Tag Archives: shravan charity mission

BOOK CORNER: THE DEOLI WALLAHS: The True Story of the 1962 Chinese-Indian Internment … Joy Ma … Dilip D’Souza

Copyright@shravancharitymission

    ‘THE DEOLI WALLAHS—The True Story of the 1962 Chinese—Indian Internment’ by Joy Ma & Dilip D’Souza.

    The subject title was first published in 2020 by Pan Macmillan. A citation at the bottom of the cover page of the book by Pratap Bhanu Mehta an Indian Political Scientist says, ‘Humanly compelling, beautifully told … brings to light a forgotten chapter of Indian history, one we need to remember in these troubled times.’

    The title is an untold account of the internment of some 3,000 Chinese—Indians just after the 1962 Sino-Indian War. The narration commences with a long ‘Preface’ followed by the ‘Origins’ chapter which explains where these Chinese-Indians came from. It describes the Chinese debut in India in Achipur and Calcutta, to begin with, and later their migration to other parts of the country which slowly expanded for nearly 200 years after Atchew’s arrival—The first ancestor of the Chinese in India.  

    The title is a mid-length narration of fewer than 200 pages divided into 17 chapters plus Notes and Annexures. In Chinese, they refer to Deoli Camp as chap chung yin (Hakka) or chi chung yin (Pinyin) which translates into a ‘gathered-together camp’ or a ‘concentration camp.’ The Deoli Camp was also used for incarcerating Indian political prisoners and for prisoners of war during World War II.

    Just after the Sino-Indian War of 1962, about 3,000 Chinese-Indians were sent to languish in a disused World War II prisoner of war camp in Deoli, Rajasthan, marking the beginning of a painful five-year-long internment without resolution. At the time of war with China, these ‘Chinese-looking’ people had fallen prey to government suspicion and paranoia which soon seeped into the public consciousness just because their features were Chinese. This is a page of Indian history that comes wrapped in prejudice and fear and is today largely forgotten. But over five decades on, survivors of the internment camp are finally starting to tell their stories. So, is there an apology due from the Government of India to them is a point in question raised in the book.

    The authors of the book record these untold stories through extensive interviews of survivors of the Deoli internment. Through these personal accounts, the authors not only discover a crucial chapter in our history but also document for the first time how the Chinese came to be in India, how they made this country their home and became a significant community, until the war of 1962 that brought on a terrible incarceration, displacement and tragedy to them. The narration is primarily structured around the Chinese-Indian community, who open their hearts and minds to the authors. The Chinese-Indians were considered spies during those times of the Indo-China conflict. I know it for sure because I lived in Shillong then, where my father was a minister in the Assam Cabinet. But then the government had little leeway in terms of thinking otherwise.

    And now my observation on the storytelling. The narration could have been even more forthright. The language is plain English in easy to read format. Since the narration has many personal accounts it gives you a feel as if much is happening in the book but the general plot moves slowly. I particularly found the chapter titled ‘A CONTESTED LINE’ to be very interesting and informative. It gives you a good open view of why the Chinese conflict took place at all. After the Indian-Chinese were released from Deoli Prison they had a long struggle rebuilding their lives. Some stayed back in India and some left for greener pastures abroad. Not many would know that even a ship had docked at the Madras port to take the internees from Deoli to China the ones who were willing to go. The book is a gratifying mix of the China conflict and Deoli’s internment camp in the 5th chapter titled ‘WAR.’ But was there any sense in adding this chapter to the narration because to me it diluted the central agonizing story of those interned at the Deoli camp? However, the chapter titled ‘War’ does raise the Indian flag when it describes the Rezang La Ridge, the scene of the fierce battle that is still remembered in India as the lone glorious chapter in the otherwise depressing story of the 1962 war. But yes, the continuity of the story is momentarily derailed by the chapter titled ‘WAR.’ The book has some illustrating pictures of the Deoli barracks too. The narration lacks the flourish of emotions considering what the families of the protagonists underwent. The authors could have definitely scripted the narrative to be more emotional taking into account the sentiments of the protagonists. The narration of the central plot is not a continuous happening in the book. It is in staccato-bursts because of the several personal accounts. The sequencing of the chapters could have been better. The historical facts are engrossing and interesting when you look back. I guess the chapters don’t sequence well because of certain heavyweight chapters in between the normal chapters that override the main plot of the book but then they are vital for the consummation of the ultimate story. The plot reveals that the Indian Government’s approach towards the ‘Chinese-Indian’ in those times was not soft due to their being treated as spies.

    The authors have compared the Deoli prison camp with the Manzanar prison camp in the US where American-Japanese prisoners were housed during World War II. The book makes a gentle request to the Government of India for a ‘Chinese-Indian memorial’ to mark their trauma. The narration compares the Chinese-Indian prisoners of India with the Japanese-American prisoners of the US which is asymmetric. It highlights that a majority of the Japanese internees remained in the US after their release and even got an official apology from the government of the US after forty-six years, whereas a majority of the Chinese internees left India to start a new life in other countries and never got an apology from the government of India. Towards the end, the narration expresses a flurry of holistic emotions.

    As a reader, I felt the narration should have been more along the central theme of the book than deviating from it off and on or the sequencing of the chapters could have been shuffled when the authors had a meaty story to tell. Of course, the book is more like a personal account of several families that were interned.

    Buried under the ‘Himalayan Blunder’ of 1962 – the humiliating India-China war – is also a tragic story of many Chinese-Indian that is not known to most of India and was quietly ignored by successive governments. Did one know that Deoli in Rajasthan had an internment camp during World War II? Starting in 1931 the British used to detain various leaders of the burgeoning Indian freedom struggle. Five hundred freedom fighters from Bengal to begin with and then, in the 1940s, Jayaprakash Narayan, S.A. Dange, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Jawaharlal Nehru, B.T. Ranadive, S.S. Batliwala, S.G. Patkar and many others were detained here. In the National Archives in New Delhi, there are petitions from the wives of some of these men, asking for a maintenance allowance during their husbands’ incarceration or for their travel expenses to meet their husbands to be reimbursed. The British not surprisingly, rejected them all.

     What I liked about the book was the initiative of the authors to have woven a book around the happenings of the Indo-China conflict which otherwise was unknown to Indians especially when it affected only a minuscule of Chinese-Indian population. The story sets you thinking.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share it if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his way through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available on Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day-to-day life. The book is available on Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

AWADH ASSAM AND DALAI LAMA … The Kalachakra

(The story of the man who received His Holiness The Dalai Lama and his retinue in 1959 as a GOI representative when he fled Tibet in 1959. The book was recently launched on 21st November 2022 by His Holiness The Dalai Lama).

