A Simple Rethink
Author Dilip D’Souza had reviewed Avirook Sen’s Aarushi in these pages recently. But he has had a rethink about some parts of the review. He writes: “My review of Avirook Sen’s Aarushi set off conversations with a few people, especially about my penultimate paragraph. In it, I say of the Talwars, who are now in jail: ‘My personal dilemma is a troubling one: I think they are innocent, but I can’t say why I think so’. The problem is that there really is no dilemma. The foundation of our justice system is, and has to be, the presumption that an accused is innocent. Not just by the trial courts, but by us all. They are innocent until they are proven guilty. One of the people I was speaking to about this put it this way: This presumption of innocence is ‘fundamental to anything that claims to call itself a civilised society’. I must thank this person for clearing my muddled mind on this point and I regret having writing those lines. The Talwars are innocent until they are proven guilty. Despite their conviction and incarceration, and because of Sen’s book, I believe their trial did not prove them guilty. That’s the simple lesson of Aarushi."
More churn in the publishing industry. The genial and hands-on CEO of HarperCollins India, P.M. Sukumar, has quit the firm. He will be replaced by Ananth Padmanabhan, who is currently in the sales side at Penguin Random House. Interestingly, Sukumar put in his papers the same week HC launched Harper Black, its latest imprint for crime fiction, probably the first ever wholly dedicated to this genre, with which he was closely involved. So all those closet crime writers, the Jo Nesbo and Henning Mankell devotees, know where to knock if an idea strikes them.