Tuesday, November 16, 2010
The Idea of Post-1947 Indian History
If you look at literary terms and look at Indian history in sensitive terms, you could probably say that Munshi Premchand wrote a sensitive history of Pre-1947 through his stories and fiction. But if you were try to chronicle a sensitive history of India, post-1947, you might like to look at the works of the great Hindi satirist, Harishankar Parsai. I would not even hesitate to state that Parsai was the best satirist that Hindi literature ever produced. If Premchand wrote about the problems of the middle class before 1947 and also wrote about the various Indian communities but Parsai did something else. Parsai painstakingly chronicled the entire history of corruption that India has seen after freedom in 1947. He spoke about the moral, financial, social, religious, political, bureaucratic corruption and the malaise that has plagued Indian life in it's many forms. When I look at recent events that get splashed in newspapers, I am often reminded of the works of Harishankar Parsai.