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1. Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2. Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22; 33. Good name vs Bad Name 15.10.22; Uttarapath—The Grand Trunk Road 1.12.22;

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK CORNER: “CHIP WAR: The fight for the World’s Most Critical Technology” by Chris Miller.

Copyright@shravancharitymission

    Today’s title for review is “CHIP WAR: The fight for the World’s Most Critical Technology” by Chris Miller. The book is vivaciously convincing. It’s about semiconductors and the coming US-China confrontation. Just like the semiconductor chips, Miller has packed a million history and information in this extraordinary book. The title is a remarkable, eye-popping work, a unique combination of economic and technological and strategic analysis … says PAUL KENNEDY, the bestselling author of “The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers.”

    As India takes baby steps into chip manufacturing, the history of this technology turns out to be a useful guide. A chip which is also called a semiconductor or an integrated circuit is a piece of silicon with tiny transistors carved into it that switch the 1s and the 0s. It is the material on which the entire digital world rests. It is what gives Silicon Valley its fancy name, and it is fuelling the biggest US-China confrontation.

    The book is about the evolution of the semiconductor business, and its role in the global economy and international politics. In the 1960s, Fairchild Semiconductor (and later Intel) co-founder Gordon Moore famously predicted that computing power on chips would grow exponentially, doubling every two years. Moore’s law has exceeded all expectations. Sixty years ago, a cutting-edge chip had four transistors. It has about 11.8 billion now. Each 3D transistor is smaller than a coronavirus.

    Chips are the core of digital computing, which also makes them essential to the modern world, undergirding aeroplanes, weapons, appliances, drones and toys. The next generation of networking technology and AI (Artificial Intelligence) applications make them only more necessary. And so, the clutch of firms that design and produce chips are of immense strategic importance.

    All personal computing relies on DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory) chips, which are made by two companies in Korea and one in the US. Further five firms—(American, Dutch and Japanese)—control the lighting process by which patterns are carved into silicon wafers. Fabricating and miniaturising chips are the greatest engineering challenge of our time, claims the book, for which Taiwan’s TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) is indispensable at the moment.

    As their uses proliferated, chips have become central to strategic interests. This evolution was not shaped just by corporations and consumers, but also by governments and militaries. While the Soviets had tried to keep up with the US advances in semiconductor technology, they were largely forced to rely on stealing and copying.

    In the 1980s, the Japanese juggernaut of high-quality low-cost DRAM chips posed competition to the US. Chips powered personal electronics, microwaves, camcorders and walkmans. It became clear that this technology was the crude oil of the 1980s—a resource whose control mattered to military supremacy.

    So, other Asian nations became contenders. As the US-Japan rivalry grew—South Korea and Taiwan too got into it, and so did China later. There have been missteps along the way. In the 90s, Japan failed to see the PC revolution coming, just as Intel later failed to spot the smartphone boom when it passed up on making chips for iPhones.

    Today, despite the fact that the US dissipated its lead in semiconductor fabrication and lithography, it still remains the design hub and maintains its chokehold on the technology, even as China puts billions of dollars and its best engineers into it. America’s unipolar moment and globalisation rhetoric have receded, and the tech wars have heated up as Xi Jinping crafts a new digital authoritarianism. Donald Trump called Huawei, ‘Spyway’, and slapped an export ban on China, grinding to a halt, its most advanced DRAM firm, SMIC (Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation).

    The disruptions during the pandemic revealed just how critical, this chip supply chain is—if any of the steps in the interconnected production process is endangered, so is the world’s supply of computing power.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his way through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available on Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day-to-day life. The book is available on Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

AWADH ASSAM AND DALAI LAMA … The Kalachakra

(The story of the man who received His Holiness The Dalai Lama and his retinue in 1959 as a GOI representative when he fled Tibet in 1959. The book was recently launched on 21st November 2022 by His Holiness The Dalai Lama).

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1. Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2. Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22; 33. Good name vs Bad Name 15.10.22

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

SHORT STORY: ANGER SPARES NO ONE

Copyright@shravancharitymission

Once Lord Shiva and his wife Parvati were engaged in a long conversation on Mount Kailash. Shiva was explaining the holy Vedas to his wife. The discussion went on for several years. This fatigued Parvati when one day she lost her concentration. This angered Shiva greatly, as he was short-tempered. So in a fit of anger, he cursed Parvati. He shouted at her, ‘Parvati you are only as intelligent as a fisherwoman. So go and take birth as a fisherwoman.’ And immediately after that Parvati disappeared.

    Shiva loved Parvati deeply and enjoyed her company immensely. After her sudden departure, he became very sad and lonely. He also felt terribly guilty because he had unnecessarily created a problem both for himself and her because of his anger. But there was nothing he could do now to bring back his beloved wife. With each passing day, his sadness only grew deeper. He sat quietly in one corner of his abode, brooding over his rashness. Meantime his vahana Nandi, the bull, was deeply moved by his master’s plight. After some time, he could no longer bear to see his suffering. So he decided to do something about it in order to bring back Parvati either by hook or by crook.

    In the meanwhile, Parvati had taken birth as a baby girl on mother earth. A Sardar of a fishing community saw her lying alone under a tree near his village. He did not have a child, so he decided to bring her up as his own daughter. He named her Parvati. Years went by. Parvati grew up into a beautiful young girl. She was very intelligent, loving and kind-hearted. Everybody liked her immensely in the community.

    And by now, Nandi had finalised his covert plan to bring back Parvati. He turned himself into a huge fish and went to live in the sea where Parvati lived. He started troubling the fishermen of her community. He would tear their fishing nets and overturn their boat often. Soon, the fishermen were scared to go out fishing. They went to their Sardar and told him about their plight. The Sardar declared that whosoever captured the rogue fish, would wed his beautiful daughter. There were several young men who wanted to marry Parvati. They tried their level best to capture the rogue fish, but it was of no avail.

