students to finish and submit the project, which every final year students had to compulsorily write, by the 24th of December 2012. But then they postponed it to 26th of December. And on the 8th of January, 2013, we faced the Viva.
For those who do not know what a Viva is, let me say: Viva or Viva Voce is a spoken examination held at the end of a University Course. A good friend of mine had in one of his comments on one of my post asked me if I could write about the Viva once it is conducted, and I said I would be glad to do that. I am writing this here not just because that friend had asked me to, but because I know I need to write something. It’s not going to be everything but just the synopsis.
I wrote a project titled “Making Corporate Governance Meaningful”. The copy consists of seventy-nine pages (leaving aside pages numbered in Roman).
Corporate Governance, in simple words, means the systems, principles and processes by which a company is directed and controlled.
Globalization is the most current and demanding arenas where corporations have to define and legitimate the ‘right or wrong’ of their behavior. A lot of issues emerge in the process relating to cultural, legal and accountability. However, serious efforts have been directed at overhauling the system. Every day we read in the papers about corporate scandals, government failure, etc. A corporate scandal is a scandal involving allegations of unethical behavior by people acting within or on behalf of a corporation. Corporate scandals sometimes involve accounting fraud of some sort. If we happen to look at the list of corporate scandals around the world and particularly in India, the list can go and on, and it is startling!
Therefore, ethics can play a crucial role in making corporate governance meaningful. There should be a moral responsibility, which need not be necessarily taught, but it is something that comes from within oneself. Many everyday business activities require the maintenance of basic ethical standards, such as honesty, trustworthiness and cooperation. One must know the difference between vice and virtue. One must not think that the shareholders’ interest means the interest of all, nor can one compromise the rights of other stakeholders. Failure in Corporate Governance is a real threat to the future of every corporation; therefore, the auditing standard has to be improved. Auditing should comply with international standards.
Well, yes I had to refer some books while writing this, and I had to simply copy some of the things, because somebody has already written about the subject, and I had to simply reproduce that. How can I change something that really is! All my classmates did the same, but they, very shamefully, directly copied everything from other peoples’ project report.
If you simply type a certain topic on Google you get it. There are already a lot of project reports in PDF format over the internet which my friends easily access, and they very easily change the original author’s name, and copy-and-past, and produce the whole thing saying it is their own work! That, too, without changing or modifying the contents! Most of my classmates didn’t even understand or tried to understand the contents.
Writing the project, to speak the truth, wasn’t my cup of tea, though I learnt a lot. I have a good imagination power, and I like writing stories, mostly fiction, but partly based on reality. I am a realist, you see.
Shreyanshi Awasthi was the external examiner’s name. She spoke with me for more than 20 minutes, while with others she spoke not more than 10 minutes. We spoke about many things, apart from the project, ranging from the issues in our country; we spoke about nationality, language, literature, etcetera and etcetera. At one instance she asked me what my interests were. Among other things, I said writing is one. Then she asked me in which language I write. When I said English she appeared a little disappointed, and enquired why I don’t write in Bengali (which is my mother tongue) or in Hindi, which is spoken by most of us in India. And finally she asked me a few questions related to the project. How lucky I was! Though I read the whole project thoroughly but I knew what she would ask me (I assumed it). I was fully prepared for it in advance. And she did what I thought!
She was so much impressed by my answers that she asked me what grade I wanted. I answered, “Ma’am, whatever you think fit.”
“ Hmm m… alright!” she sighed.
“Could you mail me the softcopy of your project; I really like it, and would like to read more?” She asked with a smile on her face.
While parting from the classroom where we were having the conversation, she said, “Glad to meet you, Ramu Das.” She put her right hand forward to shake mine.
“Glad to meet you, too, ma’am,” I replied promptly. And firmly with my right hand gave her hand a manly shake.
Copyright © 2012 RAMU DAS