In reading his writings, it seems that unlike the Indian writers in English who have their faces so resolutely turned towards the west, he makes a genuine creative effort to fashion an alternate mythography that is fiercely provincial without being parochial.
His stories are fabulist whose intimacy with the Indian rural landscape is a protest against the rationalizing arrogance of the Western gaze, its abstract, and ultimately brute, powers of surveillance, and its defiling avarice. This is perhaps the reason why he is one of the most talked about the referred writers for the last two decades in India. Besides writing fiction, he is equally brilliant in poetry and has three collections of poems along with six books of short stores. Most of his short stories have been adopted into plays and staged by leading theatre persons and young theatre amateur groups as well, in different parts of India. He has also made critically acclaimed documentaries and docudramas for various institutions.
Rbert A Hueckstedt teaches Hindi and Sanskrit at the University of Virginia. He has also trtanslated some of thework of Mudra Rakshasa, Manohar Shyam Joshi and Manglesh Dabral.
His translation The Hunted, of Mudra Rakshasa’s Hindi novel Dandavidhan was published by Penguin Books India in 1992. In 1998 he won third prize in the annual translation competition sponsored by the British Comparative Literature association and the British Center for Literary Translation.
PRAISE FOR THE AUTHOR:
Uday Prakash is probably the best in his generation, not only in Hindi but in the entire gamut of Indian Languages, as a fictionalist. Considering the enormous progress Indian Language prose has made in the last three decades, this is no mean an achievement.
-Prasanna, Theatre person and writer
Uday Prakash’s stories are fables about survival amid the forces that have legislated extinction for all. Paul Gomra like his creator, Uday Prakash, or like Sir Vidia himself knows very well that he will not be liked any better if he stops yakking.
-Amitava Kumar, Critic and author of Passport Photos and A literary journey, from Mumbai to New York
The Golden Waist-Chain makes intricate use of folk tradition to produce a highly evocative narrative. The density of images, wages a silent war with the inexorable violence of the plot, the result being a story rich in texture and meaning. The almost objective perspective of a child, through whose mouth the story is told, strips the story of moral and social camouflage, and one emerges from the experience a little shaken, haunted by whispering myths.
-Sara Rai, from the editor’s introduction to The Golden Waist-Chain: Modern Hindi Short Stories, Penguin Books.