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Saturday, January 5, 2013

Baby Haldar---- An Indian Maid-Servant Who Became The Author Of Best-Seller Books

The early life of "+" Baby Haldar, born in Kashmir, is not different from million of women living in traditional environment of sub-continent. Her mother left her father a habitual drinker in Mushiabad when she was 4-years old. Her mother married an exservice man, she spent her childhood with an abusive step father. She could attend school intermittently upto sixth class. At the age of 12 she was married to a decorator where she gave birth to first child at the age of 13. She successively gave birth to 2 more children. She started working in neighborhood as housemaid. Finally in 1999. in the age of 25, after years of domestic violence she left her husband, escaping to New Delhi with three children on board. Now as a single parent she had to work in homes as maid-servant to support her two sons and a daughter. She encoutered several exploitative employers in her life. The last employer of Baby Halder, a writer and a retired professor of anthropology, Parmod Kumar, who was the grandson of renowned Indian literary giant Munshi Premchand, living in Gurgaon, a suberb of capital New Delhi, seeing her interst in books, while dusting his bookshjelves. He encouraged her to read first the leading authors. starting with Taslima Nasreen's autobiograsphical Amar Meyebela (My Girlhood), about a turmultious youth and deep anger on a woman being born in a poor siciety. This deeply moved Halder and turned out to be a turning point in her life, as it was to inspire her own memoires, later on. She zealously started reading other authors. Subsequently, going on trip to South India, Pramode bought her a pen and a note book and encouraged her to write her life history. Which she did late at night after work and sometimes beteen the chores, using plain- matter of fact-language in her native Bengali. When Kumar came back after a month she had already written 100-pages. (To Be Continued)

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