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INTO ANOTHER DAWN
By Chaman Nahal
Sterling Publishers, New Delhi, 1977, 35.00

WHEN A PLACE BECOMES A PERSON
By Anees Jung
Vikas, New Delhi, 1977, 35.00

VOLUME II NUMBER 3 May-June 1977

Ravi is a man on the run, from his surroundings, his past, his loneliness, himself. A brahmin boy from Har­dwar, in the usual course of events Ravi would have continued on the none-too-clean banks of the none-too­-clean Ganges, picking up fees for interceding between pilgrims and the Almighty; going mechanically through the rituals attendant to birth and death. What was not altogether usual about Ravi's background, fortunately as it turned out, was the harsh stepmother whom he endured for several years. Driven beyond breaking point he leaves home and sets up shop as a panda in Rishikesh. And would have been there to this day but for a fortunate meeting with Steve and Liz Cogney, not the usual guru-struck American tourists, but gen­uine and curious and the wanting-to-­know-India kind. Steve suggests that Ravi should apply to schools in the USA. Which is how Ravi, the unwanted Hardwar brahmin, finds himself watch­ing the annual Yale Princeton football match. Which is where he meets Irene. What should I say about Irene? That she was young and green-eyed, liked rock music and loved the sea? That she believed a woman's real place was inside of a man's heart, that she was candid and straightforward and when she said you come and have tea with me it was obvious she meant come to bed? Chaman Nahal's Into Another Dawn is Love Story Indian-style. It doesn't stretch the imagination too far to see it translated into celluloid. There isn't much of a story here. But then neither was there much of anything in Love Story and yet it climbed to the top and stayed there. And the queues kept lengthening to see it come alive on the screen. Let Ravi describe the effect of his encounter with Irene: ‘First the plunge and then the caress. Yet could I be more wild with want? And that’s where Irene had driven the spike into my being. This had been the bane of my existence—order. The natu­ral order of things. The perfect order. Blast the sun and the moon. I’m no mass of lava or dead rock hurtling help­lessly across empty space. Why must I work and sleep according to the clock? Why must I work at all to live? Why not live first and then, if time permits, do a little work as well. But in my ...


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