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R.K. Narayan

Nearly 70 years ago, India's greatest living writer in English, took out a brand new exercise book and wrote in it: "It was Monday morning."With those four words, Rasipuram Krishnaswamy Narayan (just R.K. Narayan to most) took off on a journey to that oddly populated fictional continent called Malgudi, with the young boy Swami and his eclectic mix of...

How Green is Your School?

Here's a little check - list from the New Delhi based children's newspaper Gobar Times, to rate your school.Getting ThereOptimum use of the school bus fleet: School bus routes should cover a lot of area, with the fleet picking up as many students as possible.Car pooling: This is quite a workable idea today. Students coming to school from the...

An Earth Day Fable

Indians are masters of junk. And out of junk they produce masterpieces. One such junk master is the sculptor Nek Chand who fashioned his sculptures from waste. The story goes that Nek chand was once invited to America to fashion sculptures, works of art out of waste. Nek Chand came back disillusioned and glum complaining that their junk was...

Hamid Buys an Eid Present

Festival of Eid English translation of 'Eidgah' (Hindi) Written by Munshi Premchand Translated by Khushwant Singh Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiTranslated by the veteran columnist and writer, Khushwant Singh, Festival of Eid retains the compelling essence of the original work.This well illustrated book tells the story of Eid, as it is celebrated in a small village, and stresses that festivals...

The Nest

Common Birds Written by Salim Ali and Laeeq Futehally Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiThink of birds and you think of Dr. Salim Ali, India's most famous ornithologist. He is the scientist who succeeded in communicating his passion for studying bird life in India to the ordinary Indian.Generations of Indians have grown up on his wonderfully warm and crisp writings...

Toilet Matters

Where: New Delhi, IndiaAugust 3, 2000 : As a kid, I had a big problem going out. I hated the thought of travel. It's not that I was a stay-at-home type. I liked visiting people, places. But travel I hated. For, in the midst of a particularly long journey, I would desperately want to go to the toilet....

Humble Rickshaw Gets a Face-lift

Where: New Delhi, IndiaJuly 15, 2000: This inauguration did not make the media go crazy with their cameras and flashbulbs. There were no pop stars or actors either. Delhi's Chief Minister, Sheila Dixit was present when 20 rickshaws quietly got on to the roads. The sleek, colourful cycle-rickshaw is designed to give comfort to the driver as well...

Glimpses from Gandhi’s Life

Stories From Bapu's Life Written by Uma Shankar Joshi Illustrations by Mickey Patel Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiGandhiji’s intellectual influence on Indians has been considerable. Some were attracted by his emphasis on political and economic decentralisation, others by his insistence on individual freedom, moral integrity, unity of means and ends, and social service; still others by his satyagraha and political...

The Family Album

Cheerful Spirits Written by Gita Iyengar Illustrations by Pulak Biswas Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiSummer vacations seemed never-ending when Priya first moved into her new home. Till she met Hari, the boy living next door. Suddenly excitement fills the air as they go about exploring the nooks and crannies of Hari's cluttered home. But the real adventure comes along only...

Wonder in the Sand

Adventures in the Desert Written by Cheryl Rao Illustrations by Ashish Sengupta Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiTwo children from Mumbai spend a year in a small army township in the middle of the Rajasthan desert. Missing the urban sights and sounds, it takes them a while to get used to living in a place where the only excitement is a...

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