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HT Picks: This week’s most interesting reads

Book picks this time include an exploration of the quest for God, essays on the state of our nation, and a volume on the Indian judiciary

books Updated: Mar 23, 2018 20:00 IST
HT Team
HT Team
Hindustan Times
Justice Katju,God,Ravish Kumar
This week’s list of good reads mixes spiritualism and politics.(HT Team)
Stalking God, Anjali Kumar, Rs 399, 232pp, Hachette

When a lawyer at Google starts asking questions that her search engine can’t answer, she embarks on a series of misadventures to find God - or at least some form of enlightenment that she could someday impart to her daughter.

Stalking God: My Unorthodox Search for Something to Believe In is the story of Anjali Kumar’s wonder-filled, wild and sometimes frightening quest to find a spiritual path in our modern world. She called God from a phone booth in the middle of the desert. She had her aura cleared long-distance by a virtual healer in Australia. She brought dessert to a potluck dinner with witches, baked for hours in a Mexican sweat lodge, and hired a medium to convene with the dead.

Kumar offers an honest account of some of the less-than-mainstream spiritual practices that are followed by millions around the world today as she searches for the answers to life’s most universal questions: Why are we here? What happens when we die? Is there a God? What she discovered in the end was surprising, unifying, and stunning in its simplicity. *

THE FREE VOICE BY RAVISH KUMAR

The Free Voice, Ravish Kumar, Rs 499, 177pp, Speaking Tiger

Ravish Kumar is one of our bravest and most mature public thinkers and speakers. Few journalists today have as keen an understanding of Indian society and politics and as strong a commitment to the truth. Fewer still can match him in eloquence and integrity.

In this wide-ranging book, he examines the spaces available for people to speak out, whether in the mainstream or on social media, and why they are constantly shrinking. He investigates the threats to a free expression - censorship, the fear of institutional, physical and psychological violence - and how these threats are being used to replace civilized debate, dialogue and social harmony with intolerance and hate. He also catalogues the many ways in which the media, elected representatives and the institutions of the land are collectively failing us. And , most importantly, he sets out what we must do as citizens if we are to reclaim lost ground and build an intellectually progressive, inclusive an truly democratic nation.

The Free Voice presents with great insight, wit and characteristic forthrightness, a much needed and timely report on the state of the nation. This is a book that everyone must read and ponder over. *

WHITHER INDIAN JUDICIARY BY JUSTICE BY JUSTICE MARKANDEY KATJU

Whither Indian Judiciary, Justice Markandey Katju, Rs 599, 297pp, Bloomsbury

This book presents, for the first time, a comprehensive and analytical inside view of the Indian judiciary. Justice Katju traces the evolution of law and proceeds to analyse, with incisive insight, matters of critical importance, like the appointment of judges, contempt of court, delays in justice and the challenges facing the Indian judiciary. The author draws upon his extensive tenure as a justice of the High Court and Supreme Court to draw examples and relate fascinating personal experiences. He addresses issues like judicial corruption and propagates novel proposals like lawyers to be brought under the Consumer Protection Act.

Some memorable judgements which helped in shaping the Indian judiciary have been made by Justice Katju. The book covers these judgements in detail and also includes anecdotes, which bring out the captivating and complex world of the judiciary.

A must read book for not just those in the legal field but all those wanting a never before insight into the Indian judiciary. *

*All copy from the book flap.

First Published: Mar 23, 2018 19:58 IST