Black Warrant: Confessions of a Tihar Jailer
Publication: Roli Books
Page Count: 208
Where do I begin with? And what do I say about this book? Tihar Jail, Asia’s largest prison has been a muse of my fascination forever. And I always wonder, what is the life like behind those prison walls? Were they tortured, left to rot in dark prison cells, forever lonely. And whatever I heard on the Television felt like the garbled version of half-truths, half-lies that left me scared and bewildered most of the times. But when I read this book ‘Black Warrant’, all the notions I had were unravelled each layer at a time and torn into millions of pieces.
Sunil Gupta was an officer at Tihar Jail for more than thirty years. He recounted tales of such horrifying magnitude that I literally keeled over in overwhelming emotions. From the first man he met as soon as he joined, the notorious criminal Charles Shobhraj. To his first prison hanging to the formation of Janata party in 1977 behind walls of the jail and to his last hanging of Afzal Guru, he poured his out in a no holds barred confession in stark and honest words, which were then penned by Sunetra Chaudhary.
Sunetra with her pen turned the words into swords. Each blow cut me through my heart. I felt a prisoner of her words. I was riveted, shackled and petrified.
I must say that to tell such imagery stories are no mean feat and I applaud both the authors for allowing us a glimpse of a different world altogether. Where rich and mighty are the kings and poor were the slave, where loneliness is scarier than death itself and where laws are the means of convenience.
Black Warrant is a book that needs to be read in one’s leisure time so that one could soak up the emotions of each story and grasp the magnitude of life it holds. I highly recommend this book and implore you to read it at least once.
I give Black Warrant 5 on 5 stars
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Also, don’t forget to read : Nothing Ventured by Jeffrey Archer, if you love courtroom dramas