I have always been a fan of courageous,brave women unafraid to speak the truth,unafraid of consequences.And one such women of courage and integrity happens to be Shobha De.I would read her columns in the times of india,which were feministic,brave,acidic,more because there was this woman,who was an icon,for her writing and the intellectual genes cells/blood inside my body thanks to a poet father and intellectual mother,I had grown up on a diet of writers,poets,brave,courageous heroes and heroines.And to me Shobha De and Amitav Ghosh were few such icons.When I was informed Amitav Ghosh was to visit Bhubaneswar,I certainly couldnot wait to listen to the Iconic writer,who is one of India’s best-known writers. His books include The Circle of Reason, The Shadow Lines, In An Antique Land, Dancing in Cambodia, The Calcutta Chromosome, The Glass Palace, Incendiary Circumstances, The Hungry Tide. His most recent novel, Sea of Poppies, is the first volume of the Ibis Trilogy.His last book Sea of Poppies was shortlisted for the prestigious booker prize and recently won the Crossword Book Award.The name and the legacy of remarkable books didnt stop popping in my mind,when my Papa informed me of Shobha De...I certainly was looking forward to july-28-2009.Amazingly,the whole of Soochna bhawan was packed,which tells the relevance of literature today,which was the topic on which both along with Orissa's literary stalwarts Shri Ramakant Rath and Shri Soumya Ranjan Patnaik,presented their lectures.
Shri Ghosh,amazed me with his humane,grounded spirit and amazing memory,he reckoned almost all his friends he had in Orissa and even confessed to enjoying his visits to a rural village at purushottampur and puri temple and konark,being a bengali,he has a soft corner for orissa like many bengalis do.He even spoke of significance of orissa,in his books and places he has visited be it burma,malaysia,singapore.
Personally,besides admiring the fiesty Golden woman of words,Shobha De,I had this mental image of her being a snooty,snobbish diva.But with great admiration and awe I was stunned to see her radiant warmth and kindness of heart.Than did I realise all that image i thought her to be having was a media-stroked-image of a celebrity,but in person she has this glowing,unforgettable charm,thats difficult to forget.My papa always had said,''I want you to be like Shobha De''.My Mother and brother are fans of her exquisite fashion sense which could be bohemian sometimes blended with flashy jewellery that would make anybody else look pompous but when Shobha De wears them,she looks like a fashion diva.Well anytime I feel low I read Shobha de,I love and admire her for her caustic tongue and unafraid spirit..she is unapologetic about her writings and views.She certainly gives no care in the air if someone is offended by her views,truth or writing.She believes that journalists,writers need never be suppresed and the day a person,or journalist tries to suppress the truth afraid of consequences,or society then he or she is obsolete of committing a crime towards humanity.