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Espcex (Aman) 2016

Chapter 1 - Madras 1986


“He knows too much. I must ask you to do nothing.”


“But this time I caught him in the act. I have proof, witnesses, everything. There is no possible doubt.”


“I said he knows too much! The company can’t afford to have any problems. Our position is very sensitive in this country. We can’t afford to take risks. I am telling you once again – you will do nothing. And if there is any trouble, I’m afraid I shall have to hold you personally responsible. So be sensible for once in your life.”


“I see. So you are telling me to close my eyes to corruption and behave as if nothing has happened. Is that right?”


“I didn’t put it quite like that. But, if you insist, yes. What Vish does or doesn’t do is a minor matter compared with the company’s global strategy. Just try to get things in perspective. After all, you won’t be stuck in Madras for ever – I’ll make sure that you are not. So just go with the flow for a bit longer. When you’re in your next post this will all seem a very long way away, I can assure you. But meantime, no trouble. I hope I’ve made myself clear. Oh, and, by the way, I advise you to forget that we have had this conversation. Goodbye.”


Dick Sterling put the phone down. His hands were trembling. He was furious with himself for failing to persuade his boss in Delhi, Keith Lennox, to support him, and was disgusted at the mixture of veiled threats and vague promises Lennox had made.

Adapted from MALEY, Alan. He knows too much. Cambridge University Press, 1999. p.6



In the sentences “Our position is very sensitivein this country.” and “So be sensible for once in your life.” (paragraph 3), sensitiveand sensiblemean respectively

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