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Khidki (Window)

–Read India Initiative—

This is only an attempt to create interest in reading. We may not get the time to read all the books in our lifetime. But such reviews, talk and synopsis will at least convey what the book is all about.


By Ravinder Singh

Publisher: Penguin Metro Reads

Year of publication: 2016

    At times one wonders what life is all about. If love is the bulls-eye in the game of life then one needs to define love. Love, often reminds you of marriage, duty, emotions, attention, aspirations, bindings and possessiveness on one hand. And independence, liberation and ambitions on the other. So then, where does the buck stop? And mind you the tussle between love and life is primordial.

    Well … Ravinder Singh tries to unravel these answers, in this book of his through the triad of Naina, Aarav and Manvika.

    But first the storyline which isn’t very meaty. One can say. It’s like some old Bollywood flick. Naina Singhania is the wife of (Sid) Siddharth Singhania. Her marriage to Sid is an outcome of their parents being family friends. Sid is a builder attempting to expand his father’s business. They stay in a posh apartment in Gurgaon.

    Naina, though smart, educated and even well-read is married into this family that somewhat has a traditional mindset. She leads the life of a traditional bahu and housewife along with her super busy husband—who is even a golfer.

    Sid is highly ambitious and in this pursuit, he knowingly or unknowingly tramples on the aspirations of his wife Naina. Naina after her marriage has become somewhat plum. So she joins a gym where she comes in contact with Manvika. Manvika is from the media world—a TV anchor who conducts TV debates.

    Then, there is Aarav who is young and handsome. He happens to be the gym instructor, as well as the personal trainer of both Manvika and Naina. When Naina comes in contact with Manvika and Aarav, the hitherto dormant storm of aspirations in her stirs up. She begins to feel more vehemently about it. And somewhere she starts blaming Sid for it. Her loneliness accentuates, when Manvika who is very forthright and individualistic and a hardcore women’s lib activist stokes the fire in her.

    The trio of Naina, Manvika and Aarav meet in the gym, almost daily. As a result Naina falls in love with Aarav. Where, Manvika prompts Naina to live life, on her own terms, for there is only one life. Then there is a long conversation and discussion between Naina and Manvika on adultery which doesn’t result into anything tangible in the novel.

    The novel climaxes when all of a sudden Sid is forced to cancel his anniversary trip to Maldives, just as, he had to postpone his honeymoon trip, because he has to fly out to a different destination abroad to meet his investors.

    This breaks Naina emotionally. When her love for Aarav finally unleashes to its zenith. In these difficult times Manvika guides Naina and pulls her out of deep depression. Finally, Naina gathers her guts to voice for a divorce, citing reasons that anyway her marriage remains an unrealised dream.

    It is not very clear in the novel, whether, Naina has decided to join Aarav who has moved to Canada for a course on physical education. Aarav is matured enough to understand the intricacies of attempting to marry a lady who is already married.

    The book finally winds up with a lot of ifs and buts. Where, the author finally puts forth a question for the readers on the definition of adultery.

    Finally, while reading the book my mind was filled with the following thoughts.

    The book is some 232 pages but is extremely slow and not at all moving.

  • It gives you a vivid description of how a gym operates with all its technical nomenclature. In fact the story commences from the gym.
  • Since the book doesn’t have an interesting storyline. It often tunnels through a boring prose and at times even zooms into the ambits of soft porn—and that could be the prime reason for its sale.
  • The book caters more to the younger crowd in the range of college students.
  • It dwells on women’s emancipation.
  • Author has played well with the words in this book.
  • It is deluge of gym-gym and gym and … also emotions—emotions and emotions.
  • It has long monotonous conversations of the stale kind that the society has been dealing with from time immemorial. Nothing is new.
  • In fact up to page 90 the story hardly moves.
  • Even the build-up of love affair between Naina and Aarav consumes about 84 pages.
  • Conversations are well described but then they are over detailed that exceeds the attention and interest span of the present day reader—something like unwanted detailing when Aarav goes to a salon.
  • As a male author he has describes female emotions quite well.
  • Lot of research has gone into fitness. The author also uses certain posh terms when it comes to garments and ladies dresses to build up that snob value.
  • The book is a romantic song without melody.
  • There are also some psycho battles in it.
  • Deals with a lot of day-to-day aspirations such as how to keep looking good, always.
  • There is a tussle between work and wife that Sid faces and which is quite common.
  • The surrounds and ambience becomes a bore as the book is merely confined to the gym and the mall

     Finally it’s a novel that tries to convey a social and emotional message for a tussle that is age old.

