The Ghosts of Gurugram by Debeshi Gooptu
The Ghosts of Gurugram by Debeshi Gooptu is not a scary or horror novel as the title suggests nor a humorous novel as the jacket of the ebook suggests. It is a novel written with a sense of purpose to raise a very sensitive issue.
First something about the story. It is about Tara, who was heartbroken after the cancellation of her marriage and was on the verge of depression. She leaves Kolkata and comes to Gurgaon in a hope to start afresh. It is here a ghost comes into the picture.
Initially for a few pages it was appearing that some kind of horror story is about to begin, but there was no horror element in the plot so I was expecting some kind of a horror comic. But the author seems to have something different in mind.
The ghost in the story is Simran who commits suicide and resides in the flat after death which Tara takes in for rent. Both communicates and Tara come to know about Simran’s real reason behind the suicide and how much Simran regrets ending her precious life.
The author has chosen Gurgaon, now Gurugram, as the background of this story. It is a fast moving Millennium city with a lot of flamboyance. But the author didn’t show it just mentioned about the extravagance of the Gurgaon city. She concentrated more on showing the rise of suicide cases in Gurgaon by the people who has fallen back and later regretting for giving up their dear life and not thinking about their near ones.
I have never been to Gurgaon but have heard that in spite of all the development and amenities people lead a stressful life in order to maintain their status quo. Social development didn’t take place accordingly leading to unrest family life and rise in domestic crimes. Of course rampant traffic jams and pollution problems are the gift of rapid urban development in the city.
An Important Message
It is here the author wants to convey a very important message to all the readers of the book. Don’t give up your precious life for a few depressing moments when nothing seems to be correct and nothing good is happening and finishing the life off appears to be the only solution to all the problems. Like all kinds of time, this testing period will also pass away.
Just imagine if such a positive advice is conveyed to a person with suicidal tendencies, he or she might become hopeful again that good time will come back; that this is just a phase and will pass away.
Fallacies in the plot
There are a few shortcomings in the story like Tara being a boss share an overly informal relation with Neetu her junior that latter dares give weeds to former. Also Tara has not seen any ghost in Kolkata but all of a sudden she sees ghosts everywhere in Gurgaon. Some more shortcomings are there, but I really want to overlook them and concentrate on the takeaway of the novel.
The story doesn’t provide with a solution, but it gave a sense of hope, a fickling ray in darkness, a tinge of courage to face adversity. The book has left a deep impact on my psyche. There is a dawn after every night and happiness is waiting for you at the horizon to be embraced by you.
There are many self help books written on this topic, but it is the simplicity with which the author conveyed the message in simple terms through a heartfelt story that touched my heart.