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Updated: December 25, 2013 16:28 IST

Chasing dreams

NIKHIL VARMA
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Vipul Mittra with his book 'The Dream Chasers'.
Vipul Mittra with his book 'The Dream Chasers'.

IAS officer and author Vipul Mittra talks about the aspirations of the youth

One of the keys to enjoying your life is an ability to see humour in all situations, contends IAS officer and author Vipul Mittra. Vipul is the principal secretary for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Pilgrimage and Devasthan for the Gujarat government. His second book, The Dream Chasers is a tale of six youngsters chasing their dreams. “The idea for this book came to me when I was watching Three Idiots. I realized that most youngsters do not know the dreams that must be pursued. They spent time in trying to achieve goals that are not feasible in the long run. This is the message I want to convey to the readers. You must have a plan B in mind and must be prepared for any eventuality. In the long run, drive and ambition will go a long way in the youth achieving their goals. You must put your mind over your heart for success.”

Do his books take incidents from his own life? “It does take inspiration from some aspects of my life. You cannot write in a vacuum. However, this book is a work of fiction, with parts of my college life and my observations about the youth making an occasional appearance.”

He adds, “My first book, The Pyramid of Virgin Dreams, was a sardonic account of the life of a bureaucrat. This book is very different. It deals with the youth and their aspirations in an increasingly globalised planet. I did not want to write a self help book as the youngsters would be bored. I wanted to put my point across in an effective manner.”

Mittra contends that it is very important to have a sense of humour, when you are an author. “I think most of our problems arise from the fact that we take things very seriously. I use humour as a medium in my book to make it more interesting. You need to observe events closely to get material for humour.”

“Indian writing in English is fast maturing and now caters to a large market. Apart from literary heavyweights such as Arundhati Roy, Amitav Ghosh and Vikram Seth, novelists like Chetan Bhagat are also becoming very popular. I think it is an encouraging trend.”

Looking ahead, Vipul intends to keep writing and is looking at current affairs for inspiration. He contends, “I am thinking of writing something involving godmen and their political connections. I am yet to start work on the third book.”

The Dream Chasers is published by Random House India and is available in stores across the country.

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