    Finally, in desperation, the Sardar prayed to Lord Shiva to rescue his men from the evil fish. Parvati too prayed to Lord Shiva for help. Shiva heard her prayers. It made him joyful having found an excuse to go to her. He decided to rush to the earth immediately to help her. He took the form of a handsome young fisherman and met the Sardar. He offered to catch the mighty rogue fish which had been troubling his people. The Sardar received him with great warmth and told him that as declared by him, he would offer his daughter in marriage to him if he was successful. There was nothing better that Shiva could have hoped for. Nandi was only too happy to see his Lord Shiva coming to catch him. He offered no resistance and was caught in no time. The Sardar’s happiness knew no bounds. As promised, he, immediately, organised a grand wedding in the village where Parvati and Shiva were married. Shiva immediately returned to Mount Kailash with his beloved wife Parvati, realising well, it was never a good habit to act in anger. The Nandi too returned to serve his master realising that angry behaviour doesn’t even spare Gods.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1.Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2.Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22; 33. Good name vs Bad Name 15.10.22

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK REVIEW: HEY RAM TO JAI SHREE RAM … 20 Dates that Changed the Course of India … Anand Vardhan Singh

Copyright@shravancharitymission

    Generally, we all feel we know everything, about our country India … Hum sab kuch jante hain aur hamse kuch bhi chupa nahi hai. But do you know why? Because till now, no one has ever made you feel that you don’t know everything about your country. But the subject narration titled, “HEY RAM TO JAI SHREE RAM … 20 dates that changed the course of India” by senior journalist Anand Vardhan Singh will surely make you feel that.

    The book is a publication of Anamika Publishers & Distributors (P) Ltd. The price of the book is Rs 495. The narration completes in 394 pages. It’s a lengthy book. Just as human beings grow over a lifetime, nations too, grow over an aeon. India was born in the year 1947 after a hard-nosed freedom struggle. The subject book captures the salient happenings that shaped India after her independence. A famous quote that comes to my mind while reading this book is by Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. It says, “There are decades where nothing happens, and there are weeks where decades happen.” Such is the history of all countries without fail where India is no exception.

    The book details twenty such broad events that shaped India after her independence. Along with these twenty events it also covers the peripheral episodes of that period, possibly churned out, by the main event or even vice versa. I’m describing these events below but only in brief as the title has just been launched. The book narration is in plain simple English so easy to read. Noticeably, the author has given the date and year of each event on the content page itself at the beginning of the book, which gives you a bird’s eye view of the gaps between the two important events. The gaps range from two to four years in most cases with the widest one being twelve years. For example, after India embraced the constitution in 1950 the next big event that shook India was the 1962 debacle, the Chinese aggression and Nehru’s death thereafter.

    Now let me diegesis the plot to you in brief, but before that let me apprise you that the book has a crisp foreword by Dr Shashi Tharoor who requires no introduction followed by a Prologue by Satish Jha of the erstwhile Dinaman and Jansatta fame (both Hindi periodicals).

    India suffered a pathetic partition at the stroke of independence, the wounds of which are raw even now. The book starts post-independence with the famous tragedy in Chapter One. The assassination of Mahatma Gandhi on 30 January 1948. It highlights, his last, painful utterance ‘Hey Ram’ which forms, the first two words of the title of the book. In the Second Chapter post the death of Mahatma Gandhi, India embraces, the Constitution of India on 26 January 1950. Then there is a lull for more than a decade when Mother India gets into the mode of building the nation but some neighbourhoods cannot digest this. Chapter Three takes you through the famous slogan ‘Hindi—Chini-Bhai-Bhai.’ It recounts the debacle of the Chinese aggression and Nehru’s death, all between 1962 and 1964.

    After the gruelling Chinese aggression, comes the blasting war of 1965 with Pakistan, followed by Lal Bahadur Shastri’s death in Tashkent in the year 1966. And who can forget Shastri’s famous slogan ‘Jai Jawan Jai Kisan’ all covered in Chapter Four as India breathes fire. In Chapter Five, the author covers India’s victory over Pakistan in 1971 followed by the creation of Bangladesh and post that the emergence of Indira Gandhi as a triumphant Durga in the Indian scenario. But one great achievement, may not, necessarily, lead to another for in the years to come India landed up with the Dark Days of Emergency where civil liberties were suspended in the year 1975 by the same Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. The author, Anand Vardhan Singh, has written about this misfortune, of the country in Chapter Six where he also narrates the poem ‘Aao Mardo … Namard Bano’ written by the late Atal Behari Vajpayee. Then in Chapter Seven, he talks about the ‘Sampoorna Kranti, the collapse of the Janta Parivar,’ and then about an Idealist JP being betrayed in the year 1975 in days around the emergency.

    India was always a laggard in sports but Kapil Dev and his men from the position of underdogs rose to become the world champions in one-day cricket on 25 June 1983. Indeed, it was a big milestone for such a big nation which the author covers in Chapter Eight. Chapter Nine is an assortment of ‘Operation Blue Star’ which was the cause of Indira Gandhi’s assassination on 30 October 1984. This was followed by the Anti-Sikh Riot when the famous, unpopular, statement of Rajiv Gandhi that said, ‘When a Big Tree falls, the Earth Shakes’ was scripted by him. The author blames Congress for terrorism in Punjab. A point to note is that in the chapter headings on the content page, the author has mentioned several important events, dates and days which makes the heading and the chapter appear meaty. To site and example. Chapter Ten describes the Campaign Against Corruption. At the same time, it also talks about Bofor’s claims by Rajiv Gandhi, and V.P. Singh’s rise and fall. The date of these events is 30 November 1989.

    It took 44 years for the Indian economy to open up in 1991 while Narasimha Rao was the Prime Minister. The period also saw the famous Stock Market Scam in 1991 engineered by none other than Harshad Mehta. Anand covers this path-breaking step in his Eleventh Chapter. After 45 years the nation takes a mammoth turn in terms of opening the economy. In Chapter Twelve, the author takes you through the Ram Kahani of India or the Hindus. The book narrates the demolition of the Babri Masjid leading to the Rise of a New Social Identity in the year 1992. This has a reaction covered in the later chapters. Further, who doesn’t want to become a nuclear power? Ukraine dismantled all its Nuclear Weapons on the advice of a superpower and faced horrific consequences. Our leaders had visualised this need for a nuclear bomb because we are surrounded by hostile neighbours such as China and Pakistan. Chapter Thirteen describes Pokhran II, from code name ‘Smiling Buddha’ to Operation Vijay in the year 1998.

    Further, the author expounds about the year 2002, which is splurged with, carnage, and an, indelible, blood bath, in terms of the Godhra Carnage followed by the reactionary Gujarat Riots. The author extends the heading of this chapter which is Chapter Fourteen by adding the words ‘No One Killed Sohrabuddin. Sohrabuddin’s case in the book has been detailed quite well, almost like a murder mystery. Chapter Fifteen is about ‘MGNREGA’ which is indeed a game changer in rural India. The chapter is also clubbed with the RTI act, UPA’s return to power 2009: Rise of Rights in 2008.

