Poor old watchman! ‘Why’ he asks, ‘do people come to my tank bund to end their lives’? Suicide has become almost a fashion at the small, deep Tank – with the explanatory letter left behind. Death seems to greet him monthly till one night he chances on a young lady in distress already waist deep in the water. The night is young as the watchman gets acquainted with the lady’s problems. At dawn, having said his piece, he leaves her to do what she will. And it is only many, many years later that he discovers what really happened the morning after the night before. R.K. Narayan examines the stifling conditions of the Indian Woman for whom economic independence seems the only answer to their problems.
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