CHENNAI: Imagine a world that’s greener, cleaner and kinder. That’s the kind of environment debutante author Nishika Bajaj wants for the kids to grow up in. Her book titled Tiny Tara and the Tree of Life is a work of fiction aimed at children, more specifically, kids aged 9-12 years. “I wanted to begin with children’s book genre because reading has shaped and influenced me since childhood. It instills the right and wrong in you and moulds you as a person,” says the author.
Nishika has an MBA degree and is also a post graduate in journalism, and a banker-turned-author. She recently won the LinkedIn Top Voice 2018 title for her insightful leadership articles under the philanthropy and global development category. Born in Prayagraj, she moved to Mauritius in 2014 and lives there with her family. Her two-year-old son is the inspiration behind her book.
Talking about nature as the theme of her book, she says, “I realised the wrath of nature when I moved to this island. The effect and actions of calamities are visible here, unlike India, where the interior regions are not that disturbed compared to coastal areas that usually get flooded during monsoon. Considering global warming is increasing at an alarming level, it is important to sensitise children about these critical issues before it’s too late,” says Nishika.
The author can see children turning into green crusaders. From ‘go green Diwali’ to Swachh Bharat campaign’, they’re aware and participative in environmental activities. Nature needs a voice and she believes that it can be brought to the fore through kids.
“The book revolves around tree spirits. Nature was the heart of worship in ancient times and used to be an integral part of our culture. Trees, especially, were used as a symbol of idol worship. They used to be an important part of the mythology. This is also a reason we see many trees in temples. However, nature has started to take a backseat. I’ve also brought in the aspect of equality through hierarchy among tree spirits. The book is divided into four parts — house of air, water, earth, and light. In the end, all of these are required for the tree to grow.”
Growing up in a small town, Nishika had the luxury of spending more time with nature. Prayagraj reminds her of the green trees, a beautiful park near her house and the confluence of three rivers. “The book talks about cutting down of trees and a shrinking green cover due to infrastructure development. In a nutshell, this work represents the timeless battle between man and nature by personifying nature as tree spirits whose territory is being encroached upon by human beings. It’s in the format of a teacher explaining to a student for a better understanding,”she says.
Not just a writer
Writing is more than a hobby to Nishika Bajaj. She recently won the LinkedIn Top Voice 2018 title for her insightful leadership articles under the philanthropy and global development category.
The book, published by Notion Press, was launched in January 2019. It is available on Amazon for `250.