    The advent of the Aam Aadmi Party. The arrival of Anna Hazare and India Against Corruption captured the imagination of the entire country. It also brought in a new way of Mohalla politics and canvassing with devoted volunteers wearing Gandhi caps with AAP logo. The author takes you through all this in Chapter Sixteen.

    Chapters Seventeen to Twenty are topics of the current era. They refer mostly to the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his policies, his election-winning juggernaut, headline management, the draconian demonetization and what it did and what India achieved, net-net. How Narendra Modi transformed himself from Pradhan Sewak to Pradhan Senapati. It illustrates, the Modi-Shah’s unstoppable electoral juggernaut and last but not least it is Jai Shri Ram, The Ram Temple, and whose Ram Rajya is it?—Gandhi’s or Modi’s? These are topics of common interest between 2014 and till date.

    Now let me express my impression of the book.  It is not a fast-moving spy-thriller title, but yes it is comprehensive, in the topic that it deals with. In certain chapters, the detailing of GOI acts and release of data is overbearing on account of which the book slows down. It appears the author has been privy to political hot spots during his career. This has enabled him to add certain information not so easily available in the public domain. The author gives the start date and the day for all the events for some peculiar reason or maybe for you to get a bird’s eye view of the last seventy-five years. He has criticised all political parties but only on merit. The book is a bundle of the assassinations of Indian Prime Ministers, slogans, wars, invasion and liberation, dark days of the emergency, analysis of BJP and everything that went into the making of India post-independence. It appears the author has done a great deal of homework before embarking on this project. He has analysed the data well. For political aficionados, it is a must-read. It impacts you.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Please share it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

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Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1.Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2.Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22; 33. Good name vs Bad Name

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK CORNER: STAND UP STRAIGHT … 10 Life Lessons from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst – Major General Paul Nanson

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RMA- Sandhurst

    Hello and welcome friends to my programme Book Corner. Today, I have for you a very interesting book titled ‘STAND UP STRAIGHT –10 Life Lessons from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst by Major General Paul Nanson. The relevant caption by the Telegraph on top of the front cover page of the book says, ‘Fight your own battles with Sandhurst’s self-help book.’

    It’s a Penguin Random House UK publication, published in 2019. The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (in short the RMAS) is the place where all officers in the British Army are trained to take on the responsibility of leading their fellow soldiers. During training, all officer cadets learn to live by the Academy’s motto: ‘Serve to lead.’ Officers who have graduated from Sandhurst include big names such as Sir Antony Beevor, James Blunt, Sir Winston Churchill, Sir Michael Morpurgo, astronaut Tim Peake, Heather Stanning, Nicola Wetherill, Prince William—Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry—Duke of Sussex. Even other nations choose to send their military personnel to Sandhurst for officer training because it is recognised as one of the world’s leading military training academies.

    Let me give you a brief about the author Paul Nanson before I move to the plot of the book. Paul Nanson is a British Army officer who served as Commandant of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and General Officer Commanding Recruiting and Initial Training Command. During more than thirty years in the British Army, he has served in The Troubles in Northern Ireland, the Gulf War, the Bosnian War, the Iraq War and the war in Afghanistan, which saw him appointed as the Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for distinguished services. During his tenure at Sandhurst, he established the Centre for Army Leadership, which is one of the world’s premier centres for army military leadership.

    The book is completely based on the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (in short RMAS). RMAS came into existence because British Army officers were failing. Prior to the nineteenth century, if you had the requisite money, the connections or the right background, you could simply buy rank and command and lead men. One very far-sighted officer, General Le Marchant, decided that the British Army needed to properly train and educate young men to lead, so he built the RMAS.

   The narration doesn’t have a storyline. Stand Up Straight shares 10 simple but transformative lessons that every officer is taught during their time at the world-famous military academy. Modern and counter-intuitive, ranging from making your bed and ironing your shirt to improving resilience, emotional intelligence and grace under pressure. Stand Up Straight draws on first-hand battlefield experiences as well as Sandhurst’s key leadership principles. The title of the book ‘STAND UP STRAIGHT’ is very meaningful. It covers a number of themes. Taken literally, it’s about making yourself taller, owning your space, putting your shoulders back, and stretching your spine so that you become the optimum size you were designed to be. But it’s also about being the fullest and the best version of yourself. The book is full of sterling tips that can really improve your life.

It has 10 very interesting chapters. They are as follows:

   CHAPTER 1. THE SANDHURST WAY—The Life-Saving Magic of Tidying Up: This chapter largely deals with your daily habits. We don’t mind what habits you bring into the academy, the first five weeks are about teaching you, new habits. The Coloured sergeant checks for properly ironed clothes, all folded to the dimensions of an A4 piece of paper and how to make your bed in the Sandhurst style. It teaches you to make your best nature your second nature.

CHAPTER 2. LONG DAYS, SHORT WEEKS—The Way You Spend Your Day is the Way You Live Your Life: Without a direction to follow or a purpose to aim for, we drift aimlessly or go around in circles. In the army whether at war or in peacetime—a soldier’s day is governed by specific goals. It talks about the importance of ‘COMMAND TIME.’ It conveys that the ‘EARLY BIRD MAKES BETTER DECISIONS.’ It instructs the newcomers to ‘SET YOUR CLOCKS TO SANDHURST TIME.’ It teaches how to ‘MAKE YOUR MOUNTAINS INTO MOLEHILLS.’

CHAPTER 3. TIGHTEN YOUR CHINSTRAP (Chinstrap is a strap attached to your hat)—Get to Know Your Threshold of Failure: The first five weeks are designed to bring the cadets up to a common baseline. We will put you in positions where you will probably fail, but that’s okay because it’s here you will learn. Right or wrong, make a decision. It’s better to be doing something with momentum than sitting in a ditch like a stationary target. A nice quote in this chapter is ‘FLOAT LIKE A BUTTERFLY, BOUNCE BACK LIKE A SPRING’ which reminds you of the famous quote of the famous boxer Muhammad ALI.

CHAPTER 4. PACK YOUR BERGEN (The bag used by the military) —You Don’t have to be a Minimalist, but it helps: The more thought you give to what goes into your bag, the better equipped you are for what lies further down the line. This sounds very basic, but you’d be surprised how many cadets don’t give sufficient thought to packing their bags and end up learning the lesson the hard way. So packing your bag is of utmost importance in the army while going to war. The A B Cs OF PACKING explained in the book are interesting. They include fine points such as ACCESSIBILITY, BALANCE, and COMPACTNESS. Then comes the seven questions. The 7 questions are used to provide a logical handrail to aid better decision-making. A point ‘THINKING OUTSIDE THE BERGEN’ the way in which we pack our Bergen can be used as an analogy for the way we live our life.  

