Book Launch: Lokesh Gulayani’s “Ladkiyan Hongi”

A discussion and release on storyteller Lokesh Gulyani's 7th book 'Ladkiyan Hongi' was organized by Club Literati at Arera Club on Saturday, 9th September.
The program was moderated by Dr. Neelkamal Kapoor, who took charge of the program while answering interesting questions from the author. Lokesh Gulyani takes writing seriously. This was reflected on the evening 9th September. Talking about books, author Lokesh Gulyani told the audience that "One cannot write a story by thinking. By thinking you can only build a structure, not a complete building. The story itself dictates the story."
The launch of the book by our President, Dr. Seema Raizada along with the most celebrated members.
Author Lokesh Gulyani and moderator Dr. Neelkamal Kapoor
The audience enchanted by the deep discussion
He also told that "Ladkiyan Hongi" is his seventh book which is a collection of 13 short stories. All stories are different from each other. When asked about the book, the author said, "I completely agree with one thing that stories have their own time to be completed. If they are tried too hard, they become such sullen Laila. If they were, they would have been beautiful. But at the last moment she takes revenge on you by wearing ugly make-up."
Very effective questions were asked by Neelkamal Kapoor in the program. Due to which the audience remained engaged till the end. In the end, President of Club Literati, Seema Raizada, expressed her gratitude to the author, facilitator and all the present audience and reiterated her resolve to continue organizing similar programs in future also.

संगीता गुन्देचा कि पडिक्कमा

5th July, 2023: स्वामी विवेकानन्द लाइब्रेरी में संगीता गुन्देचा के साथ कविताओं पर चर्चा करते हुए एक शाम बिताई।
क्लब लिटराटी द्वारा आयोजित पुस्तक चर्चा का विषय संगीता गुन्देचा की नई प्रकाशित पुस्तक के बारे में था, जो न केवल एक कवि हैं, बल्कि एक कहानीकार, निबंधकार, अनुवादक और नाट्यशास्त्रज्ञ भी हैं। चर्चा की संचालन डॉ. रेखा श्रीवास्तव ने किया और शाम की कवयित्री संगीता गुंदेचा के साथ अंतरंग चर्चा के लिए ध्रुव शुक्ल, अरुणाभ  सौरभ और गीत चतुर्वेदी भी शामिल हुए।
जब संगीता गुन्देचा से पूछा गया कि उन्होंने ने अपनी किताब का नाम पडीक्कमा क्यों रखा है तो उन्होंने जवाब दिया कि पडीक्कमा प्राकृत भाषा का शब्द है। इस शब्द का मूल है पडिक्कमन, जिसका अर्थ है लौटना। पडिक्कमा कविता साल 2019 में दो रिश्तेदारों यानी बाबूजी (पिता सीएम गुन्देचा) और विमल दा (बड़े भाई रमाकांत गुन्देचा) की वापसी पर लिखी गई है। यह कविता परिवार के इन दो सदस्यों की मृत्यु के इर्द-गिर्द घूमती है। किताब का नाम भी पडीक्कमा है क्योंकि कविता करना अपने मृतकों और परिक्रमा पर निकले पूर्वजों की परिक्रमा करने जैसा है।
संगीता गुन्देचा ने संस्कृत के चम्पूकाव्य, जिसमें पद्य और गद्य दोनों समाहित हैं, से प्रेरित होकर हिंदी साहित्य में पडीक्कमा कविता लिखकर ‘चम्पू कविता’ नामक एक नई शैली को जन्म दिया। यह उनके काव्य संग्रह का हिंदी साहित्य को एक महत्वपूर्ण योगदान है।
पैनल के सदस्यों ने पुस्तक पर अपने विचार भी साझा किये।

A Panel Discussion of A Happier You by Dr. Mukesh Jain!

17th June, 2023 at Arera Club was an evening well spent with the author DGP, Dr. Mukesh Jain and members of Club Literati, discussing his book, A Happier You.

We are always seeking the answers of what is happiness? Is it a desired profession? Or is it having kids with a loved one? Or the luxuries of life? Or is there some short formula for happiness? Almost every person binds happiness with skill but is it so? 

