In the dark shadows of this land, the silent tragedy plays out, of millions of women and men, boys and girls, who sleep hungry. The experience of chronic hunger in distant villages of India, as much as on its city streets, is one of intense avoidable suffering; of self denial; of learning to live with far less than the body needs; of minds and bodies stymied in their growth; of the agony of helplessly watching one's loved one's-most heartbreakingly children-in hopeless torment; of unpaid, arduous devalued work; of shame, humiliation and bondage; of the defeat and the triumph of the human spirit.
This is a book which tells the stories of how millions of destitute women and men, boys and girls, live with hunger in our land. It is the outcome of a year-long study of chronic food deprivation, rural destitution and hunger in Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Rajasthan, among aged people, single women and people with disability. We found that these most destitute individuals survive harsh, protracted and hopeless want in many ways, by simply denying themselves and reducing their food intake over prolonged periods; or by foraging for food in forests and eating food other people would normally shun; by sending even small children out to work, even in conditions of bondage, so that they are fed; by selling their scant belongings; and always as a last resort, by begging. This book speaks of the ways they cope with lives of unremitting want of hunger.
Such high levels of hunger and malnutrition are a paradox, because they stubbornly survive surging economic growth, and agricultural production which outpaces the growth of population (although it has worryingly stagnated in recent years).
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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