CHAPTER 5. BELIEVE IN SOMETHING BIGGER—Learn to Harness the Power of Your Team: Wolves are the most socialised animals who thrive on collaboration, companionship, strict discipline and an established hierarchy. But it may also surprise you to discover that they are also remarkably compassionate towards one another. The weakest beta (follower) will never be left at the back of the pack to lag behind and get lost; it will also be insulated in the middle of the group, with an alpha (leader) at the front, and another alpha (often the leading alpha’s mate) at the rear. Cadets at Sandhurst are told from day one to establish their strengths and weaknesses as a platoon, for each individual brings their own skills to the table. The chapter has other interesting cues such as FINDING YOUR WAY, GIVING YOUR BEST WHILE YOU’RE FEELING YOUR WORST and HONESTY—IS THE BEST POLICY.

CHAPTER 6. DON’T GET LOST, READ YOUR MAP—How Do You React When Things Go Wrong? Life’s most valuable lessons are often learned when we leave our familiar comfort zones. Once we move into uncharted territory, we can really discover more about ourselves and grow. However, it’s only natural that in these strange places we can find ourselves lost so carry your road map with you. The book teaches you about FINDING YOUR WAY, to CHECK YOUR MORAL COMPASS. It also talks about THE ARMY LEADERSHIP CODE.

Chapter 7. TAKE A KNEE—Trust in Your Own Judgement: The chapter advises to TAKE A KNEE under special conditions. Talks of THE CONDOR MOMENT practised in Sandhurst. In a pressured conflict, it’s imperative not to let your blood rule your brain. Instead of rushing in offensively with retaliation, stand back, take stock of the situation, reset, recalibrate and then act. Often the COOLER HEADS PREVAIL. It describes the art of THINKING UNDER PRESSURE.

CHAPTER 8. TRAIN HARD, FIGHT EASY—Fail to Prepare and Prepare to Fail are the tenets on which R-M-A-S works. It trains you to OUT-THINK YOUR OPPONENT. It teaches you to take DARING INITIATIVE.

CHAPTER 9. CAST YOUR LEADERSHIP SHADOW—The Standard You Walk Past is the Standard You Accept: The chapter takes you through various case studies.

CHAPTER 10. SERVE TO LEAD—The Power of Example. AUTHENTIC LEADERSHIP AND INFECTIOUS COURAGE and it talks about EMPOWERING OTHERS.

    The book has 146 pages including a short glossary. The price of the book is Rs 499. The book is full of interesting phrases and quotes. Overall it’s a light interesting book. A ground-breaking, personal development, self-help book that will help you tackle life’s everyday battles. Army profits from this book will go to support the welfare of soldiers of the British Army and their dependents. I would give the book an A grade.

***

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1.Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2.Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22;

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK REVIEW: “JUNGLE NAMA … a story of the Sundarban” … Amitav Ghosh

Copyright@shravancharitymission

   

Only recently I stepped into a book stall in Mumbai located inside a mall that had a coffee counter in it. What a novel idea. No? Because coffee and books make a brilliant combination. And while waggling around the bookstore I was able to lay my hands on one of Amitav Ghosh’s recent books “Jungle Nama … a story of the sundarban.” This attractive-looking book caught my attention. It is illuminated by Salman Toor a New York-based artist of Pakistani origin. About Amitav Ghosh, we all know he is the winner of the Jnanpith Award, the highest literary award in India. The subject book was first published in India in 2021 by the Fourth Estate an imprint of Harper-Collins. The title falls under the genre of fiction. It is a hardcover comprising 82 pages. Overall a short book having a slim spine.

    Although, the title ‘Jungle Nama’ is Amitav Ghosh’s verse adaptation (ie. writing arranged with a metrical rhythm, typically having a rhyme) of an episode from the legend of Bon Bibi, which happens to be a popular folk tale in the villages of the Sundarbans located in West Bengal. It also lies at the heart of another novel penned by the same author titled ‘The Hungry Tide.’

    Friends ‘Jungle Nama … a story of the Sundarbans is a very cute book. One of the cutest that I’ve ever read. The best part of the book is that it can be read and enjoyed equally by children, adults and even the old. It is inspiring, informational, sensitive and evocative.

    It is the story of an avaricious rich merchant Dhona, a poor lad Dukhey, and his old frail mother. It is also the story of Dokkhin Rai, a mighty spirit who appears before human beings as a tiger in the jungles of Sundarbans. It is also about Bon Bibi, the benign goddess of the forest, and her warrior brother Shah Jongoli.

    As the legend goes, in one spring season Dhona who is a greedy person is seized by an aching desire. He wants to go on a voyage to collect riches such as—Honey, wax and timber from the mangroves. So he tells his younger brother I have an idea about something that we should try. Let’s go on a daring venture, we will make a great fortune, our biggest ever. It is springtime now and the mangroves are filled with hives. So let’s try to collect the richest hoard of our lives. Instead of taking one ship let us take seven.

    But his younger brother Mona advises him not to do so because he feels that they have enough for a decent and peaceful life. But Dhona insists that he will go. Mona refuses to go with him this time but promises to help him arrange a fleet of seven vessels to carry the fortune. While the vessels are arranged Mona is short of one lascar. Dhona reminds Mona about Dukhey who is the son of their poor cousin who is no more. Dukhey is desperate and will take any job says Dhona.

    As the legend unfolds Dhona who is a greedy person lures Dukhey into a sea voyage. He tells Dukhey he has outfitted a fleet of seven vessels for the tideland jungle to acquire riches and in the process, Dukhey will go around the world. He has six lascars and is shy of one where Dukhey fits in. He promises the old and hapless mother of Dukhey who is his poor cousin’s wife that upon returning from the voyage he will load Dukhey with riches and even get him married. But the old mother of Dukhey knows Dhona only makes tall and false promises and never honours them. She, therefore, tells her son Dukhey that just in case Dhona your chacha puts you in a dangerous spot in the jungle pray to the jungle queen Bon Bibi who will come to your rescue. And the same thing happens when Dhona and Dokkhin Rai connive to kill Dukhey he is rescued by the benign goddess of the forest Bon Bibi and her warrior brother Shah Jongoli. Not only that, Bon Bibi organises to send him back in a living boat … a crocodile with loads of riches.

    I will desist from detailing and exposing this lyrical book any further as it is relatively new and will leave it for the readers to discover it themselves. The original print version of this legend, dating back to the nineteenth century is composed in Bengali verse meter known as dwipodi-poyar. Jungle Nama is a free adaptation of the legend, told entirely in a poyar-like meter of twenty-four syllable couplets that replicate the cadence of the original.

