By Ananya Mukherjee
Needless to say, Tuhin’s sensitivities, through his commercially successful writing, have managed to throw the light on some very volatile social and political issues, raising eyebrows and making readers sit up and think beyond what was served on a platter of black and white on print.
Here’s a quick rendezvous with the man who exemplifies success and demonstrates as articulately as he writes that if you believe in yourself, no one can stop you from reaching high up in the galaxy and creating a whole new starry universe around yourself.
Looking back at the milestones reached, Tuhin reflects that the journey so far has been anything if not superb. “After That Thing Called Love’s success, there was a huge temptation to write something similar or perhaps attempt a sequel. But instead I decided to make each book of mine as different as possible from the other. Cricket was an obsession for me at one point of time before crass commercialization turned it into a circus. 22 Yards was my tribute to the sport. Of Love and Politics, which is my best work till date, attempts something unprecedented. It delves into how ideological differences impact personal relationships,” he shares.
Through these experiments of writing differently, Tuhin has matured not only as a writer, but also learnt the key points of better story telling. “There are times when readers surprise you by drawing interpretations that you’d not have thought of at the time of writing. I consider every perceptive feedback a learning experience. They invariably help you in your characterizations and make you be a better story-teller.”
Talking about his third book Of Love and Politics, which is likely to rattle cages, the author seems unperturbed by the repercussions, if any, following its release in March 2010. “Yes, it might ruffle some feathers.. so be it. Controversy is an inescapable part of an eventful life,” he says. The book is not only about politics, he clarifies. “Politics forms just the backdrop. The story is about relationships. To give you a brief summary of the plot- Aditya, like the Congress party he belongs to, tends to be elitist and aristocratic. Brajesh Ranjan, like his party, the BJP, swears by an overtly nationalist agenda and Chaitali Sen, the CPI(M) she represents swears by the disenfranchised. In this engaging and fast-moving tale, the author deftly entangles his three protagonists in a personal alliance, as volatile as the one their shape-shifting parties are continually forming and breaking. Through their journey, the author manages to give this compelling story some rare insights into the personal life of Indian politicians. I just found the whole idea damn exciting- a love triangle between Congress, BJP and the Left. Once I conceived the plot, I couldn’t rest in peace till I’d completed the manuscript.”
Tuhin is currently working on three books simultaneously, each of which, once again is very different from the other. He has worked on a film screenplay lately with Piyush Jha(director of Sikandar). Besides, he writes guest columns for the papers. “I’m open to writing TV shows, if they excite me,” he adds. Where does he see himself in the near future? “ A life less ordinary has got to be unpredictable. My guess would be as good as yours. On a more serious note, I should have completed 10 books by then. I’d want to write on issues of national and social concern,” he summarizes.
Though Tuhin, who’s not just an author but also a very dear friend and I had a preconceived notion of sharing this talk over a steaming mug of coffee on a rain swept monsoon afternoon in Mumbai, we decided to modify our plans to incorporate a larger audience on this platform for the time being. Till I catch him on our coffee date after the release of his next book, and this time probably with his newly-wed bride Ramyani by his side, here’s wishing him all the very best for a great year ahead.