“Har Koi Chahta Hai Ek Mutthi Aasmaan”

Souradeep Roy of the Indian Cultural Forum interviewed Kiran Nagarkar, whose most recent novel The Extras has been published by HarperCollins India. Nagarkar ​discusses the conflation of mythology with science​. In this context, he makes a distinction between the ​present government and ​previous ​ones who, ​despite their conservative policies, did not interfere with either the notion of science, or with scientific institutions. Misinformation and "unofficial" censorship by ​people like Dinanath Batra ​will naturally thrive when the Prime Minister ​makes statements ​about myth​ical figures ​providing evidence of ​advanced science and technology in ancient India. Nagarkar ​rues the rapid erosion of ​reason and ​quality in ​our ​educational institutions. H​e pleads for change — for an effort to ​"aspire for the sky and its openness​". Only in such an open culture can we do justice to our legacies, such as the hundreds of retellings of t​he Ramayana​ in different Indian languages.