The VOyes Story: French
While being an undergraduate student in the University of Delhi, I got first hand exposure to witness the rise of the call center industry in India. Along with English, speakers of the other languages were high in demand, especially for marketing research and back office jobs, there was strong demand for speakers of French, Spanish, German, Japanese etc.
In year 2000, me and Tanusree both got so impressed at the very possibility of getting a part time job while studying that we immediately got ourselves enrolled in the Alliance Francaise de Delhi. In chilly winter and through-out the harsh, dry and hot Indian summer – we took public transports and all other sorts of available vehicles to make a nearly 2 hour long journey each way, thrice a week, from our campus to the other side of the Indian capital to learn the language of love – French.
In no time four years passed by and the pursuit for excellence in French not only landed me the Diploma certificate but also I had gathered some fantastic memories as an active student of the Alliance Francaise de Delhi. Especially my participation in the Operation French Nightingale – an all India singing competition in French – was a memorable experience when I became the winner in the Delhi region to represent the Indian capital in the national level of singing competition in French.
I could not win in the nationals however the journey and the exposure that I got, being a Bangladeshi student in an Indian university, learning French and representing the Indian capital in the national level in a French singing competition – was a seriously unique news during that time.
Learning French paid off immediately for me and Tanusree as both of us started working part time in various Business Process Outsourcing offices in the outskirts of Delhi. We used to call French speaking countries in Europe such as France, Belgium & Switzerland to take interviews of senior executives in French.
After returning to Bangladesh in 2003, I started to teach French to students in Bangladesh both in Alliance Francaise de Dhaka and also privately. Now as a full time Londoner, I have been busy doing freelance translation projects since 2008 and have completed more than 2500 assignments related mostly to asylum cases of Bengali speaking applicants in France.