Bangalore International Centre had organised the Book Discussion “BARA” authored by Late Prof. U R Ananthamurthy and Translated into English by Prof. Chandan Gowda on Saturday, 17th September, 2016 at its auditorium. The Discussants were Dr. Indira Chandrasekhar, Prof. N Manu Chakravarthy and Prof. Hans Varghese Mathews. The event was chaired and moderated by Prof. Vanamala Viswanatha.
Written during the Emergency, Bara is a major story by one of India’s greatest writers. Set in mofussil North Karnataka, it narrates a civil servant’s quest for an ethical life amidst desperate social circumstances. Satisha, an idealistic IAS officer, strives to do his best for the affected people, but the logic of local realpolitik proves elusive. Through a series of vivid local encounters, Bara offers a powerful allegory of India's political modernity. It was made into acclaimed films by MS Sathyu in Kannada (Bara, 1982) and in Hindi (Sookha, 1983). The English translation of Bara is published by Oxford University Press (India).
The well-known film Director Mr. M S Sathyu, who also directed the film in Kannada (Bara in 1982), was also present during the discussion. He also addressed the audience and shared his experiences during the making of the film Bara.
Prof. Vanamala Viswanatha and Prof. N Manu Chakravarthy touched upon the various facets of Prof. Ananthamurthy and the gradual transformation of his social and political thinking that often found reflections in his writings. Agreeing with them, Dr. Indira Chandrasekhar highlighted as to how Satisha’s disillusionment in “Bara” was in fact a disillusionment felt by Prof. Ananthamurthy himself as he saw the gradual decline of liberalism around him. Prof. Chandan Gowda talked about the interview he had with Prof. Ananthamurthy which now forms a part of the translated book “Bara”
The audience participated in the Q & A session with much enthusiasm.