    The first-ever book in verse by Amitav Ghosh, Jungle Nama evokes the wonder of the Sundarban through its poetry. The book is accompanied by the stunning artwork of renowned artist Salman Toor. It is an illuminated edition of a fabulous folk tale that every book lover would want to possess.

    Since the narration is in verses the author has used limited and appropriate words to express the glorious folk tale. Verse to verse is pleasant sounding, rhyming and meaningful. He has tried his best to tone down his vocabulary but in verses and poetries the vocabulary is not always in the author’s hands because of the rhyme factor. One, therefore, comes across uncommon words which are easy to comprehend on practically every page.

   A sentence that describes the mangrove of Sundarban that I like is, ‘the mangroves are home to predators of every kind, some you’ll never see, but they will enter your mind.’

    It is a light book almost like a fairy tale. The best part about the book is its description of the topography of Sundarbans and the telling of the folktale simultaneously which forms a brilliant imagery.

   I would give the book an A grade. A must-read.

***

****

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

*

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1.Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2.Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

SHORT STORY: BRIGHT IDEAS

Copyright@shravancharitymission

Bright Ideas come from Intelligent people

    A long time ago there once lived a person named Raju in a tiny village located near a river. He was disabled and couldn’t walk normally therefore he was forced to lead a lonely life. He used to stay with his mother in a small hut by the riverside which was a little away from the village. Over a period of time, the villagers had more or less abandoned Raju. They thought he was a spent force as he never had much to talk about except for the same old routine stuff concerning his hut’s rustic vicinities, which didn’t interest the village folks, anymore.

    Once a learned person landed up on the banks of the river near Raju’s hut. The person had arrived on a boat. As he reached the riverbank he stopped for a moment and looked at Raju. Raju said, ‘Namaskar sahib.’

    The learned person asked, ‘What is your name and what do you do?’ Raju replied, ‘Sahib, my name is Raju. But I’m unable to do much in life because I can’t walk properly as I’m disabled and therefore I lead a lonely life here in the vicinities of this village.’

    ‘But why so?’ Asked the learned person.

    ‘Because I have no friends here and my fellow villagers don’t give me enough respect. They don’t talk to me either because they find me to be a stale piece because I stay put here only.’ Raju then narrated his agony to the learned person. He had no friends and no one talked to him. He was discarded by the villagers because he had nothing new to talk about since he had not visited new places in his life so his reservoir of knowledge was very limited and that’s why he was considered an antique piece in the village and thus shunned.

    The learned man looked at Raju and said, ‘that if you don’t get the opportunity to talk to human beings talk to birds.’

    ‘But how will that help sahib?’ Asked Raju. The learned person looked at him again and said, ‘well that the birds will only tell you.’ After which the learned person left for his destination.

    The next day Raju waited for the birds near his hut thinking he’ll talk to them but none came. The next few days too, the same thing happened. One day Raju saw a bird gyrating up and down near his hut in search of some food which gave him an idea. He sprinkled some paddy seeds there and waited for a while. After some time he saw a couple of birds landing there to eat them. Soon a small flock was seen there enjoying the seeds as their food. Later Raju also kept a pitcher full of water there and the place soon turned into a ‘bird’s canteen.’ He and his mother started enjoying the scene. Soon every morning and evening a number of birds started coming there and gradually they became familiar with Raju and his mother. Soon Raju realised what a priceless tip the learned man had given him. Now he could do without the villagers’ company.

    After some days a rich merchant landed up at the same spot where the learned person had earlier arrived. He asked Raju if he had seen a learned person passing that way. Raju confirmed that yes a learned person did pass that way some time ago and because of his advice only he was having a good time amid the chattering birds. By this time Raju had also learnt their language and had started communicating with the birds; some of them had even become his friends and had even started perching on his shoulders.

    The merchant asked, ‘in which direction did the learned man, go? Raju said, ‘Well, he went towards the east.’

    ‘What is your name young man?’ Asked the Merchant.

    ‘Sahib my name is Raju.’ He replied.

    ‘What do you do Raju?’ Asked the Merchant.

    ‘Sahib, I feed birds and I also communicate with them.’

    ‘What else can you do Raju?’ Asked the merchant.

    ‘Since I can’t walk properly I can’t go anywhere so I can’t do much.’ Replied Raju.

    ‘Then spend some time next to the river every day. The flowing river that has seen the world will teach you so many things.’ Said the Merchant after which he left.

    The next morning Raju went and sat on the riverbank. After a while, he saw a boat passing from there. It was heading towards the south. Raju loudly asked the boatman, ‘where are you going?’ The boatman replied, ‘towards the sea where all the rivers meet the sea.’

    The next day Raju saw another boat heading in the opposite direction. He asked the boatman, ‘where are you going?’ The boatman replied, ‘towards the north where all the mountains reside.’ Raju thought, so what if he can’t walk, he can at least see places by sailing in a boat as his hands were perfectly fine. Soon, he sold a piece of his land out of his small holding and bought a small boat and became a boatman. He started sailing towards the north and south the two directions of the river. He even started taking the villagers across the river and with that he once again became relevant in their lives and started drawing respect from them.

    After some time, one day, Raju saw the learned person and the merchant arriving at the riverbank together. They wanted to cross the river. They recognised Raju and asked what he was doing in that boat. Raju explained that he had now become a boatman. He thanked the learned man for his good advice because of which he learned to talk to the birds that made innumerable friends. He even thanked the Merchant for motivating him to sit near the river that gave him the idea of becoming a boatman as his hands were fit enough to row the boat, even when, he could not walk normally and because of this he could see innumerable places and once again become relevant in the lives of the villagers.

    The merchant said never leave the company of a learned man. I lost the learned man once yet I followed him and met you instead, Raju. You told me he has gone towards the east and I followed him there where I found him. So never leave the company of a Wiseman.

    ‘Yes, said Raju, bright ideas come only from intelligent people. The learned sahib only showed me the way. He asked me to befriend the chattering birds instead of human beings that taught me how to respectfully live without the villagers, and you, respected merchant, showed me how to go places, even without, proper legs. There isn’t a greater asset than an intelligent company. Great ideas come from intelligent people only. Now can I take you both across the river?’ Asked Raju. ‘Yes of course.’ Replied the two.

