‘I Don’t Know What The Future Is Going To Be. You Are Bound To Be Scared’

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Jyoti Prakash, 30
Associate, JP Morgan, Mumbai

Jyoti Prakash
Photo: Deepak Salvi

When terminated, Prakash had been working as a team-leader, supervising six analysts in the credit department of JP Morgan, Mumbai. “Without the meltdown, they would not have any reason to fire me. I was performing in the top 10 percent of my department,” he says.

Now, at his Chembur West home, Prakash has found more time to read and watch “all the films I missed out”. He’s also taken up the saxophone to fill some of his empty hours. “After a while, being out of a job begins to affect your thoughts, but I’m still optimistic. I haven’t gotten into negative thinking yet,” he says. In some ways, the pink slip has helped Prakash rethink his career path. “I always wanted to quit service at 40 and start my own venture, but now I’m thinking of doing it in another five years.” He’s also actively considering formal education again to expand his knowledge base. After all, the more skills he acquires, the lower his chances of getting the boot again — or so he hopes. It has been almost two months, but he’s still waiting to hear back from other IT companies, where he’s applied for a job. He knows finding a mid-level manager position in these times of recession is near impossible, despite his willingness to take a 50 percent salary cut from his earlier Rs 20 lakh per annum salary.

Prakash never imagined living in Saubi Arabia. But now, he says compromises will have to be made

Prakash now fears that the retrenchment package he got from JP Morgan might not last until he finds something new. If push comes to shove, he might even consider leaving for the Middle East. But never had Prakash imagined he’d consider living in Saudi Arabia. “Compared to Mumbai, it is a very conservative place. But I can’t be rigid about anything. Compromises will have to made.” Already, Prakash has cut back on branded clothes, and cancelled his upcoming summer holiday to Turkey. “I’ve been married just for a year. This was something we were really looking forward to. But I don’t know how the future is going to be, so I’m only sticking to necessities. Somewhere, you are bound to be scared.”

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Special Correspondent

Tusha Mittal has been with Tehelka since March 2008. She was educated at La Martiniere, Kolkata, and has a bachelor’s degree from Depauw University in Indiana. While in the US, she worked as a reporter and a special sections editor for a local newspaper in Boston. She also interned with CNN Internationalin Atlanta and NBC Universal in London. In her final year in college, she studied the idea of peace journalism and the role of the media in covering conflict.

She travelled to Kashmir for her graduation thesis, which dissected the role of the Indian and Pakistani media in shaping public perception of the Kashmir conflict. Her journalism interests include reporting on environment, human rights, and conflict. She has recently won The Press Institute of India award for best articles on humanitarian issues published in the Indian media. AtTehelka, she has written extensively on land rights and displacement struggles. She is based in New Delhi.

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