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Gujarati novelist Dinkar Joshi does not have the academic background to be a historian. But he is passionate about history.

He has worked in Dena Bank all his professional life, but made time to write books. He has so far written 42 novels, 11 short story collections and published research works on the Mahabharat, Ramayan, Vedas and Upanishads.

Several of his books have been translated into Telugu, Hindi, Kannada, Marathi, Bengali and English.

Among his better known books is Prakash No Padchayo. It explores the relationship between Mahatma Gandhi and his son Harilal, who never got along with his father and converted to Islam.

This book was translated into Hindi and was adapted for the play, Mahatma versus Gandhi, which starred Boman Irani. The play was a big hit in English, Gujarati and Hindi.

Another of Joshi's books, Pratinayak, a biographical novel based on Mohammad Ali Jinnah's life, also raised some controversy in literary circles.

"I would say he was an opportunist and a selfish person," Joshi says about Jinnah.

"He turned to secularism when it suited him and became a fundamentalist when that suited him," he told Chief Correspondent Syed Firdaus Ashraf in an interview.

Design: Rahil Shaikh | Photograph: Keystone/Getty Images

Also See:
Advani puts Jinnah first
Jinnah speech: United India will not work

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