About the book
‘From the pen of a cop’ is a book containing articles by me published in
various newspapers, and a few poems in English and a few Bhajans in Hindi
on Maa Vaishno. The poems and Bhajans remained unpublished till date
except the two titled: ‘Darkness’ and ‘Light’ which were carried in May 2019
by Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration, Mussoorie in
the Memoir taken out on the occasion of the reunion of 1969 batch of civil
The articles herein were published in The Tribune, Hindustan Times,
Daily World and Daily Post.
Articles in The Tribune include 58 ‘middles’. There are 22 others carried
in Sunday Reading, Sunday Spectrum, Saturday Plus, Chandigarh Tribune
and on Oped page. ‘Tips on home security’ suggested by me and published
in ‘CHANDIGARH CALLING’ has also been included.
Hindustan Times published 8 articles in ‘Spice of life’ column, and 2 in
Daily World articles comprise 5 ‘middles’ and 2 opinion pieces.
Daily Post carried 10 ‘middles’ and 1 opinion piece.
Thus, total number of pieces in the book is 109.
Permission to use the articles for the book was most graciously granted
by the Editor, The Tribune; Editor, Hindustan Times and Editor-in-Chief,
Daily World, for which I am deeply indebted to them. Permission from
Daily Post could not be applied for as it has since closed.
The credit for launching me onto the path of writing undoubtedly goes
to The Tribune. ‘Bomb in a basket’ was the first piece published as a ‘middle’
on July 07, 1992. Since then, the paper published a number of articles by me
on varied range of subjects. I am grateful to the Editors of The Tribune of
relevant periods and their staff for showing their indulgence to me.
I am also grateful to the Editor, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh for
accepting and publishing articles by me in ‘Spice of life’ column and in HT
I am immensely beholden to the Editor-in-Chief, Daily World who
showed special love and affection for me by not only accepting and publishing
the articles but doing so very promptly; my joy knew no bounds when I saw
them in print the very next day I submitted the articles.
Though Daily Post is no longer publishing now, I must express my
gratitude to the Editor(s) and staff of the time when the articles were accepted
The ‘middles’ and articles for ‘Spice of life’ are mostly based on real-life
experiences. Though characters have not been named in a majority of the
articles, the idea behind narrating the incidents had been only to convey
some lessons of life, or to bring out certain aspects of it. I never intended to
tread on somebody’s toes. However, if unwittingly, I have hurt anybody’s
feelings, I sincerely apologise.
The book also contains 21 poems in English on ‘opposities’ like ‘Pain’,
‘Pleasure’ etc. These were composed in 1995-1996. The spark that kindled
the endeavour waned by the time I completed the 21st, and hence the 22nd,
which had to be on ‘Boldness’ could not even begin. In March 2017, another
effort was made to re-commence, but it didn’t bear fruit.
There is one more poem: ‘Let’s let our hair down’, composed in May
2019 and posted in the WhatsApp group- Golden Jubilee 1969 Batchwhich
has also been included.
14 Bhajans/Bheten to Maa Vaishno, composed in 1995 in Hindi,
including a ‘Stuti’ in the beginning and an ‘Aarti’ in the end, too, find place
in the book. Unlimited grace of the Maa at that time enabled me to compose
Mohindra Publishing House, Sector 32 D, Chandigarh and its
proprietor, Dr Akshu Pahuja, deserve my gratitude and much appreciation
for undertaking the task of bringing out the book in record time. Mr.Dev
Pahuja, husband of Dr Akshu Pahuja, took immense pains to guide me in
the endeavour and to finally make it a success. His effort is all the more
praise worthy as he had been simultaneously working on two more books of
mine. I place on record my indebtedness to him. Members of staff of the
Publishing House, specially Mrs Renu who worked on the book on day-today
basis, deserve a special mention for their tireless work, and I express my
gratitude to them.
My daughter Purnima Lal helped me a lot in computer work, specially
in searching ,on internet, old articles in The Tribune, enabling me to copy
them and email to the Publishing House. I express my heartfelt thanks to
Last but not the least, the book would not have seen the light of the day
but for the help and cooperation extended by my wife Geeta Lal who bore
with me ungrudgingly while I spent hours on the computer compiling the
material and arranging and rearranging it. Besides, she has been the source
of inspiration for some of the ‘middles’. I sincerely thank her, and dedicate
the book to her and my daughter Purnima.
Chandigarh P. Lal