30 July, 2021

Saluting The DM

I salute you, DM of Bareilly. Sure, Chandan Gupta shouldn’t have been killed in Kasganj and we grieve for him, but there is no need to bully our fellow citizens, just to prove the colonialists right.

Saluting The DM

If you are willing to forget the criminal past of the author, Shantaram, a thriller set in Mumbai, can legitimately be rated far above the “clunky” stuff churned out by the Lutyens’ elite. A few passages of the novel still remain vivid in my cluttered, rapid-access-memory. It is about the narrator’s train journey from Mumbai to Shantaram’s village in an unreserved compartment. In the dirty railway coach, everybody fights everyone else to get a perch. There is no compassion, no civility, no frail-strong considerations; the only law is that of the jungle and the stronger ones grab the better slot. If somebody falls off the footboard from the moving train into the grinding wheel, so be it. But once the train starts running and everybody gets settled somewhere in the strong-weak, fast-slow, mighty-meek hierarchy, there suddenly blossoms a bonhomie, inexplicable and irrational. The same menacingly vicious people start sharing a meal, a story and begin to care for the weak and the needy. The unreserved compartment of the Indian Railways is...

More from Rajesh Ramachandran

Latest Magazine

August 02, 2021

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section