16 June, 2021

Prakash Karat

After our rout in Bengal, I'm a shattered man. But I am not surprised...

Illustration by Sandeep Adhwaryu
Prakash Karat

After our rout in Bengal, I’m a shattered man. But I am not surprised. Remember, a year ago I had predicted to my old comrade, Marxist historian Eric Hobsbawm, that the Left was “beleaguered and besieged” and that I feared we would fare poorly in Bonga-Bonga land. Interestingly, around that time, I had also run into my favourite crime fiction writer, Ian Rankin, in London. I had shared my concern about the Left’s decline with him too. Ian waxed philosophical as a Stones song, You Can’t Always Get What You Want, played in the background. “Look Prakash,” he said, “in my university days I tried my hand at new wave and punk and failed miserably. But then I reinvented myself and started arranging alphabets in different permutations and combinations. That’s how I became a writer. Well, the long and short of it is that reinvention is the name of the game. Look at how (Bobby) Dylan sold The Times They Are A Changin’ as a jingle to the Bank of Montreal. You have to recast...

More from Ajith Pillai

Latest Magazine

June 21, 2021

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section