A project by Binayak Mondal, Indrayudh Sengupta, Penli Mongla Jamir,  Madhu Priyanka Kannabiran, Ahmedabad, India

She had decided to turn shutter a month back. Since then, it has been only texts. I did miss her voice sometimes.

Shutter Out

I was really looking forward to it. Hyderabad was nice and all but the corporate life was not for me. The silence of the cubicles crushed me. As I turned around the corner, the roar of the city greeted me soothingly.

Oh! I could see her. Her beautiful locks blew across her face as a bus rumbled by. I ran up to her and embraced her screaming, "I’VE MISSED YOU!". She signed back that she had missed me too or at least that's what I hoped. I let out an audible sigh.

Learning sign language had been tough but I knew that a relationship needs hard work. I was willing to take up the challenge. She had decided to turn ‘Shutter’ a month back. Since then, it has only been texts. I did miss her voice sometimes.

We walked past our usual loud and lively dhaba and into Khamosh Kafe. It was a new joint popular with town Shutters.

A deafening silence engulfed me as the door shut. It was unbearable. My thoughts shifted to the work cubicle back in Hyderabad- that dreary silence where the only comfort was the tapping of the keyboards. I snapped back as she pulled me to a chair. She pointed at the menu and gestured, asking me what I would like to eat.


She left crying silently and disappeared into the cacophony of a temple procession.


This book was born out of the compelling need to communicate in today’s hyper-decibel society. The ever increasing problem of miscommunication is evident. Some sociologists have even suggested that spoken language will turn redundant in the near future. Such a path is without a doubt a cause of concern for fear of losing valuable cultural foundations on which our nation operates. The decision to introduce a curriculum augmenting the spoken language was thus deemed essential and was agreed upon amidst much commotion by the Education Ministry. The linguists remaining in the country were gathered to put together this Introduction to Lip Reading series for elementary school students. We are sure that such a primer in basic communication will help the young ones grow into a more intelligible and resourceful members of society.