Akhila Saroha: I would like to begin by congratulating you on the publication of “Behind Bars and Beyond”. How has the response to the book been so far?
Bhanubhai Patel: Thank you very much for congratulating me for my book “BEHIND BARS AND BEYOND. ” there is a slow response for the book because message of publishing my book has not reached to audience at large, we are now trying our best to promote the book.
Akhila Saroha: How has people’s manner of looking at you changed after you have earned so many degrees, diplomas and certificates?
Bhanubhai Patel: Usually Outlook or behavior of general public towards prisoners or ex-convict is of hatred and contempt. But in my case, it is totally opposite, I was well accepted by my friends, colleagues and everyone in society. Kudos goes to my educational achievements in the prison.
Akhila Saroha: Since you have read a variety of subjects, which is the subject that interests you the most or continues to interest you always?
Bhanubhai Patel: I studied various diverse subjects during my educational journey. But the most interesting and important subject I liked is human values and spirituality which I studied in M.SC.(in Human values and spirituality) Degree course which is also a need of time.
Akhila Saroha: What are your views about the present day writing? Do you think it does complete justice to the different classes and social groups of the society?
Bhanubhai Patel: I am glad that whole new generation of young writers is cropping up with interesting writings about varied subjects. My insistence is that there should more fact based writings rather than purely imaginary writings
Akhila Saroha: Are there any authors that you enjoy reading or any books which are your favourites?
Bhanubhai Patel: I enjoyed the biography of Nelson Mandela “Long walk to freedom” and “This is Water” by David Foster Wallace
Akhila Saroha: Do you think calling “Behind Bars and Beyond” a motivational work would be right? Or what other genre should be assigned to it according to you?
Bhanubhai Patel: “BEHIND BARS AND BEYOND” is really deserve the Category of motivation or inspirational Memoir as it is backed by my real life experiences which surely motivate any receptive person especially in student community or any person who want to accomplish his goal or achievement.
Akhila Saroha: Your writing has given a very strong introduction of your potential as a writer. Can the readers expect more from you in the future? Please share about your future projects.
Bhanubhai Patel: definitely, I would like to satisfy my voracious book readers by authoring new books. One is in pipeline and will be released soon is “HOW TO EXCEL IN EDUCATION”
Akhila Saroha: What is the story behind the title of your work, “Behind Bars and Beyond”?Bhanubhai Patel: Generally people believe that the time spent in the prison is a useless or vain or unproductive time. In my case I have completed 31 Degrees, PG Diplomas, Diplomas And Certificates Courses in just 7 Years which usually take more than 25 years if they are studied one after another as a normal routine custom of education system, so in my 8 years of imprisonment, I have completed work of 25 years. So the title “BEHIND BARS AND BEYOND”
Akhila Saroha: How easy or difficult was it for you to recall your life and experiences and present them in written form?
Bhanubhai Patel: it was difficult because I also narrated hurdles and complications of my school and college life and my prison experience to put them into written form. Thank for the Corona lockdown in which I got enough, peaceful time to complete this book in three languages Hindi, Gujarati and English.
Akhila Saroha: Are there any personalities whose lives have inspired you? Can you name them?Bhanubhai Patel: Yes, it is Nelson Mandela and his life which inspired me a lot. Nelson Mandela who spent 27 years in high security prisons on Robin island and after releasing from the prison he became the president of South Africa.
Akhila Saroha: If you were to describe your book in a few words without giving any spoilers, what would those words be?
Bhanubhai Patel: It is a purely motivational and inspirational book narrating my prison experience and my educational journey to world record in education in Indian prison and how I accomplished this gigantic task in a very disturbing, adverse, indifferent closed atmosphere of the prison which is not suitable for education at all and without enough resources at an age of 50 to 57. (7 Years)
Akhila Saroha: Are you currently pursuing any course? If yes, which one is it?
Bhanubhai Patel: At present I am pursuing two educational courses (1) Bachelor in Library and Information Science (BLIS) from Indira Gandhi National Open University and (2) Post Graduate Diploma In Human Rights from Indian Institute of Human Rights, New Delhi.
Akhila Saroha: Thank you very much for sparing your time. I look forward to reading more books by you in the future. All the best.
Bhanubhai Patel: Thank you very much and wish you a very happy reading!!