Pappu Singh, a resident of Delhi, was admitted to hospital after complaints of acute chest pain and shortness of breath while he was preparing his monthly transportation budget.
The incident happened when Mr. Singh asked his son, Sonu Singh, for a calculator and the latter pointed out some serious errors in his calculation and offered to help him with it.
Mr. Singh was aware of the fact that he wouldn’t be able to use his car on odd dates as his car’s license plate ends with an even number. Hence, he roughly added 15 days of auto fare and 15 days fuel charges to his household budget. However, his son informed him that he had discounted too many crucial factors, and then created a flowchart outlining a list of probabilities, demonstrating his prowess.
Beads of sweat formed on Mr. Singh’s forehead as things started to get more challenging than he had anticipated.
“An odd date could fall on a Saturday when you will have an option to stay at home,” Sonu proclaimed.
“Yeah, say 5 Saturdays a month,” Mr. Singh interjected.
“Nah, either 2 or 3 Saturdays every month on odd dates.”
“But Kejriwalji might stop this experiment after 15 days.”
“We cannot predict what is in the mind of a person who wears mufflers in June. And by the way, even if he stops the experiment after 15 days, it may not make any difference to the number of Saturday in a month,” Sonu pointed toward the calendar and added, “Moreover, you might forget it’s an odd date during weekdays and go out in your car.”
“How am I supposed to forget my car’s registration number?”
“It’s very much possible. People don’t remember their cars’ registration numbers all the time, and I said you might forget the date not the registration number. We still don’t have odd or even date calendars in the market to remind you when you can use your car.”
“Yeah but look at the brighter side. If I drive my car on an odd date and cause an accident, I can blatantly deny later.”
“That’s an unrealistic scenario. What is more likely, though, is you paying fines.
“Yeah, 2000 rupees.”
“At every signal. The rule clearly states that those who break the rule will have to pay 2000 rupees every time they are caught. So, the odds of you getting caught 5-6 times are alarmingly high.”
An excruciating pain radiated through Mr. Singh’s chest as he fell off the chair. He was immediately rushed to the nearby hospital where he is currently recuperating.
When we asked Mr. Singh the reason why he was petrified of the odd-even rule, he handed us the flowchart without uttering a word. Here’s a scanned image of the flowchart which his son created:
We wished him a speedy recovery but he looked into oblivion and said he would stay in the hospital till 15th January.
Meanwhile, a few coaching centers have sprouted up in the city exclusively to train individuals on probability of compound events to help them calculate their monthly budgets correctly.
Also published here
Also published here