Finding a voice in the valley
By Varsha Bansal
03rd September 2012 11:16 AM
In the current scenario when clashes in Assam have impacted the entire country, city-based doctor-turned-author Suravi Sharma Kumar launched her first book Voices in the Valley – a fictional story based in the backdrop of clashes in the North East.
Ask her if this clash was inevitable, she explains, “Ethnic clashes have always been a part of Assam. I have been working on this book for three years, and releasing this book at this time is a mere coincidence.”
Suravi was always into writing columns, apart from practicing medicine. And, having spent her formative years in NE, writing about the clashes in that part of the country was an obvious choice for Suravi when she decided to extend her passion.
“A few years ago, since I would spend time at home to take care of my children, I had time on my hands to do some thinking. That’s when I decided to write this book,” she recalls, adding, “And, even after years of independence, political clashes in Assam have been going on. I wanted to bring out that picture through my book.”
But, Suravi has also made sure to unravel the beauty of North Eastern India through her book.
“I have travelled all across the country, but I feel that the beauty of NE is unique and exotic – and I have tried to bring that out in my descriptions of that place.”
Voices in the Valley begins with the after effects of the Indo- China war of 1962 and concludes in 2010, chronicling the journey of its protagonist, Millie in between.
“According to me, this book has two protagonists – one is Millie, and the other is the backdrop of the story. Both are equally interesting and it is about how they intertwine in this book,” shares Suravi, who has been in Hyderabad for three years now, and works with Tata Consultancy Services.
So, what kind of research was involved to bring out such a political book? “Well, since I grew up in that area, I was already familiar with the political aspects. But, for indepth detail, I spoke to my father, my uncles, and others. And, I also took my inspiration from Shekhar Gupta’s book Assam: A Valley Divided,” she says.
Even though this book has strong political content, Suravi makes it clear that it is pure fiction.
“If someone is not interested in politics, they can simply read the book as the story of Millie.” However, she also adds that this book concludes with a conversation between Millie (who becomes a politician), her father and her mentor, about how the problem of ethnic clashes can be resolved in that region.
“North East has too many local parties, which takes away the feeling of togetherness and leads to internal conflicts. Probably if there is a national party, which is responsible for the functioning of that region, unity can be brought in among its citizens,” opines Suravi, giving a sneak-peek into the conclusion of her book.
Content with the response her first book has evoked, Suravi is now working on her second piece of literary work. “My next book is about the life of a medical student – focusing on domestic violence, explaining how it is connected with mental sickness,” signs off Suravi.
- Not a drop of Cauvery for people on its banks
- Dalit discrimination 'forms' in colleges
- Marine turtles giving Kerala a miss
- New mango named Nirbhaya after gang-rape victim
- Shortage of essential TB drug heightens risk to patients, others
- Four years of UPA-II
- Nine years as PM: What will be Manmohan Singh's legacy?
- Maharashtra’s aid to digitise rare manuscripts in Thanjavur
- CM can go his way: Ramesh Chennithala
- Names of UPA ministers will surface in IPL spot-fixing: Swamy
- Knowledge and faith
- BrahMos missile test fired from Russian warship
- BSNL Ernakulam posts Rs 390-crore turnover
- Incredible India! Cuppa at Rs 1,200 is Chiru’s idea of sustainable tourism
- IPL ban, takeover of BCCI sought
- Yasin Malik’s support for Sri Lanka Tamils a sham