Archive for May 2, 2012

Words of appreciation from Dr. Amitav Ghosh

Amitav Ghosh’s writing has always fascinated me. Although a mainly a fictional writer Ghosh has the ability of blending fictional characters in historical backdrop. For the last couple of years I have been reading his books and have read Calcutta Chromosome, Hungry Tide, Circle of Raesons, Shadow Lines, Glass Palace, Sea of Poppies and River of Smoke. I also read is non – fiction work In an Antique Land.

Top Left: Cover of Calcutta Chromosome; Top Right: Ronald Ross Memorial, Calcutta; Bottom: Ross' Medalion and the two inscriptions

Top Left: Cover of Calcutta Chromosome; Top Right: Ronald Ross Memorial, Calcutta; Bottom: Ross’ Medallion and the two inscriptions

I have read most of Ghosh’s books from the library of International School of Business & Media (ISB&M), where I work as a visiting faculty teaching Mathematics, Statistics, Operation Research and Research Methodology for BBA students.

Recently I picked up the courage to write to Amitava Ghosh sharing a link of my blog entry on Ronald Ross Memorial, which was the centre of attraction of Ghosh’s best selling novel Calcutta Chromosome.

My Letter to Dr. Amitava Ghosh

Reading Calcutta Chromosome at ISB&M, Kolkata library

Reading Calcutta Chromosome at ISB&M, Kolkata library (photo courtesy: Akash Mondal)

Dear Dr Amitav Ghosh, I am one of your numerous reader and one of the numerous persons to write to you. I have read many of your books but the one that fascinated me most is “Calcutta Chromosome.” Centered round Ronald Ross’ Nobel Prize winning discovery the book has left an enormous impact on me.

My first encounter with the Roland Ross Memorial, located on the western wall of the Presidency General Hospital, happened during my days of Post Graduation in the Department of Business Management of Calcutta University’s Alipur Campus (1998 – 2000). During the two years I regularly walked past the memorial and often stopping to read the inscriptions over and over again

I read Calcutta Chromosome a couple of years back and it was enough to ignite my decade old passion on the memorial. I decided to have a small writeup (along with photos) on the Ronald Ross Memorial in my Blog.

I am sending you the link Ronald Ross Memorial.

I would be ever grateful if you come up with your comments and suggestions.

Eagerly waiting for a reply.


Left: Inscription from Roanld Ross memorial; Right: A page fro Calcutta Chromosome showing the inscription

Left: Inscription from Roanld Ross memorial; Right: A page from Calcutta Chromosome showing the inscription

To my utter surprise Ghosh not only replied immediately but also posted my letter in his blog, along with a note of appreciation. In spite of his tight scheduled Ghosh also had the time to go through several other entries of by blog and have also appreciated my post on Kolkata’s Chinese Temples and Zorostrian Temple.

Dr. Amitav Ghosh’s Reply

From Kolkata Rangan Datta sends the letter below with a link to an interesting piece on the Ronald Ross memorial. There are several other interesting posts on his page, including an excellent piece on Kolkata’s Chinese temples and one on the Zoroastrian temple, which he visited when it was under renovation (the temples are otherwise closed to (non-Zoroastrians).

To see my letter and the reply visit Amitav Ghosh’s Blog.

Special thanks:

  • Akash Mondal, fellow photo enthusiast and my colleague at ISB&M, Kolkata for shooting my photo.
  • Gobinda Pahari. librarian at ISB&M, Kolkata.