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Jaipur Literature Festival 2015: 'Girls have more responsibility because they're better managers'; Sudha Murty discusses motherhood, women empowerment

Prajakta Hebbar | http://imsopraj

First published: January 24, 2015, 4:56 PM IST | Updated: January 24, 2015
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Jaipur Literature Festival 2015: 'Girls have more responsibility because they're better managers'; Sudha Murty discusses motherhood, women empowerment
Sudha Murty talked on a variety of subjects ranging from her latest novel, women empowerment, her grandmother and her childhood in Karnataka.

Jaipur: Dressed in a simple cream silk sari and wearing her smile as her brightest ornament, noted writer and social worker Sudha Murty had to weave her way through the throngs of audiences jam packed at the Baithak hall on the third day of the ongoing Jaipur Literature Festival.

With an audience comprised of a large number of school uniform-clad children, there was a palpable energy among the crowd as festival organiser and co-speaker Namita Gokhale introduced Murty, wife of Infosys' Narayan Murty talked on a variety of subjects ranging from her latest novel, women empowerment, her grandmother, her childhood in Karnataka and her first job.

Speaking about her latest book, 'The Mother I Never Knew' (Penguin, Rs 250), Murty said, "The book comprises of two novellas that explore two quests by two different men -- both for mothers they never knew they had."

Murty added that one of the stories from 'The Mother I Never Knew' has already been adapted into a Marathi film titled, 'Pitruroon'. The film, directed by Nitish Bharadwaj, narrates the story of an archaeology professor who comes across his look-alike, who is a farmer. Struck by similarities with the farmer, the professor devotes his time to find out the connection between their families.

The book, which Murty originally wrote in Kannada, was titled 'Rhun'. Talking about her heritage and her strong roots, Murty said, "Whatever stories I write, whichever characters I introduce, all my heroines have their roots in my personal memories of my childhood."

During the discussion, the question of women empowerment cropped up. Stating flatly that she considered women to be stronger and more organised than men, Murty however added that the definition of freedom and empowerment had different connotations in different places.

Murty also spoke about motherhood, and added that during her work with orphanages in all over India, she has realised the importance of a mother who brings up a child, rather than the woman who gives him/her birth. "Even in 'Mahabharata', we can see that Krishna is more attached to Yashoda, the woman who brought him up, rather than Devaki, who gave him birth.

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