A book penned by Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel, capturing anecdotes from her life as a teacher and a minister, was released Tuesday. The release was preceded by a short film which projected her as a woman who made it big in a man’s world.
Titled Ae Mane Hamesha Yaad Raheshe (I will remember this forever), the book projects Anandiben as a fierce conformist, upholding family values through most of the 35 episodes recounted by her in the book. Published by Ahmedabad-based Rannade Publication, the book was released by Gujarati writer Dr Chandrakant Mehta and spiritual Guru Swami Aadhyatmanandji.
In the book, Anandiben — who served as a teacher before joining politics — touches upon various social issues, mainly related to women and children, as experienced by her.
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A chapter titled “Aavi Ghatnao Pan Samaaj Ma Jova Male Te Kevu Vichitra” ( Strange that such incidents are also found in society) talks about a young unmarried teacher being sacked by Anandiben, then Gujarat’s education minister, for having a relationship with a married man who had two children. The CM recounts how she agreed to the family’s demand to terminate her service so she could return home from an outstation posting.
The book avoids details. There are no dates of the incidents, and names of characters have been changed, it claims.
Every story, however, comes with a summary note. There is also one that takes after the famous Bollywood song “Dukh bharey din beete rey bhaiyya” (The days of misery are over). This story is about the first girl from a Muslim family who was educated after Anandiben helped set up the first secondary school in Dhordo.
“All this was written four to five years ago…It was all in the computer. Anar and Sanjay (her children) sent it for printing and presented me a book. I then asked friends to read it. Following a positive response from them, a book has come now,’’ the CM said.
In the chapter titled “A Lafanga Majnu Ne Path Bhanaviyo” (Taught a lesson to the Majnu), she narrates how as the principal of Mohiniba School she traced a stalker. Posing as one of the schoolgirls over phone, Anandiben claims to have trapped the culprit and caught him red-handed.
The book has been priced at Rs 100 and the publisher has declared that the collection from sales will go to the Kanya Kelavani Nidhi (Girls’ Welfare Fund). This is the second book on Anandiben in a month, the first one being a coffee table book titled Anandi Marg, which deals with her political career.