Silicon Valley Techie Proud to be BITSian Suresh Brings Light from Darkness in his Tamil Novel Velicham
Silicon Valley Techie Proud to be BITSian Suresh Brings Light from Darkness in his Tamil Novel Velicham
Can the fate driven events be overcome by large hearted individuals to replace the bitterness by sweetness? The love story set in the twin cities Secunderabad and Hyderabad, with interesting twists and turns involving a girl Trisha who is a Hindu from an extremely conservative Brahmin Iyengar family and Adil from a Shia Muslim family, this novel Velicham by Suresh indeed throws a bright light. In early 80s, starting with Pascal and then using Fortran, Basic, COBOL etal and then mastering C, C++, Java, Forth and many more low level assembly languages, when it came to writing a novel, Suresh decided to do it in Tamil. But why?
He says “After a 40-year break (from writing in Tamil), I had always wondered if I could ever regain the skills that I possessed when I was young. Last year (2020), I challenged myself to see if I could get back to writing in Tamil." Writing has always been his passion, even from a young age. In late 1980s, he had written a couple of satirical pieces about Telugu Demigod Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao - NTR that was published in Deccan Chronicle which offered him a job as a journalist. One must wonder how his life would've turned out had he accepted it.
When people ask him if he is retired, he responds “I am no longer profitably employed.” I am fortunate to follow my heart for the last several years since 2015. I went back to writing, my first passion. Started writing on socio-economic and political issues about the US and the world at large, got published in Fair Observer (have published 40+ articles.”
With Suresh holding a double Masters MSc(Tech) Computer Science and MSc (Hons) Chemistry from Institution of Excellence Birla Institute of Technology and Science – BITS Pilani there has to be a Pilani connection in his story and In Velicham, the boy goes to BITS Pilani for his education.
He strongly feels that Human beings develop biases since very young age and life circumstances reinforce them. Religious bias has a propensity to develop into irrational hatred. It requires a strong will, honest introspection and serendipitous events for people to shift their deep-seated religious biases. He decided to tackle this difficult subject in his first novel. Personally, he is not a reader of romantic novels still he decided to surprise himself choosing a romance theme for his debut novel.
Suresh has held leadership roles at Informatica, Redwood City, California and till date has four patents to his credit. Now, he is a passion packed writer, avid hiker, dog lover (His pet Apollo), amateur actor and environmentally conscious citizen. He spends part-time as a Standardized Patient in Stanford University School of Medicine, volunteer at The Health Trust, a nonprofit that works towards building health equity in Silicon Valley, and serves as a Board of Director in California Partnership to End Domestic Violence.
In his opinion, many youngsters spend a lifetime chasing the greenback $ with a backpack and not following their true passion. He himself feels guilty of that until one fine day, he realized that it is possible to quit the rat-race and do what is meaningful to him. For anyone who feels stuck, he says “if you know your true calling / passion, if you can be satisfied with what you possess, if you can define your identity that is not tied to your work, then you too can do what I was able to do. In my case, I was fortunate enough to come to that realization a decade ago, before I was 50. And am grateful for the personally rewarding journey the last 10+ years.
His life partner Jaya who has stood by him like the rock of Gibraltar has been his advisor, critic, care taker and he gives all credit to her for transforming him to pursue his passion. He is currently working on a short story collection, also in Tamil, and hope to have it done by end of this year. Today which happens to be Friday the 13th 2021 is his 58th birthday and with a mischievous smile he says Picture abhi baaki hai mere dost !! and gets ready to cut the cake and read the reviews which have been pouring from all parts of the world.
The novel Velicam has been brought out by Sandhya Publications, No. 77, 53rd Street,
Ashok Nagar, Chennai – 600083 Tamilnadu India Phone +91 44 24896979 Mobile: +91 98411 91397 and to get your copy click
Prof BR Natarajan
BITS Pilani Alumnus
C/o Jamuna Mishra Academy – JMA
Pilani, Rajasthan India 333031
About BITSAA: BITS Alumni Association (BITSAA) has emerged as one of the strongest alumni networks of any university. BITSAA International engages in charitable and educational activities by raising funds for setting up endowments, creating scholarships, rewarding teaching and research and generally promoting the development of resources at Birla Institute of Technology and Science at Pilani, Dubai, Goa & Hyderabad campuses. BITSAA International also aims to strengthen the ties, friendship and communication amongst former students, alumni faculty and friends of the Institute. BITSAA International provides a number of channels for people to stay connected with each other and with Birla Institute of Technology & Science. Notable other alumni initiatives for BITS Pilani include Prof SSR Memorial Teaching Excellence Award, Atma Nirbara multi crore Pilani Resource Centre by 75-80 batch alumni, Prashant Anuradha Palakurthi Research Endowment and many more. For more on BITSAA see https://www.bitsaa.org
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