Most of our life is spent in the pursuit of happiness but how to find our happiness? 

The session was enlightening and filled with the discussion which answered most of these questions. 

Dr. Mukesh Jain while talking on his book A Happier You.

The author himself, Dr. Mukesh Jain started his discussion with a tidbit on Michelangelo. He said that once, Michelangelo was asked,  “what is the magic in your hands?”, to which he answered: “I don’t make statues, every stone has a statue in it, I just remove the unnecessary ones.” Likewise we should remove the hurdles in the way of us and our happiness. It might not be simple but it always works. 

It is true that hard work leads to success and it is not necessary that it also leads to happiness. 

The author raised the question of us seeking happiness and making happiness our final point, rather happiness has to be the starting point in leading a good life. 

Dr. Jain also discussed with the audience the gene happiness research work of Robert Levenson and Sonja Lyubomirsky. He talked about the experiments done on paralysed people as they were given a winning lottery ticket to see whether they become happy after winning the money. 

Role of genetic happiness, Veronica Huta and Richard Ryan’ work, role of meaningfulness, social relations were discussed as well. Dr. Jain concluded his discussion by stating that it has been proved that a giver is always happier and stays happy for a long period of time. 

Panel members Dr. Vinay Mishra, a Prof. Of Psychology, told the audience how he is asked often, whether he is happy working in Antarctica. He confessed that though it is very formidable to live in Antarctica, he was happy. He said that, “while we are still in a difficult situation, you have to manoeuvre your way through.” 

Recording the voices of their loved ones for later, helping each other to adjust helped him and his colleagues in the difficult time at Antarctica. 

Dr. Mishra says, “We have come far away from Freudian Psychology. We know how we create our own emotional distress and manage it, dealing with it.” 

He added  that happiness can be invited by altering your lifestyle and modifying your environment. 

Tips on modifying your environment:

  • Assertiveness: Put your foot down and say the things you believe in: satisfaction of speaking your mind out 
  • Withdraw if necessary: we venture into and realise and we are riding on the wrong bus. Rather than stressing,  you need to withdraw when necessary 
  • Compromise when it is required: have to leave a margin for other people 

Avoiding stressful thoughts, having healthy social relations play a big part in a happier life. 

Dr. Sangeeta Jauhari, another panel member, too shared her views on the book and happiness and shared the following points: 

Keynotes from the book to practise: thoughts processed changed 

  • To be optimistic in all the situation 
  • Be internal in case of finding happiness 
  • Do no follow things blindly 
  • Be alert to be a superhero 
  • Find your own success parameters 
  • Be happy and achieve something you want 

She also pointed out how necessary the book is for the students today! 

Mr. Raghuraj Rajendran, shared that the human mind is always looking for happiness. It is something that we are always enquiring about. When a person is religiously inclined, he would go to the religious books to guide them. Thus the book is the answer, and happiness was the motivation.

Mr. Rajendran stated that nothing could have stopped Dr. Jain from writing the book A Happier You, with such need and motivation around him. 

The session came to an end with the moderator sharing a few quotes from the book, her comments on the fulfilment curve and a few questions from the audience. 

Right to left: Dr. Vinay Mishra, Dr Mukesh Jain, Mr, Raghuraj Rajendra, Dr. Sangeeta Jauhari and Dr. Seema Raizada

The session was full of tips for happiness and recommendations of books. 

These are few listed here: 

  • If You Are So Smart Why Aren’t You Happy? 
  • Mindset  

Book Discussion: By The Sea

The discussion for the book, By the Sea by Abudulrazaq Gurnah started with an introduction about the club by Dr. Seema Raizada. Dr. Raizada also talked about Literati Inkpad magazine which has the section of “Our Choice” which includes names of the books from different authors and “By the Sea” was one of them.  The evening then went ahead with the introduction about the author by Adeena Syed. The introduction about the author included his history, his career and of course his writings. Anshu Vaish led the discussion of the book and told the Club Literati members about the book. Mrs. Vaish stated that though the plot is simple then the story holds you with emotions of betrayal, homesickness, empathy and much more. By the Sea, a profound work  with deep universal vision, is a story of an exile with a fake name.

