Arambh Ki Gyarah Kahaniya comments on the injustices and evils of society. Tell me something more about your book.
Arambh Ki Gyarah Kahaniya is a humble effort to empathise with the ever increasing desensitisation in the moral fabric of our present society. It is a hopeful attempt to state the heavy hues which our collective ego has developed as a response to the blatant loss of innocence. In the format of short stories’ collection, Arambh Ki Gyarah Kahaniya
Why did you choose to have a pen name? Anything significant about it?
Perhaps to respect a long standing tradition, I chose the pen-name of Alexshendra Venus Bakshi which I think is a combination of history and mythology, both of which are close to my heart.
You have taken up a bold step to embrace Hindi literature when our young generation is inclined more towards English literature. Do you sometimes feel intimidated by your choice?
I feel empowered by my choice of writing in Hindi language because it connects me to the very heart of our country. I can feel and celebrate the soul rhythms of our culture and sing the vocabulary of its essence. My best wishes are always with my dear friends who have chosen English literature as their calling.
Which contemporary social evil do you think is plaguing our society the most – is it casteism, gender bias or religious fundamentalism?
I think gender bias is the fundamental evil from which all other evils like casteism or religious fundamentalism emerge. Discrimination based on gender is a result of pollution of the very ‘Sanskaras’ of the person and provides the corrupted validity for all other kinds of discrimination.
There was an era when Hindi literature had jewels like Prem Chand and Bhisham Sahni. In contemporary times, we have not witnessed any great writer. What could be the possible reason behind it?
The depression caused by repeated invasions of this country led to a lack of interest in its essential culture. Premchand and Bhisham Sahani rebelled against that depression and established themselves as jewels whose brilliance dispels the darkness from the realm of Hindi literature. The counter reaction of the same darkness made it most difficult to replicate the brilliance of jewels like Premchand and hence the absence. After 65 years of our independence, the depression is ending and I am sure that Hindi literature will find its new bearers of light.
Due to westernisation, Hindi literature has lost its charm. Do you think a day is not far behind when it will fade into oblivion?
Hindi literature has its own cosmos which now needs to be more celebratory in all its dimensions. There is no doubt that its charm needs to be friendly to our new generation. One can change the direction of once view but no one can change the direction of one’s heart beat. Hindi literature is the heart beat of this land and even if we keep looking at occident for ages yet the heart beat shall remain ancient and same.
What do you think should be done to revive Hindi literature?
It has to be understood that Hindi language is the language spoken by the common man. Hindi language is not Sanskrit language and so Hindi literature has to end its romance with forced Sanskritisation, which alienates the common man from Hindi literature. Everything else is procedural, which naturally follows the increasing numbers of readers of Hindi literature.
Do you think government can save a language from dying, or is it the job of the writers?
Government with its immense resources can revive, preserve, protect and promote any language but it cannot be done without writers dedicated to the worship of that language.
Are your personal life experiences reflected in your book?
It has been a good fortune for me to spend my childhood in different cities, which gave me the opportunity to appreciate the unity and diversity of our fabulous culture and I feel that those experiences have positive bearings on my writing.
Other than writing, what is your passion?
Other than writing which is my soul, my passion is learning about the history of various cultures and countries. I have attempted my hand at poetry as well. Few lines to fill the opportunity are here:
There is no dearth of destinations O Poet
But there is so much a lack of paths for you.