An Illusion

Telugu Original: Rachakonda Viswanatha Sastry

Translation: Prof. Venkateswara Rao Vemuri

Translator’s Note:

Sri. R. V. Sastry had been hailed as “the greatest Telugu writer of our times” by his admirers. Born in dire poverty, this left-leaning lawyer and humanist achieved fame for his “Six Liquor Stories,” where he uses the rustic Telugu dialect of the poor living in the Visakhapatnam district of Andhra Pradesh. Mr. Sastry’s style is inimitable and it is almost impossible to get the flavor of the village dialect in this translation. The Original title of the story is Maaya.

Publisher’s Note:

You can read the Telugu original here ->


With the hard-earned diploma rolled up in his sweaty hands, Murthy obediently stood in front of his senior – waiting for advice. It was then the senior dispensed his advice. He instructed Murthy to heed that piece of advice – always! Why?

Because, “that”, he declared, “is the formula for success in life.”

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It’s My Choice

By : Jyothi Valaboju

Translation : Bharadwaj Velamakanni

Publisher’s Note:

We are pleased to bring in you a second translation of “It’s My Choice”, this one commissioned by the author herself. Unlike our ruwiray style, this one is a breezy read and keeps close to the story tempo.

“Sure,” said Lord Brahma, being comfortable with the fact that he just procured a supercomputer that would assist him automate a lot of his tasks. He gave the whole issue a good thought and in no time he designed and developed a special kind of chip that would be embedded inside every new-born male child.

“Shalini! Are you done with cooking?” screamed Ramesh, “Oh come on! When would you learn to finish things on time? I was really impressed with your looks, qualification, education and family status, but never had a hunch about the life getting this bitter! So much for your parents’ claims when we got engaged, that you are an excellent cook and a pretty clean person … Look, even the couches and the TV screen are dirty.  If only the food at the cafeteria is good enough” … he grabbed the lunch pack and left.

 “Well, blame it on my fate,” Shalini muttered to herself , remembering the whole show wherein her parents got her married to Ramesh.

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It’s My Choice

By Jyothi Valaboju

Translated By : C.Sharada

Minor modifications : MH

Publisher’s Note:

We are pleased to bring a translation of writer, blogger, editor Jyothi Valaboju‘s socio-fantasy story.The Telugu original was published in the Sunday supplement of Andhra Bhoomi daily dated 15-Jun-2009. A web version is available at the link -> here.

A small explanation about our translations : The way we translate is to keep close to the Telugu original. Some times it looks too literal and annoys the professional translators and the purists. However, we maintain our style deliberately so that non-Telugu people get acquainted with Telugu idioms, expressions and metaphors and through them come closer to knowing the Telugu way of life.

Latha contemplated for some time and stared at the forehead of Rama Krishna, who was eating popcorn. Then, the L.E.D screen appeared on his forehead, on it she saw: his salary – 15,000, assets – one house, debts – 50,000, bank balance – 4000, has the responsibility of two unmarried sisters, dislikes extravagance. If his wife is also working, his problems might lessen, wants a wife who can adjust herself to the existing conditions.

“Shalini! Done with the cooking? I am getting late to office. Should I shout every morning? You never complete any work on time. At the time of pelli choopulu, your parents boasted, ‘Our daughter cooks well, keeps the house neatly’. For being particular about education, beauty, family – all those — for getting married, my life is ruined. I am getting late to office every day and the food served in the office is awful to eat. My fate… my fate…”

“What is this? Why have you not changed the sofa covers? Can’t you see dust on the T.V? What do you do the whole day staying home? When you know how to watch TV, don’t you know how to dust it? Should every thing be told?” said an irritated Ramesh as he went out taking his lunch box.

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Slaves’ Heaven

By: B. Ajay Prasad

Translation: MH (Based on the first version of the translation by Sujatha Gopal.)

Publisher’s Note:

A critical look at the enslavement of working class people by the corporate culture.

Everyone led an opportunist life. No one entertained permanent friendship or enmity. What was prevalent was any sort of excuse for mutual cooperation for the sake of temporary or permanent benefits — collaboration at work, interest calculations, shares, house plots etc.

One living creature killing another living creature is a natural phenomenon. The hunted runs faster than the hunter – fear predominates the instinct to survive.

If living beings develop various bodily organs and mental faculties for their security, that is called evolution. But if humans, live under fear for their protection and safeguarding their livelihood, what would that be (called)?

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By Tripuraneni Gopichand

Translation : C.Sharada

Edited By : MH

Publisher’s Note:

The late Tripuraneni Gopichand’s take on a base emotion rampant in humanity and which drives actions and events.


Listening to these words, Brahmanandam seethed with anger. What if his wife comes to know about it when she comes back? How would she feel? Would she believe in him even if he tells her that she doesn’t know anything? Doesn’t he think that both the friends have done it together!


Brahmanandam was surprised when he saw Kanthamani and Syamala Rao together. Moreover, both of them smiled at him as they passed by. Not just Brahmanandam alone, those who knew about them would have been surprised seeing them together. Brahmanandam, who felt that he knew human psychology thoroughly, was not only surprised but also lost faith in his own intelligence.

He wouldn’t have been stunned had he seen any other couple together. He doesn’t have such views that a man and a woman should not go about together. Even if they are seen together, he doesn’t have the disposition to look at them foolishly. He would have considered it as a natural phenomenon.

There must be a strong reason if such a person was shocked seeing Kanthamathi and Shyamala Rao together. The reason is this:

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By G. Yagnya Valkya Sarma

Translation : MH

Publisher’s Note:

The original story was published in the November 2010 issue of Rachana magazine. A man’s sentiments towards man’s best friend.


You saying that you do not want to come here for this reason does not seem to be fair. I am not able to tell them the same. Raghava and our daughter-in-law — how much they are looking forward for us. Chinnari has hugged me and requested me to stay here and quarrels let Grandpa join you” said Janaki.


Just as I returned from my morning walk and stepped in the verandah, Janaki came to me and said, “Raghava telephoned”.

Janaki is my wife.

Raghava is my son.

He is working as an engineer in a big motor car manufacturing company in Delhi.

I asked, “What’s the matter? He wants us to leave Narasaraopeta and come to Delhi to stay with him? Isn’t it?”

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