Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Amarnath disaster

All of a sudden India has become a nation  obsessed with Records only --- no matter what the consequences.  The Uttarkhand disaster is still fresh in the memory -- where the unending rush of pilgrims combined with Nature's fury to wreck almost total havoc in what many believe to be the land of gods.   That area has yet to recover.  And off we go again, to invite another disaster , the bigger the better perhaps.
This year's Amarnath Yatra, again in a very ecologically sensitive region, is going to be for 59 whole days with the "Government leaving no stone unturned to ensure a record number of pilgrims"?  A record number of pilgrims in an ecologically sensitive environment suddenly turned into a pilgrim tourism peg?   Are we in our right senses?
Instead of this chasing of a self defeating record, why not create a record breaking beautiful pilgrim complex elsewhere amongst our hordes of temples,  one that will  challenge the amounts of money that pilgrims routinely pour  into the coffers of Saudi Arabia at Mecca?  or those of the Vatican in Rome?
Help the country's economy earn, rather than spend on disaster management and relief and rehabilitation.

Does that make sense to anyone?

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Praise from a new fan for BEYOND DIAMOND RINGS

Appreciation is nothing short of Manna from the heavens for an author.  And if an old book is read, pleasure is more than doubled.

“I always wanted to know about the partition from people who lived through it, perhaps because I come from a migrated family too.
But each time I went to Pakistan and asked my paternal or maternal grandparents, I got vague answers or an eloquent silence. Now I understand maybe, it was too painful for them or I was too young to listen to their stories….”  Wrote Zoya Tariq after reading my 2009 novel BEYOND DIAMOND RINGS.
Appreciation is nothing short of Manna from the heavens for an author.  And if an old book is read, pleasure is more than doubled.

Recallling her reactions to the novel, a post Partition generational saga of how the migration enabled strong women from each succeeding generation of Sindhi women to evolve from home makers  into global citizens, Zoya Tariq had this to say:
Maya's plot hooked me from the beginning. It has to be my favorite among all.   Also, loved the chapter 'Card Room Confidences'. The confessions were quick and it was interesting to see how the conversation was flowing.
Pinocchio was painful. I loved how the stories went around five generations, from Dadi to Nikita, Nina and to their children.
I remember you telling us that each one story shows how the women comes out as the powerful one, not the weaker sex.
It was quite hopeful and rather strange to see men as the needy one in some way or the other. Not the typical 'I'm greater than you and I make all the decisions'              Thank you for writing this book.”

Certainly made  more than one of my days.