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Amitav Ghosh, Vikram Seth and Salman Rushdie: For opening Indian writing to the world

'All these great writers are situated in the Indian bhasha'

August 13, 2008

U R Ananthamurthy, perhaps India's greatest living writer, on the Indo-Anglian Literary Trinity

I rate Amitav Ghosh very high. For me he is as great a writer as George Orwell. When Ghosh went down to Tamil Nadu after the tsunami and reported it, it reminded me of Orwell. He is a great writer who writes about great realities.

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I feel Ghosh or Vikram Seth should have written in their own languages. All these great writers who write in English are situated in the Indian bhasha (language) and hence we have a very rich literature coming in the bhasha. In the past great literature has appeared in the bhashas, but I would also like to add here that I am not opposed to any language.

Regarding Salman Rushdie, he is a product of Bombay Hindi. Can you imagine him writing without the Bombay Hindi background. If he would have written without the Bombay Hindi background, then he would have written in BBC English and this would have sounded like reporting.

U R Ananthamurthy spoke to Vicky Nanjappa.

Image: Amitav Ghosh. Photograph: Rajesh Karkera. Vikram Seth. Photograph: Paresh Gandhi. Salman Rushdie. Photograph: Paresh Gandhi

Also read: English killing thirst for knowledge | 'People living in Karnataka should learn Kannada'
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