reader ✓ Year of the Weeds ☆ Paperback ¸ mbjuk

book ¹ Year of the Weeds Ë Siddhartha Sarma

Year of the Weeds‘Sometimes Korok it is best if the sorkar forgets you’Korok lives in a small Gond village in Odisha His life is in the garden he tends every day Anchita an artist lives in the house which has the garden One day the g A triumph Such a powerful book about a small voice that’s always marginalised for being different from the “norm” Lovely lovely lovely

doc Year of the Weeds

reader ✓ Year of the Weeds ☆ Paperback ¸ mbjuk ✓ ‘Sometimes Korok it is best if the sorkar forgets you’Korok lives in a small Gond village in Odisha His life is in the garden he tends every day Anchita an artist lives in the house which has the garden One day the government tells the Gonds they have tE companyHow long will the Gond resistance last when politicians young activists and even Maoists arrive at the village?What can a lone gardener and a girl with a sketchbook do against the most powerful people in the lan The bus was lateBut late and early are only words you can use if you have a watch If you have a watch the bus becomes late or early or even why not? on time None of the persons had a watch So the bus was an idea that would happen some timeLoosely based on the legendary fight of the Dongria tribes to save the Niyamgiri Hills from being exploited by Vedanta Siddhartha Sarma's Year of the Weeds tells the story of the battle from the perspective of a tribal boy and the daughter of the Forest OfficerKorok visits his mother's marker every day and visits his father in jail once a week When he is not doing either he is a gardener coaxing to life medicinal plants from the sacred forest of his tribeHis world changes when a company wants to mine for bauxite in his hillsHe's thrown into a world where the government the corporates the media the activists and the Maoists each battle it out to decide the fate of the sacred hills which are a legacy of the tribe Who decides what is important for the tribals? A nameless entity that has no stake in the sacred forests or the tribals themselvesIs development important or maintaining the ancient way of life?How far can the police go and when does their writ end? Important uestions dealt with sensitivityA book that stays with you long after you finish reading it One that throws new dimensions on what is happening in the country todayCertainly a book that teenagers can read but perhaps not a book that needs to be classified YA

Siddhartha Sarma Ë Year of the Weeds book

Overnment tells the Gonds they have to leave the village A company wants to mine the sacred hill next to it for bauxite The Gonds oppose it but the government led by police officer Sorkari Patnaik is sure to win So is th A common lament that crops up in conversation with fellow readers of children’s literature is the absence of the invisible people in books – the marginalised the village boy who lives under a leaking thatched roof somewhere in the interiors of the country a girl who is allowed to go to school only if her share of work at home is done and so on So when I saw this book I made a mental note to personally thank Siddhartha Sarma on behalf of many of us out there Siddhartha Sarma’s Year of the weed is set in a small Gond village on Odisha Korak is a teenaged boy uite content in being a gardner at the Forest Officer’s home He speaks very little unlike Anchita the Forest officer’s daughter who likes to sketch and considers Korak her friend Korak’s very common unnoticeable life changes when the Government tells the Gonds to vacate their land since a company wants to mine the sacred hill for bauxite What follows is the circus we see everyday from the other side sitting pretty in our living rooms and lapping it all up The difference here is that the circus is seen through the eyes of the Gonds You would smile knowingly at places in the book and feel ashamed at others knowing fully well that this is not far from the truth and that we choose to do nothing about it Korak’s innocent observations are cleverly layered by the writer shoving the truth gently in your face leaving no room for the reader to hide The description is so vivid that when sweat trickles down Sorkari Patnaik’s forehead you can feel the heat too The way the Gonds think and speak is so relatable I can imagine this is how it would be Mostly because in my limited experience with talking to village kids up in the mountains initially I only got shuffles and absent minded nods as replies Without naming any names he has managed to take a potshot at every politician and system running the show today Little things that went in to making of this story get you to think Anchita’s insistence on feeding Korak ‘kek ‘ cake for instance is something we standing from where we do would see as a perfectly normal thing to do What if stuff we think of as delicacy and hence a privilege is unpalatable to the one who seems to us to be in need of everything ? It gets you to stop and rethink My only gripe is the label YA It is perfectly fine for teenagers as well as grown ups In fact I insist that everyone read it It is essential that stories like these are read and discussed The only reference that the older one was able to give me about Gonds was ‘yeah it is a tribe We fleetingly read about them in grade 7 or 8 I think’ I pressed the book in his hands and asked him to read it His exams are on I hope he reads it soon Then we can talk about it Till then I shall patiently waitGo on pre order it