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Books changed my life in ways I cannot even encapsulate. When life was full of failures and grievances and there was nobody to rescue me, I took to reading and found the solace in it. I was always seen in a shabby clothes and corners were my place to sit apart from others. I didn’t even know how to talk to people. I used to fumble a lot. They called me names, they laughed at me. They ignored me and didn’t care even to be seen walking with me, and, always put me in the worst category. But as the saying goes “every cloud has a silver lining” I took the bull by the horns and started working hard to better myself. My affair with the books started quite late when I was on the verge of completing my graduation. I used to rob magazines from the college library. I still remember my pocket money was 50 rupees out of which 30 was spent on traveling and food, the remaining I saved to buy books at the Wheeler shop at the Wadala station. Later on, I participated in “Hindustan Times Book Club” and ended up winning Crossword Voucher for the well-argued opinion. This was the first time I appeared in the newspaper and believe me seeing myself in print was the most exhilarating feeling I had ever felt. I didn’t tell anybody about it because at that point of life I wasn’t sure about sharing my personal life mentioned in the paper. In the past one year, I have made some good friends who are very supportive and care about me. I have also started a library and have more than 500 books. I write and perform at open-mic whenever I feel like and guess what I am always the first person to take the stage.

--Krishna Shivkumar Yadav

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