Debutant Prasad’s Karma Echoes S L Bhyrappa’s Fiction

The novel tries to make sense of death rites from a modern perspective

Published: 20th May 2014 08:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th May 2014 08:14 AM   |  A+A-


BANGALORE: A young writer is excited about the enthusiastic response his debut novel is receiving.

Called Karma, Karanam Pavan Prasad's book is about a Bangalorean who returns to his village to perform the death rites of his father.

While the significance of the rites dawns on him during his 15-day stay, the course of his life changes in unexpected ways.

“Someone put a part of my novel on a Kannada blog and that set off a big discussion. Though the bloggers have not read the novel, they were all animatedly discussing its theme. I responded that they should read the novel first," he told Express. The book is selling faster than he expected.

Karma is about a modern man's questions about faith and orthodoxy. “I was confused before writing this novel. I met veteran novelist S L Bhyrappa and discussed my idea with him. He suggested a framework for the book,” he explained.

In fact, after reading this novel, many told him they were reminded of Bhyrappa’s Vamshavriksha and Nele.

Pavan Prasad, who works as a web designer, is not new to writing. He had already written two plays, Beedi Bimba Rangada Tumba and Purahara, before he wrote this novel.

“I am basically a theatre person. I act and direct. We have staged Kannada plays in Infosys, Cognizant and other IT companies," he said.

Pavan Prasad calls himself an accidental novelist. "I started writing Karma as I wanted to stir things up on the literary scene. But even before writing this novel, I was curious about the death rites and their significance after my grandmother’s death."

To make time for the novel, Pavan Prasad stayed away from theatre. "I learnt about the post-death rituals from the learned Nagaraja Shrouthi and included them in the novel.

Scholar Shatavadhani R Ganesh later corrected the Sanskrit shlokas that appear in this novel,” he said.

Pavan Prasad's next novel will tell the untold story of a famous nun and her connection with Bangalore. "I am collecting details about how the city was 30 years ago,” he said.

(Karma, Concave Books, Bangalore, ` 125. It is available online on


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