Desh Sanchar Chautari- EP 31

A man with highest devotion in writing (Video)

Dr. Dhurba Chandra Gautam, a household name to those with interest in the Nepali literary scene, is one of the most productive authors in the country; has over forty books to his name. Most of his works focus on contemporary social issues.

His first published work was Parichaya Ki Birakti, a poem in Hindi in an Indian magazine Utkarsa in 2019 BS. His Nepali work was first published the following year, Tatasthata: Asafalata in Ruprekha, a leading literary magazine in Nepal. He was awarded Madan Puraskar in 2040 BS for his book Alikheet and bestowed the title of Akhyan Purush for his contribution to Nepali literature. An octogenarian, he is still writing; he aims to publish his memoir next year.

A multi-talented personality, he gained fame as a poet and singer in his early years. He practiced journalism for some time. He had a long teaching career at various colleges and universities. The same pioneer storyteller, Dr. Gautam, stepped in as a guest at Desh Sanchar Chautari to share his experiences, moments of joy and embarrassment, throughout his career, both as a teacher and litterateur.

“I do not consider myself as a writer of the highest caliber, but I am a writer of highest devotion,” he shares modestly, “I compare writing to breathing – aliveness and spontaneity are two roles of breathing…and.. writing is like that for me,” he explains.

Among the various anecdotes he shared, one included his meeting with his inspiration, Bhupi Sherchan. He became so inspired after reading his interview that he continued following Sherchan’s every writing. As he came to Kathmandu, he went to meet Sherchan as a fan. All he knew was that Sherchan resided in Tahachal, so he knocked a couple of wrong houses until he finally tracked the destination.

He has lived through various political changes in the country. Whatever the system is, there are hardships to authors to express themselves, ‘but we find a way out’- Jasto Kaal Hos— as he puts it. He states that authors have not found it easy to make a living, but they have endured hardships. He includes himself in the list.

Dr. Gautam is not supportive of the current educational grading system. “No one has offered me sensible reasoning for following the current grading system,” he lashes out, “what bad practice did it replace and what positive has it added?”

He does not see the merit of publicly soliciting applications for appointment of Vice Chancellor at Tribhuvan University. “While the announcement itself may not be bad, the outcome depends on the selection committee and its ability to select the best person for the role based on merit,” he adds sarcastically, “we have a history of publicly soliciting applications for the Prime Minister’s post too.”