    I would give this book 5 out of 10.

Synopsis by Kamlesh Tripathi




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By Kamlesh Tripathi


Court’s Stand Puts Pressure on Centre- Cabinet likely to take up bill

New Doc 6_1

    Supreme Court as usual has done extremely well. In coaxing the centre to have a re-look at the law. Providing mild punishment to juveniles when they are involved in heinous offences. In fact the Supreme Court has requested Parliament to differentiate between juveniles involved in innocuous and serious crimes.


    In today’s day and age. Children mature much faster. And, from an early age of around eight to ten years they learn to handle mobiles, smart-phones, Tabs, Computers and even NET-surfing. They go global to compete with the best or the worst of the world. They do not dwell so much on the noble values of their parents. But get more influenced by the heft of materialism. The strings of loose morals that manifest in their parents and families.


    A case in point could be Aakash in Gurgaon. Who could not be reformed as a juvenile. Recently he was held for a second murder at the age of twenty one. The first being at the age 14. When he killed his school mate with the revolver of his macho dad. That he carried to school.

    Read, the column below that appeared in TOI recently; an eye opener.

GURGAON: Gurgaon Police has arrested Aakash (21) who shot his friend dead in a city market on March 25. This was Aakash’s second murder. Seven years back, when he was only 14, Aakash had smuggled to his school – Euro International in Gurgaon — a revolver that belonged to his father’s friend and shot dead a classmate with whom he had a scrap a few days back.

According to sources, acting on a tip-off, a police team carried out a search operation around Sultanpur Lake on Sunday night and arrested Aakash alias Ashu and his three associates from a Mahindra Scorpio which was parked there. He evaded arrest so far by hiding in parts of Himachal Pradesh and then in Rohtak district. Cops recovered two illegal pistols from the vehicle. On Monday morning, all four accused were sent to three-day police remand by a city court. “All the accused have confessed to their role in the murder. We are questioning them further and hope to solve the case soon,” said Ved Prakash Godara, DCP (crime).

In his confession, Aakash reportedly told cops that Manish Kumar alias Bihari (23) repeatedly tried to kill him after a dispute over money, leaving him with no option than to kill him first in “self-defence”.
“Aakash has told us that more than a year back Manish sought his help in recovering around Rs 1.5 lakh from a third party and promised to share the money. Once Manish got the money, he refused Aakash his share and they had a fight over it. Aakash claims once Manish forcefully stopped his car with the intent of killing him but he escaped narrowly. Another such attempt was made during a friend’s wedding in Manesar,” an investigator told TOI.

Aakash then planned to kill Manish with the help of three other friends, one of whom is undergoing trial for the murder of a village sarpanch in 2011.

The three aides have been identified as Ashok alias Mental, native of Gijhi village, Manjit alias Monu, resident of Titoli village in Rohtak, and Manish alias Moga, native of Dundahera village.

While Manjit and Manish have no past crime record, Ashok is undergoing trial for the 2011 murder of Dalbeer Sarpanch of Nayagaon-Nayabas village in Rohtak.

On March 25, around 9pm, the accused came in a car and shot Manish Kumar at point blank range while he was eating momos at a stall in Sector 21 market. The victim, a native of Muzaffarpur in Bihar, himself was a history-sheeter and had been booked in several cases of murder and theft. He was recently released after serving a jail term for attempting to murder a lawyer in Kapashera.






Some men are crooks, but most women are holy angels. But nothing is sacrosanct as trends could be changing, especially in Delhi Metro, and that too just for a seat. For on a day when I was travelling from Rajiv-Chowk to Huda-City-Centre, Gurgaon in a crowded metro, I witnessed something quite demeaning.

