Fiat justitia ruat caelum

Road Humps and SidewalksRoad Humps and Sidewalks by Kalyan C. Kankanala
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What’s in a thriller?
Obviously a story- that thrills you with surprises and unpredictability. But can a boring courtroom drama thrill you? Or a story that that has a sizeable part full of legal implications.
In front of a judge two counsels are arguing about various aspects of law. They are trying to get closer to the truth or might in fact, trying to hide the truth. Nobody will believe there will be thrill elements. It may be exciting, ornate-but thrilling? No way!
Well- the debut novel by Kalyan Kankala- Road Humps and Sideways is enough to correct your misconception about the thriller. Kalyan is an esteemed practitioner of intellectual property act and his insight into the nook and corner of the intellectual property rights has been transformed the story into an entertaining fast paced thriller.
The story runs on two parallel threads- one is the spread of a mystery disease and consequential profit motive of a multinational drug firm and the other is the near silent rise of fame of a blind lawyer.
it is virtually a battle for the eminent physicians of CIMS (Charaka Institute of Medical Science) to tackle the killer disease which is threatening to take the form of a silent epidemic. Equally anxious is the famous Dr. Krishna about the cause and treatment of the disease –because it is virtually a disease suddenly rising from hell. And it strikes swiftly-like cold jaws of death. An unknown team from the institute is working day and night for revelation of the killer disease. And
“Our team is of the opinion that it is a mutant variety of the Human Immuno Deficiency virus, which causes Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS).but unlike HIV it attacks all kinds of immune cells in the body and also other cells. As a result of the attack, the patient is exposed to number of infectious agents and succumbs in less than a week. Our team is calling it the Immune Killer Virus (I virus) and the disease, Immediate Immuno Deficiency Syndrome.”
It was like searching a needle in haystack-because nobody knows the possible remedy. But suddenly there seems a faint ray of light at the end of the tunnel- a near unknown doctor practicing at a hamlet shared his experience with the India famous doctors of CIMS. That he had successfully applied a drug of neurological disorder patented and solely manufactured by a multinational giant. The experiment proved miraculous-it really cures. Probably Dr. Krishna had uttered, just like his predecessor yeas ago
“Oh million mudering Death, I know that this little thing
A million men will save
Oh death where is thy sting? Thy victory oh grave?”
But it is the cruel corporate world of profit and loss-and the multinational major has weighed their profits higher than the death of, say probably a few thousand black Indians. As news of the findings spread, thanks to media-they saw their golden opportunity. And there was an artificial production scarcity-in India. The motive is simple- sell the drug at ten times the price.
Desperate doctors first sought the help of the Government- but after all a People’s Government is a people’s Government. The effort proved futile. Then in a desperate ploy-they went to generic firms to manufacture the patented drug. Nobody was with them-all doors are seemed closed-when one small player turned out to help them.
Have you ever tried to snatch the prey from the mouth of a starved lion? Have you ever thought of the crushing impact? It will tear you into pieces- unless of course you have a gun blazing. More devastating will be the impact here- the multinational giant will tear the generic drug firm away. It is a patented drug and they will take full advantage of it.
From there the story gets the new turn- a turn full of unpredictable swings.
The CIMS and the drug firm desperately need a lawyer to go with their cause of saving lives. Ironical it may be heard-but here a lawyer can give them a breathing space only. But no lawyer of the field is ready to defend their case.
Nobody except one……
Blind lawyer Arjun- who’s till date only fame was winning a case of celebrity for supposed violation of intellectual property rights fearlessly stood for the cause of ailing humanity. It was truly a David versus Goliath fight-the opponent lawyer for the multinational is the undisputed leader of the field.
Arjun will be merely a cannon fodder in front of him.
Or will he? if he-then why the cruel corporate will apply all their nasty tactics to tame this modern day Partha-who may be sightless-but whose inner eye is capable of piercing through your mind-like a sharp arrow-right on target.
There will be spine shivering murder attempts- bribery attempt to the honourable man- pressure tactics to withdraw from the game-all contributing together to a very palatable meal.
And what will be at the end?
To whose side Nemesis will take?
Discover after reading- and utter- oh, a Daniel has came to the judgement.

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