Union Minister for the Development of Women and Children, Smriti Irani, officially launched her first novel, Lal Salaam, a crime thriller released by Westland, at the India International Center in New Delhi.
At the Jaipur Literature Festival event, following opening notes from Karthika VK, editor of Westland, and S Prasannarajan, editor-in-chief of Open magazine, Irani was in open conversation with journalist Vir Sanghvi.
Speaking about her long career from television to politics, Irani spoke about living her life on her own terms. âI wanted to explore life because I recognized that the only thing I wanted to do was live without preconditions. I recognized very early in life that there are consequences to any decision I make. But when I left home, I told my parents that I would rather bear the consequences of my own actions than yours, âIrani said of her decision to join the television industry.
Irani was the face of Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi of Balaji Telefilms (2000-2008) and starred in many other TV series before joining politics. In 2019, Irani, at 43, was the youngest minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet. “I went out to live my life and then the story happened,” the minister said.
The book, which came out on November 29, revolves around Police Commissioner Vikram Singh, who is stationed in Ambuja village of Chhattisgarh and seeks justice for the murder of his friend and fellow police officer Darshan. For the book, Irani was inspired by the April 2010 Maoist ambush against CRPF personnel near the village of Chintalnar in the Dantewada district of Chhatisgarh, which resulted in the deaths of 76 CRPF members.