Book Reviews by a Pioneer: The Reluctant Doctor by Balesh Jindal

I shifted to Delhi towards the end of 1997. I had often travelled to Gurgaon on a highway, which at that time was nothing much to boast about. I have seen the metamorphosis of this road to an expressway. But, I had not thought much about the localities that I would pass through, which are as dense as any urban jungle, and which I now associate as an integral part of the capital city of India.

It is in these localities, which were nothing more than villages with vast expanses of agricultural lands in the mid-eighties, that the author of the book found herself running a rural clinic, fresh out of medical college. She had dreams of moving out of the country. But her father had other ideas for her, and he gently nudged her into a journey, now spanning almost 40 years.

And what a journey it has been. It is not just the years, it is the transformation that has taken place from a rural setting to urban – people who turned rich overnight selling their farmlands in the name of development. The ills that would plague a youth which did not know the way to keep a level head burdened by the riches – drugs, unwanted pregnancies, fights, and much more.

And this lady, our author has seen it all. The book is about changes in our society – some good, some bad – as Balesh has seen. The book is contemporary as it is relevant even for the youth of today. Real life anecdotes and incidents make the book an interesting read.

The review is by Sanjay Chandra, author of The Gymnast, and The Life and Times of a Common Man.

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