Written by Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1.Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2.Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22;

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha

Copyright@shravancharitymission

The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; Indica, 15.8.20; The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; Happy Days, November 15, 2020; The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15,2020; Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; Poverty 15.11.21; Top View 30.11.21; The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; Buried Treasure 15.4.22; The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

SHORT STORY: THE BURIED TREASURE … GADA DHAN BELONGS TO MOTHER EARTH

Copyright@shravancharitymission

        Once an old thief who was on his death bed called his grandson and said to him, ‘son, many years ago I had buried in the Gold Merchant’s Orchard which is located in a town that is ten villages away on the east a treasure that I had stolen from his store thinking I’ll use it when I’ll grow old and when I won’t have the strength to work. Some years ago I gave the details of this treasure to your father and asked him to dig it out for me and bring it home. But your father returned empty-handed as he was confused and could not locate the exact tree under which the treasure was buried.’

    ‘But, where exactly is the treasure buried and what is it like?’ Asked the grandson.

    ‘Well, they are gold coins … called asharfis, about half a bag full which is a royal fortune in present times. I had buried them in the mango orchard of the same merchant from whom I had stolen thinking he’ll look for his stolen fortune elsewhere, but never in his own orchard. I think the treasure still lies there right under the centre most tree of the orchard. I still remember after committing the heist on that dark night I went straight to the merchant’s orchard and buried the fortune there, after digging the ground as deep as my height. But when your father returned from there he said the orchard since then had expanded unevenly both in length and breadth, so it was difficult to pin point the centre tree.

    ‘So then what do you want me to do now?’ Asked the grandson.

    ‘Well I want you to go there and look for the buried treasure for me.’ So the obedient grandson started off for the orchard. On the way there was a temple where he met the temple’s pujari. The pujari asked the young ebullient grandson where he was going. The grandson innocently told him that he was going to the Gold Merchant’s Orchard to retrieve his grandfather’s ill-gotten wealth that he had buried there long ago.

    The pujari said, ‘the buried treasure seldom serves the person who has buried it, especially, when he needs it the most and that too a stolen one. But yes, it may help a community or someone else who is needy and has a noble cause.’

    The grandson asked, ‘why?’

    The pujari replied, ‘because the buried treasure is always under mother earth’s control. It is like that seed over which the farmer has no control till it germinates and comes out of the ground. Similarly, the buried treasure is of no use to anyone, unless mother earth unearths it. And remember mother earth keeps changing her habitat and surroundings for the benefit of mankind. In your case the orchard has expanded so the tree at the centre is no more at the centre. Now you won’t be able to find the buried treasure ever.’

    But the determined grandson did not succumb to pujari’s logic. He decided to carry on in search of the orchard. So after trudging for the next few days he finally reached the town where the orchard of the Gold Merchant was located.

    But when the grandson reached the orchard he found there was no orchard there, yet the place was known as Gold Merchant’s Orchard, where now, the Gold Merchant’s Hospital stood. The grandson was amazed at the wonderful sight. He asked an old man sitting there.

    ‘Sir, was there ever an orchard here many years ago?’

    The old man replied saying, ‘yes, there was one here, you’re right, but then those mango trees in the orchard had grown very old and were not bearing any fruit so they were brought down by the Gold Merchant to plant fresh trees, but while he was doing this exercise he found his lost gold treasure buried under a tree that was stolen by a thief many years ago. He thought mother earth has returned his fortune for a noble cause so he changed his mind and converted the orchard which he thought was for his own consumption into a hospital for the poor and the needy.

    The relieved grandson after hearing the story returned home appreciating the Gold Merchant’s noble gesture only to find that his grandfather had passed away in his absence without enjoying the stolen booty. He asked his father if he knew about the hospital that had come up there. The father said, ‘yes he did, but he didn’t want to tell that to his father as he was living with the false hope that someday he will enjoy that ill-gotten booty and he didn’t want to break his false hope till he was alive, and that was the reason why he lied to him.’

    ‘Grandfather is fine, but why couldn’t you tell me when I left in search of the booty that the orchard is no more there?’ Asked the grandson.

    ‘Because my dear son I wanted you to witness the halo the grandeur of the hospital yourself as seeing is believing, and that the buried treasure never helps the person who has buried it and that too an ill-gotten one.

    Moral of the story: Beware of buried treasure … Kala dhan … Gada dhan.

###

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; Indica, 15.8.20; The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; Happy Days, November 15, 2020; The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15,2020; Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; Poverty 15.11.21; Top View 30.11.21; The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; Buried Treasure 15.4.22;

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK REVIEW: THE ROZABAL LINE … Ashwin Sanghi

Copyright@shravancharitymission

    Let me take you through this very interesting book written by famous author Ashwin Sanghi some time back. The name of the book is ‘The Rozabal Line’ an engrossing novel of some three hundred and fifty pages.

    It is a thriller fiction by Ashwin Sanghi, written under the pseudonym Shawn Haigins. The book was originally published in 2007. A revised edition of which was also published by Westland Ltd & Tranquebar Press in 2008 under the author’s own name. I’m purposefully bringing this book to you so late because it is a very well researched fiction novel that can live through times. Most certainly It has a long shelf life for it’ll keep resurrecting itself at appropriate intervals. But before I take you through my comments as a reader let me first take you through the plot of this masterpiece.

    Let me first begin by asking did Jesus survive his execution? Well, the novel does deal with the story of Jesus having survived the crucifixion and later his settling in India. The fictional spark of the novel I suppose comes in the same rhythm as Dan Brown’s—’The Da Vinci Code.’ I brooded over the book for some time before deciding to read it again. The title of the book draws its name from the Rozabal Shrine in Srinagar, located in Kashmir. Some cynosures such as Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, the founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is said to have been the first person who claimed in 1899, that Rozabal was the burial place of Jesus of Nazareth. The historical basis of the novel is derived from several other books on the subject including ‘Jesus Lived in India’ by Holger Kersten and ‘The Unknown Life of Jesus’ by Nicolas Notovich.

    A cardboard box is found on a shelf in a London library. When the bewildered librarian opens it. She screams before she falls unconscious on the floor. Within the winding recesses of the Vatican, a beautiful assassin of Asian origin by the name of Swakilki swears she will eliminate all who do not believe in her twisted credo.

    A deadly elite army of thirteen calling itself the Lashkar-e-Talatashar is scattered around the globe. The fate of its members curiously resembles that of Christ and his Apostles. Their agenda is clearly Armageddon.

    The forces of Islam and the forces of Christianity are positioning themselves for the greatest conflict ever. At the end of this conflict, they will both destroy themselves. And then will rise the New World Order—the power of the Illuminati.

