December 10, 2019
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So what did Vikram Seth take as a gift for the Naipauls? And how come the reclusive celebrity is being seen around a lot in Delhi?


Out For A Girl

For Vikram Seth, a visit to Khushwant Singh’s home for his two pegs of single malt and chit-chat is not that unusual. But in the last week, he’s been popping in to dinner with friends and even a book event by family friend and photographer Dayanita Singh at the National Gallery of Modern Art. Is he turning from recluse into one of Delhi’s P3Ps? But don’t be fooled: he’s hard at work—researching for his next novel, A Suitable Girl. Since it’s set in the here and now of Delhi, we’ll probably be seeing a lot more of the reclusive celebrity in the coming months.

The Purrs Overflow

A bottle of wine is the customary gift a writer takes when he’s invited to dine with the Naipauls. But when Vikram Seth visited them, he took something very special: a cat fountain for Naipaul’s cat! Because he’d heard from Lady Naipaul how the cat woke them several times in the night when it needed a drink of water. Like its owner, Naipaul’s cat is picky: it will only drink running water from a tap, so someone has to get up to open and close the tap after her. They had of course tried a cat fountain before but it hadn’t worked. Seth is convinced it’s because the previous fountain was the wrong colour!

Match Ready

The best-laid plans for a book launch can sometimes go awry. All the book launches planned for March 30 were called off because of the India-Pak cricket match that evening. The only author who’s daring to go ahead with his book launch on that day is Sarnath Banerjee. He’s offering a screening of the match at the launch of his The Harappa Files.

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