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Book ReviewTinka Tinka Dasna

Tinka Tinka Dasna: Reporting From Inside The Jail

The book is an enormous effort of Dr. Vartika Nanda in collaboration with the dichotomy of the society. It is a lucid collection of stores of prisoners looked upon through the humanitarian lens. Her previous work in‘Tinka Tinka Tihar’ and then simultaneously in ‘Tinka Tinka Dasna’ is a clear adherence towards social change.

These stories have been mindfully collected in order to repudiate the self-made prejudices about prisoners’ life and stereotypes around them. Their prejudices prevent them from feeling human.

This book shows that efforts of one can make an issue the chief plank in the government manifestos. It highlights the malleable and vulnerable nature of the lives of prisoners.
The mural painting based on the theme of ‘Tinka Tinka Dasna’ was designed by the prisoners themselves on the central wall of the prison. These murals reflected upon their affection for their loved ones.
This book captures a silent fight between the prisoners and their perceived identity and unacceptability in the society.

“Jail is not about what you like and what you don’t it is about acquiescence and we have accepted our destiny”. This statement by Nupur Talwar responds to a very propelling question regarding the devastating nature of prison life and helplessness around it. It shows how the society’s behavior towards them has impinged their life socially, emotionally and psychologically.

This book is fully replete with pictures and poems of emotions, thoughts and literary attempts of these prisonersin Dasna jail. It is a paradigm for social change and unravels a path connecting with these unaccepted with endangered elements of our society craving for life.

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The song ‘Tinka Tinka Dasna’ sung by the inmates of Dasna Jail is an attempt to fill the lives of prisoners full of happiness. Their voice tunes the life of lifeless people. Music helps in assuaging pain the inmates are going through. They have learned to find solace in music and other forms of art. The song is an inevitable effort by Dr. Vartika Nanda in changing the lives of prisoners. Their performance sent the audience into ecstasies.

As Plato said “Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to imaginations, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything”. This song has given a new imagination to the pensioners to look at the life.

This is as a whole, an omnibus project looking at this grave issue in a very soft manner.
‘Tinka Tinka Dasna’ points a poignant picture as it pears into the hearts of those imprisoned in Dasna jail.

By: Nitin Kumar
Student of English Journalism
Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi

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