I had just boarded the over-crowded metro from Rajiv Chowk when a lady appearing in her mid-thirties, more from the rural background came and stood next to the vestibule. Not very far from where I was standing, but very close to the two-seater generally reserved for senior citizens or the differently-abled, near the vestibule. She suddenly squatted on the floor, when people thought she was perhaps unwell. Mind you,Delhi metro otherwise doesn’t allow you to squat on the floor. And after a short while she started nudging the old man on the senior citizens seat, to vacate the seat for her, as she was not feeling well.

The frail looking senior citizen looked at her, somewhat dismayed. And in all sincerity and to help the young lady; he offered his seat by getting up. The lady without losing any time and even without a word of thanks or a grin or even a twitch on her face slipped into the seat by just sliding up like a snake from a squatting position as if she was not able to walk. I surely found this weird. All this happened just around Central Secretariat station. She then just closed her eyes to dose off. And this gave me a feeling as if I was watching some kind of a skit. The old man then moved to where she was squatting and rested himself against the side of the metro while standing.

In the jam-packed morning metro no one had the eagerness to notice anything like this as everyone was too busy thinking about the day ahead: thus planning for it; barring the old man who perhaps was troubled, and me who just by chance happened to witness the proceedings happening in very close proximity.

By now the metro had come out of the underground, and had moved ahead, towards Qutub Minar station, as if to welcome the morning sun in the freezing winters of Delhi. Just then I churned myself a bit, more to comfort myself, as I was brutally sandwiched between passengers, is when I had an eye contact with the old man who seemed quite uncomfortable. But then I thought, being uncomfortable is definitely a lower priority than being unwell. And the woman was still resting, with her eyes closed.

On seeing her, I too decided to shut my eyes for a couple of minutes while standing. Thinking it will give some comfort and will make me feel fresh. Just then the metro announced ‘Chattarpur station’ and started slowing down. With the announcement the lady opened her eyes, she was now wiping her face with her hanky trying to look fresh and even applied some perfume out of a miniature. She then gathered her shawl and coolly started inching towards the exit door by nudging men to make way for her. And by then the metro had stopped at Chhatarpur station. Where, she got off and started running ahead of men, to catch the lift. No one could have said she was unwell. I glanced at the old man, only to realise he was where he was. I then looked at the seat vacated by the lady. It was occupied, but this time, it was an old lady–thankfully a senior citizen.

And, all is not fair in love and war. For, once when I was returning from Huda City centre, Gurgaon to Rajiv Chowk. I was again standing near the vestibule, where, the two senior citizens seat were occupied by two girls, perhaps college going. One out of them appeared to be all by herself and apparently from North-East. The other appeared to be a local with her boy friend; and while she was seated, her boy friend was standing right in front of her, in quite a lovey-dovey mood early in the evening; surely not gelling well with the ambience around.

At MG Road, an elderly looking senior citizen couple got in and walked towards these girls–rightfully for the seat. While the girl from North-East coolly got up and gave the seat to the elderly lady; the boy friend of the other girl told the elderly gentleman ‘she is not well so she won’t get up.’ The poor old man had little choice but to keep standing.

But the boy friend’s lie was more than evident when every now and then, and under some pretext or the other he was groping his girlfriend. Trying to hold her around the shoulders, fondling her lips or even caressing her hair, and the two were making the ambience look sick.

After about twenty minutes they both got off at INA market and disappeared holding hand in hand. That clearly showed she wasn’t sick. The empty seat this time was immediately occupied by another young lady but without a boyfriend; even before the senior lady who was already occupying the seat could pull her senior partner to occupy the vacated seat. So he remained standing again.

And this is what came to my mind. Some men are crooks, but are most ladies angels? Or is it that some men make some ladies crook? Or ladies now want to compete with men in crookedness? That apart, but what is more saddening is, just to grab a seat and that too for a while one can fraudulently declare herself sick and go the extent of snatching the right of a senior citizen. So are most women Angels? Can I say no?