Story : 4 Stars
Translation : 4 ½ Stars
How do lives change after a revolution? The Gorkhaland Movement in the mid 80’s or simply Chyyasi ko Andolan officially consumed more than 1200 people. What are the stories that stayed in the public consciousness after it happened?
What did the revolutionaries feel once it got supposedly over after an accord or how did they feel about it? Well, this is what the new translated Novella ‘Song of the Soil’ does. It brings back memories. A story of the ‘hunted’ written in lucid text.
Originally written in the Nepali language as “Faatsung” in 2019 by Chuden Kabimo, after almost 30 years of the Gorkhaland Accord, it received much-needed applause for recreating and chronicling those times.
Song of Soil is the English avatar that has been very well translated by Ajit Baral keeping the flavour of the original text. Readers who know the Nepali language will almost be able to hear someone constantly whispering the original text into ears as you flip through the pages.
The story has been beautifully crafted by weaving some of the stories of incidents that have taken rounds all these years of the brief yet violent movement through the stories of Ripden, Nasim, and Norden, their days in the various hideouts at the GVC camp and the guerrilla operations against the Syarpis(CRPFs).
Though the story does mention fictionalized characters like the Chief and his passion or NB sir and his political shrewdness, yet people who know the history of this revolution will be able to well decipher them.
The love, hate, and betrayal that played out during the revolution have been extremely well documented keeping the locale of the rivers, valleys, and mountains with specific mentions of villages that had received key prominence during the struggle. Thank god this book was written so as to keep these memories alive.
In the end, I am sure the readers will end up saying ‘Baaf Re!’ as these two words keep getting repeated time and again in the book.
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