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Sense and sensitivity

Amit Verma's debut novel touches some issues relevant to our society

June 13, 2012 08:09 pm | Updated 08:09 pm IST - New Delhi

Author Amit Verma.

Author Amit Verma.

“We have all grown up with the subtle and not so subtle message that our country is alive...,” comes Amit Verma's answer when asked about the term used for the subcontinent as ‘living entity'. The debutant novelist of “The Lives and the Times” is an associate professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Texas.

The author has skilfully focused on the middle class in particular, exploring its mindset and the manner in which it affects its surroundings and is in turn affected by it. He believes that it is the middle class at both national and international level which plays an important role in shaping the society at the global level.

Talking about the inspiration behind the protagonist of his story, he says that it is the life itself.

The story is refreshing and does a humorous take on some of the pressing issues the country is facing today. In a conversation among the characters, the author highlights some of these problems like rampant corruption, lack of infrastructure, and pervasive desires to blame politicians. “Yes, we all have a sense of contempt for our politicians and administrators. This far outweighs our sense of shared history. In fact our sense of a shared history is far outweighed by even our frustrations and anger at the often below par performance by our national cricket team, and once for every four years by the Indian contingent at the Olympics,” says the author.

Amit believes that the Indian novelists are immensely influential at world literary standards and have now stepped into a role that affects the society at large, initiating conversations on relevant issues, “I can only see this trend turning into an avalanche”, states the author. Amit is currently working on its sequel.

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