Amit Varma is a novelist and blogger based in Mumbai. He has worked in journalism, television and advertising, and has written for publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian and Wisden, as well as many Indian publications. He won the Bastiat Prize for Journalism in 2007. He writes the popular blog, India Uncut. His first novel, My Friend Sancho, was published in India in May 2009, and quickly became the biggest selling Indian novel released that summer. He aims to bridge to gap between literary and popular fiction with his novels, and is currently at work on his second book. In April 2009, Business Week named him as one of India’s 50 Most Powerful People.
capturing India's zeitgeist in my novels. The 19th and 21st centuries collide here, and with so many great stories of human conflict demanding to be told, there is no better place to be a storyteller.
India needs another freedom movement. Despite becoming an independent country in 1947, I believe that we haven't yet become a truly free society. We elect our governments to rule us, not serve us, and don't take our liberties seriously enough. We don't have anything like America's First Amendment to protect our freedom of expression, and we don't really care about it. We accept, and even demand, moral policing too easily. We look to the government for solutions, when it is often at the heart of many problems. We treat our population as a problem, when it is our greatest resource, if only our people were allowed to reach their full potential. Our unfree markets constrain the ingenuity and enterprise of our one-billion-plus people, and the state believes that it must run everything, and control everything, and be our mummy and our daddy. For us to flourish as a truly free society, that must change. Thankfully, we are a democracy, and that change is in our hands.
Writing, blogging, books, films, music, food, erotica, poker, cricket, laziness and the futility of attempting weight loss, sleep cycles and the futility of trying to sleep at night - and the weather.
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