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Author Interview on Operation Liquidus

Author Interview on Operation Liquidus

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Published by M C Raj
Author M C Raj is interviewed by writer V B Rawat on his latest novel Operation Liquidus.
Author M C Raj is interviewed by writer V B Rawat on his latest novel Operation Liquidus.

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Published by: M C Raj on Aug 31, 2012
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In Interview with Author M.C.Raj by Vidhya Bushan Rawat
MC Raj is a prolific writer and perhaps the most innovative writers inthe recent history whose horizon of thoughts is extraordinarilybeyond cosmos. He has developed new perceptions as he refuses tofollow any set pattern of ideologies. He has in fact reconstructedsome new thoughts like Dalitology, Dalithink and Dyche.Interestingly, M.C.Raj is not just writing reams of papers for the sakeof writing. His writing emerges from his vast range of groundexperience working with people and at Booshakthi Kendra, which hasbecome a pilgrim centre for a number of activists working atgrassroots as well as developing new perceptions on electoralsystems world over. One is amazed at his capacity to write so muchwithout affecting his intensive engagement of the larger societalstructures. His latest novel ‘Operation Liquidus’ is sensational, as ithas all the important characters in it that have a larger than lifeimage in the hearts of their followers. Author Novelist M.C.Raj spoketo Vidya Bhushan Rawat about his latest novel and future enterprises.
It is your 18
book and perhaps the fourth novel. Your otherbooks were mostly analytical writings, theorisation of Dalit culture.Now, for the past two years, we have seen a steady growth of fictionwriting from you. Are you now focusing more on fiction thantheorisation or do you think your fictions themselves are extensionsof your theories?
Fictions are a way of letting loose the bridles of imagination. If afiction has boundaries it may lose the flavour of fiction to that extent.I have taken up to fiction writing only because I enjoy it and not muchbeyond that. However, when I write fiction it is impossible for me notto theorize as I am basically a philosopher and that shows up even if Ido not mean it. I have maintained the intensity of writing theorybooks along with my fiction writing. In 2011 Jyothi and I wrote thebook on World Parliament of Indigenous Peoples and this year I havewritten the book on Electoral Systems. Writing any book is a passionfor me and I do not give up one for another.
What is the idea behind the murder of the Pope in this novel? Isit a real life incident when attempt on the life of Pope John Paul II wasmade or is it purely fictional? Many time fictional works reveal real lifestories even when they are claimed fictional. How do you thinkCatholics would react to it?
In this novel the Pope is poisoned by a group of Cardinals in thechurch. I have read the many volumes of the History of the Popes andhave also studied Church history. Some of the happenings in the
church are just horrible. My concoction of the killing of the pope is just an imagination of how financial stakeholders work in the church. The Vatican itself has many business connections and is a financialempire. The intricacies of business are the same all over the world. There have been also speculations about the death of Pope John PaulI. But I am not going into the truth or non-truth of what has happenedin the Vatican. My mind has played with the gleanings I gatheredfrom my readings on the underbelly of the Church. I always thoughtthat if Jesus came a second time to this world the Pope, Cardinals andBishops would be the first set of people who would murder him.Perhaps Operation Liquidus has woven a story from manypossibilities. As for Catholics, it is left to them to react in a way theydeem fit. I have no guess on that.
More than killing of the Pope by a group of Cardinals, it may beyour audacity to have got Jesus married to two Muslim women thatmay shake the conscience of the Christian world. The Catholic Churchdoes not allow its priests and nuns to marry precisely because of itsnegative views on sex. On this score I think even the protestantChristians will be scandalized by your ‘fictitious imagination’ of Jesusmarrying two Muslim women in his second coming. Is this for this thatthe Christian world waited? Your take on this.
The second coming of Jesus may mean many things to manypeople. For me Christians are only chasing a mirage by waiting for hissecond coming. This novel is a way of looking at a young man Jesuswho was in love with two young girls in the Bible. I have stretchedthat a bit in my novel. He may come as a gay, as a married man, as aman who wants to bring Christian Muslim unity through hismarriage… I don’t know. Sex is a normal human behaviour. I don’tknow why people should be scandalized by a fiction. Just as believershave freedom to fantasize on next life, a novelist enjoys the freedomto fantasize on this life. I have also imagined a lot about love that cannever be limited by the paradigm of one man – one woman only. Inany case most women in the Churches believe that Jesus is theirultimate lover. Some scandals are good for the progress of humanity.
Speaking of audacity, I also am dazed that you dared to equate Jesus and Karl. I am sure it is Karl Marx that you mean. In fact youhave stuffed your novel with meaning by making Karl die whenCardinals make an attempt on the life of Jesus. What is your equationof both?
In one of the international conferences in Bad Boll in Germany Itold the audience that Jesus was the first Marx and Marx was thesecond Christ. It was a Theology institute. The audience took it verywell. One does not need extraordinary courage to say this. Both thesehave lived at different times in history. If they happen to live in ourtimes I am sure they will be identical twins. I have equal admiration
for both.
I am amazed at the numbers of characters that form part of your fiction and their co-relations. They trot globally and then mergeat the Booshakthi Kendra. But I am sure a large number of thesecharacters are part of your life. Have you ever spoken to them thatthey are part of your fictions? As far as I know in your earlier novelRaachi too, there are characters that have been close to you. I meanhow they react to you once they read your work.
No character in this novel, except the last one in BooshakthiKendra is part of my life. Only in Raachi I have brought some realcharacters in a fictional style of writing. This is because Raachi isbased on my life. I decided to mix some truth with some fiction. Butall my other fictions are not related to any real persons whom I know.I myself do not know the actual existence of the characters that Ihave created. But as you say many readers who know me personallyhave always tried to relate the characters of my novel to people whoare related to me. I feel this is the success of my novel writing thatreaders always feel something real is happening around them whenthey read my fictional fabrications. As a fiction writer I know the valueof such connections in the mind of the readers. Am happy to knowthat my fictions bring a sense of realism in the readers. All thecharacters of Operation Liquidus are not converging in BooshakthiKendra. After the assassination of Kris, who is Jesus, by a group of cardinals it is only his two wives who come to Booshakthi Kendra. Theglobal trotting is my attempt to bring some poetic and romanticdimension in my novel. Since I am an international traveller I bring allmy discoveries of the world in my novels bit by bit.
Operation Liquidus is true to many things, which many of uscould not do ideologically. I mean, it looks like an iconoclastic fictionwhere most revered figures are dealt with albeit in fictitious ways.Christians may not issue death threats to you for ‘killing’ the Popeand for marrying Jesus with two Muslim women. But what aboutother important characters whom you have dealt with in this novel?How about the Gandhians, the Ambedkarites, the Buddhists, even theRSS? You do not seem to have spared any power. Is there anymessage in your demystification of important personalities of ourtimes?
The message is for the readers to glean. Though OperationLiquidus is a fiction its axis is the second coming of Jesus, for whichall Christians all over the world are waiting. I have just turned roundthis idea and made him come in the form of Kris to encounter manyicons of history and of our time. As an author I have used mydaydreams to create many encounters with such icons. Some masksthat some of them wore are bound to fall. Even waiting for the secondcoming of Jesus by Christians can be said to be a grand fiction and

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