    A Hindu astrologer Pandit Ram Gopal Sharma spots the approaching configuration of the stars and nods to himself at the grim realization of the end of the world. In Tibet, a group of Buddhist monks search for reincarnation, much in the way their ancestors searched Judea for the Son of God. In the strife-torn Kashmir, a tomb called Rozabal holds the key to a riddle that arises in Jerusalem and gets answered at Vaishno Devi. The plot insinuates Hinduism could be the mother of all religions being the one of the oldest. It dwells on the holy triad. The configuration of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh and Kali Lakshmi and Saraswati.

    An American priest, Father Vincent Sinclair has disturbing visions of people familiar to him, except that they seem to exist in other ages. Induced into past-life regressions, he moves to India to piece together the violent images. Shadowing his every move is the Crux Decussata Permuta, a clandestine secret society that would rather wipe out entire creation than allow an ancient secret from being disclosed.

    The Rozabal Line is a thriller spanning between continents and centuries, with Ashwin Sanghi, under the pseudonym Shawn Haigins, telling a story that goes back to the time of the birth of the Abrahamic religions. Let us see what the peridocals had to say about this novel. According to Tehelka, one of India’s news magazines, “The Rozabal Line” is a thriller that enquires into the controversial claim that Jesus Christ travelled to India and is buried in Kashmir’s Rozabal Tomb”.

    The Hindu, one of India’s National dailies, says that “The book deals in greater depth with the issue of Christ’s union with Mary Magdalene touched upon by The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown as well as incorporating postulates of several other books, including Jesus Lived in India: Life Before and After the Crucifixion by Holger Kersten and Jesus Died In Kashmir: Jesus, Moses and The Ten Lost Tribes Of Israel by Andreas Kaiser.” After the novel was published, due to attention drawn to the site by others as well as the story told in the book, there was a large upsurge of visitors to the Rozabal Shrine in Srinagar. (I have just returned from Srinagar).

    At a talk delivered in Chennai, the author said, “We assume the different faiths are distinctly different, but once you start tracing back the roots of their beliefs, you find their origins are much closer than you might imagine.” Irrespective of the controversial theme surrounding his book, the author has continuously maintained that his book is a work of fiction and should be read as a fiction conspiracy thriller. In an interview with a leading tabloid, the author was asked: “Do you believe that Jesus lived in India?” and he replied, “I don’t think it’s in any way relevant if he came here or not. But do I wish it was true? Yes, completely. Isn’t that such a romantic notion?” MV Kamath, the leading commentator, has said that the book is “provocative, but certainly commanding attention.”

     The ongoing controversial nature of the story surrounding the tomb, as promoted by various people such as those of the Ahmadiyya movement and as also explored in this book, resulted in the site being closed down to visitors, particularly after Lonely Planet—a travel guide book detailed the tomb.

Similarities to the November 2008 Mumbai attacks:

The Hindustan Times was the first to point out that Sanghi’s novel bore several similarities to the November 2008 Mumbai attacks. In particular, Sanghi’s novel spoke of an attack by the Lashkar-e-Taiba, an Islamist terror group based in Pakistan controlled Kashmir. It also spoke of the Lashkar spinning off an ultra-elite group of twelve commandos, similar to the Deccan Mujahideen. The plot of The Rozabal Line used a ship off the coast of Gujarat as well as a Thuraya satellite phone besides describing the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower as the residence of one of the main characters in the story. Sanghi also described the group as being controlled by the Inter-Services Intelligence of Pakistan without the knowledge of the Pakistani president. All these elements were purportedly present in the November 2008 Mumbai Terror Attacks. Consequently, The Hindu, included The Rozabal Line among its top fiction picks while The Telegraph included The Rozabal Line among its top “Paperback Pickings”.

    The author has clarified in a subsequent interview that he was unhappy about the commonalities although he readily agrees to being called a “conspiracy theorist”.

     Friends, what is more fun, reading the book after knowing the story or reading it first to know the story? You decide. My observations on the narration are as follows:

    The plot of this novel is derived out of an extremely ancient event or happening that affected the entire world over. The author therefore takes you around the world. His imagination is no less than Dan Brown. There are but a few pages with limited sex to break the monotony of a theological thriller. And the sex is leisurely described in a very dignified manner considering the genre of the book. The author takes a rather long time taking you round and round the world before he lays down the plot. The book is initially slow. It takes its own sweet time to build up but that’s because of its complicated plot that takes a long time to brew. The plot is not established till almost page 81. The book quite munificently deals with previous births and regressions. The theological rigmarole of certain Indian states and cities such as Goa, J&K, Mumbai and some more have been covered in great detail. Many things are happening in this narration simultaneously so it’s a bit difficult for the reader to keep pace with. It’s a difficult plot and requires some concentrated reading and is in no way a light book. There are too many characters so its difficult to remember their names. It’s not some linear narration instead it goes around the world in small paragraphs and sub-chapters. The book in fact is an assimilation of small sub-tiles finally bound into a story and thick spine. It appears the author has made some deep commendable study before embarking on the mission to write it. It’s a taxing novel dealing in religion and therefore provocative, but one must take it as a fiction. It’s got some great hypnotizing scenes as well that only helps in building the overall plot.

    The narration is through small chapters. It’s a complicated novel. Ghalib is one of the main characters. The book certainly takes you on a world tour. Did Jesus take Samadhi? Was Jesus revived the book runs all over? It’s an old history intertwined into fiction. The book destroys the fundamental belief that Jesus died on the cross. The research has been fictionalized quite subtly. The uniqueness of the book is that you are never in the thick and thin of the story as it keeps changing. One wonders at times where did Ashwin get the details from? Though the book is titled ‘The Rozabal Line’ yet the word Rozabal is used for the first time on page 210 more than halfway down and that explains why the suspense of the plot is so deadly. The book doesn’t give you a feel as if you’re reading a novel on the contrary it makes you feel as if you’re reading some live pieces or columns. It’s a very confusing novel with a plethora of names. You will keep changing your opinion about the narration as you go along the book. The book has a engrossing plot. Small pieces of writing knit the elaborate narration. There are many sessions on resurrections. The main plot of the book is constructed on so many fragments that one gets lost in its detailing. The book connects you with all major religions of the world. The plot has a long build-up. From where to where even the Nagas of India are there. Read it with full concentration to enjoy the book otherwise, you’re wasting time. The author summarises the novel towards the end for the convenience of the readers. I would give the novel eight out of ten.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

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TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

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Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; Indica, 15.8.20; The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; Happy Days, November 15, 2020; The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15,2020; Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; Poverty 15.11.21; Top View 30.11.21; The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22;

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