Anshu Vaish, giving her review on By the Sea.

The fact that the book has common people as its protagonist who are trying to make a place in the world, makes it full of emotions, as well as interesting. Mrs. Vaish also read a few passages from the book, making the audience lean out of their seats to hear the work.

Dr. Seema Raizada giving her input on the book.

Mrs. Kaneez Rizwi shared that we have all been there in being in that non belongingness and that’s what she identified in the book.

Taneema Datta, a professor of economics, shared her views on the book and read her favourite passage from the first few chapters. The discussion was vibrant and full of interest and promises of more in future. And the evening was concluded with the vote of thanks by Shivangi.

Cultures and Rituals

Reading fantasy is fine is escape the reality but one need to read about reality too, to be able to live it in a proper way.

There are not one but many books telling us about the how to live a life. Another hundred books telling us the history of different time. Another thousands of books on how to be a success in life but as Dr. Kiran Cadha put it in her discussion on 15th January, 2023 at Bhojpur Club, there are not many books on rituals on Hindu weddings. Each ritual holds something important for the future of the couple’s life ahead so of course it important they follow each of it but do we all know about these rituals?

Club Literati brought forth the author of Dalhousie…through My Eyes, Echoes of the Heart…Dil Se, Ehsas: Dil Se and Magic of Indian Weddings which was the hot topic for our discussion.

Club Literati’s moderators, Manjusha Khanna and Parminder Kaur. The sessions was full of laughter and lessons and Dr. Chadha answered all the questions from moderators as well as from audience with all her heart and gave the insights on her own life.

She talked about numerous things and frowned upon few new generation practices where there is too much selfishness yet so little of self love. The author promoted self love saying, “You can’t spread happiness unless you are happy yourself and you cannot be happy unless you love yourself.”

The author sang a Punjabi wedding song at the end of the discussion for the audience and was joined by others too. The multi talented Dr. Kiran Chadha is not only an amazing writer but also full of life and lessons for not only youngsters but women all around and of all ages!

Celebrating Mr. Ajit Raizada

When I imagine a writer writing, I imagine him at dawn, most likely with a drink of choice, wondering of the words to write down. But writing is not done that easily. As Ajit Raizada himself said, “Morning thoughts made my poems” and experience, of course. For his poems are not of one sitting or of one year, they come from different time periods, from different years, from different situations and feelings. 

Finally compliling his poems, not all of them, but many, into a book. Club Literati had the honour of launching his book beautifully titled “Sooraj k Aansoo” at Arera Club on 23rd December, 2022. It was a special day not because Mr. Raizada launched this book but also because it was his father’s birthday.

The evening was a talk about the ‘sight of a poet’, understanding and appreciating the writings and much more. Mr. Raizada also shared his latest poem, written on the women in Afghanistan, which was hot from the oven, as Mrs. Neelkamal, our moderator, put it. She started the event with the introduction to the author, reciting dew of his poems and making the event run smoothly with her comments and handing the stage to out special guest one after another. 

Manoj Shrivastava, a retired IAS officer and a renowned poet was the special guest at the event. Commenting on the title of the book he said that many of Mr. Raizada’s poems are ‘heliocentric’. He also made audience think about the line where the poet confess, ‘mujhe sooraj nahi chahiye’, transaltion: ‘I don’t want sun’. He alps categorised the poems in the book as poems about sun, Mahabharata, reality, modernisation, and nature. 

A young poet and a beta reader, Nishant Upadhyay, gave a young generation insight on the poems. 

Dhruv Shukal, renowned Hindi poet said,” Kavita ho jati h, Kavi bhi uske hone k liye tayyar rahe.” He gave a very different insight into the poems.

The book was launched and the poems were celebrated and many came forth, eager to get the book and signed from the poet. It was an evening full of inspiration, confessions, love for poetry and warmth from the people for the poet himself.