SINGAPORE: A cross-border novel on preserving culture, tradition and identity among the South- Asian diaspora has been launched here.
'Invisible Ties', penned by Nadiya AR, was jointly launched yesterday at the city-state by Indian High Commissioner Jawed Ashraf and Pakistani High Commissioner Nasrullah Khan.
It is a story of a Karachi girl from a rich family, Noor Kamal, who reluctantly agrees to marry a Singapore investment banker of Pakistani-origin, but faces a problem from a cultural perspective, said Nadya, whose first novel is 'Kolachi Dreams'.
The girl is trapped in a loveless marriage with Meekaal Kalim, but finds succour in studying psychotherapy, Nadiya added.
The book, which is the 45-year-old psychotherapist's second novel, has been commended by leading Indian personalities, including Mahesh Bhatt, Shobhaa De and Pakistani poet and columnist Salman Tarik Kureshi.
"The divisions of South Asia are blurred as the diaspora meets overseas. Bombay and Karachi are reunited on foreign shores," said Iftekhar A Chowdhury, research fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS) and former foreign minister of Bangladesh, during a panel discussion on South- Asian cultures at the book launch.
The book also includes Mughal history, which is a rich common heritage of India and Pakistan, as well as history of Malacca -- a Malaysian city, which is the location of one of the earliest Malay sultanates -- and Singapore, where most of the South-Asian migrants arrived.