It’s 11pm and Baby Halder’s day is just winding down. Dressed in a blue-and-white salwar kameez, the 39-year-old domestic helper finishes washing a pile of dishes, then mops the floor and turns off the kitchen lights before retiring to her small one-room flat on the terrace of her employer’s palatial, well-appointed house in Gurgaon, on the outskirts of India’s capital, Delhi.
But she is not yet ready for bed. Even though it’s late and she has to start work at 6am, Baby fishes out a notebook from the desk and begins to write. “It’s become a habit now,” she smiles. “I’ve got to write at least a few pages before I go to sleep. It’s fulfilling at the end of the day.” Baby has a lot of reasons to smile. Although she dropped out of school at the age of 12, the mother of three is already a popular author. Her first two books Aalo Aandhari (meaning Darkness and Light in Bengali) and Eshast Roopantar (Self-portrait) were literary successes in Bengali; her third book Ghare Ferar Path (The Way Home) was published by Dey’s Publishing, a Bengali publishing house, in December 2014 to rave reviews from the critics."
Read article by SNM Abdi from Friday Magazine.