Kashmir finds mention in Arundhati Roy’s latest novel released today

Srinagar, June 6: Arundhati Roy’s eagerly-awaited second novel went on sale today, two decades after her prize-winning debut “The God of Small Things” propelled her to global fame and launched her career as an “outspoken critic of injustice in her native India,” media reports said.

Roy became the first Indian woman to win the prestigious Booker Prize with her 1997 work, which sold around eight million copies and turned the young author into a star of the literary world.

In the years that followed, she turned to non-fiction writing, taking on issues ranging from poverty and globalisation to the conflict in Kashmir in essays that were often highly critical of India’s ruling class.

Her campaigning earned her the wrath of many in the Indian establishment and has clearly influenced her latest novel “The Ministry of Utmost Happiness”, which she has said took 10 years to produce.

Publisher Penguin says it takes the reader “from the cramped neighbourhoods of Old Delhi into the burgeoning new metropolis” and on to the troubled Kashmir Valley and the jungles of central India, racked by a long-running Maoist rebellion.

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