Rating: 4 Stars
Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line is about the real-life prominence of missing children in India and the lack of media coverage and police interest for the issue. Deepa Anappara was a journalist with firsthand experience and sheds some light on the issue through a fictional story.
The story follows the life of a nine-year-old boy named Jai who is keen on reenacting a TV crime series by playing detective when a boy from his slum goes missing. At the onset, it seemed like a fun mystery written from the perspective a child. When the first child goes missing, the minimal attention given by police authorities is almost comical and I didn’t quite understand the gravity of the situation. I thought he would turn up at some point in the story and it would all be some kind of joke. But that was not the case at all. When others slowly started disappearing and I realized the true gravity of the situation, it was heart breaking to see that the only people who cared were direct family and the kids playing detective. As the book concludes, I found myself desperate for a sense of closure or natural resolution of the story’s major conflict. But the real tragedy of the situation is that there is no closure for the families affected by this loss and there is no understanding of the cause.
I recommend this book to awareness about a crucial issue that is present in India today and the need for the involvement of a higher authority to resolve this problem at a macroscopic level.
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