Mehr:A love Story, is yet another love story to smother the bruises between India and Pakistan’s history. Author Siddhartha Gigoo, with his latest novel, attempts to explore the territory of obsession, an obsession that dwells deep within love, patriotism and religion.
The book narrates a fascinating love story of a Pakistani woman and an Indian man and how their blooming love attracts the whirlwind of tragedy, a tragedy that is camouflaged by the mask of Indian military.
The love story that blooms amid the bedlam of India and Pakistan
"Love is an annoyingly difficult emotion to experience and understand. Every one of us struggles with it. In the novel, the characters get to explore some of love's deepest mysteries. As a novelist, I strive to understand the philosophy of love, and its politics," says Gigoo, who won the Commonwealth Short Story Prize in 2015 for "The Umbrella Man".
Gigoo, who has spent his days authoring and co-editing books that are set in the Valley, believes that love between the two countries, India and Pakistan, seems unimaginable, given the history, the political environment and the decades-long strife over Kashmir.
Can love unite the two enemy countries?
The author expresses his optimism that maybe love’s victory over hate can unite the ordinary people of the extraordinary circumstantial subcontinents. “But love between two people living on the two sides of the border is inevitable. Such love might write the future history of the two countries. Who knows what people are capable of when they are in love?" added Gigoo.
The odds of love uniting the two countries that have remained far from being friendly since the partition are possibly low, but if it does happen, then according to the author, future generations can be saved from the ruins.
Published by Rupa, Mehr, is a result of four years of dedication. The author considers that novels must take time. He further added, “The novel is set partly in Karachi and partly in the no-man's-land along the India-Pakistan border. I had never been to these places until four years ago when I started writing. The characters dragged me there.”
Siddhartha Gigoo's mantra for upcoming stories
When asked about his upcoming books, the author awaits the surprise what future store holds in for him. However, readers will be thrilled as there are more stories coming their way. The author’s mantra to keep rolling is ,’One more novel. One more story’.