Presented here is a dharohar of 17 short stories based on the period between 1960 and 1970—a highly eventful decade in the unfolding of the history of independent India. Translated from Hindi into English, these short stories are the evident outcome of the era of the Nayi Kahani or the new story in Hindi literature. They represent, in narrative form, the desolation of the educated Indian of a time when the society was going through changes on a global scale; words like democracy, universalism, non-obscurantism, liberalism, secularism seemed to carry a lot of conviction.
These tales portray the imbalance of work and life, receding job opportunities, migration, alienation, loss of personal connection with one’s family, the futility of pseudo-sophistication, and an overall existentialist consciousness of the urban society at large. Will the common Indian be able to overcome the shadows of despair and move on to a brighter future?—is a question that haunts the reader in every story.