The Crossword bookstore at Kemps Corner was packed, as Fatima Bhutto, granddaughter of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, launched her first book— Songs of Blood and Sword— a first-hand account of the family’s history. The event began with Fatima reading out the first few passages from her book, describing the fear the family experienced while shots rang outside their Karachi home. As hands went up, with the guests asking her ‘political’ questions, Fatima didn’t flinch.
The author, who had always disagreed with her aunt Benazir’s ruling, re-emphasised her feelings, when she mentioned that Benazir had done nothing for the women of Pakistan. Just when you thought this was yet another ‘intellectual’ gathering, someone threw a fun question at her.
Had she ever met Rahul Gandhi? “No,” she laughed. “It’s not like there’s a club where we all hang out on Tuesdays!” She also deflected questions about the Sania Mirza- ShoaibMalik controversy.
When asked by a reporter who she held responsible for the bombings that keep happening in Pakistan, she replied curtly, “I’m not going to answer such ridiculous questions”, before excusing herself. Prahlad Kakkar and Madhoo were seen sitting right across her, engaged in deep conversation about her book.
Dolly Thakore was seen at the launch too. Gregory David Roberts walked in later, in biker boots and carrying a shiny silver helmet. Many actually went and bought his book, Shantaram, to get them autographed. Roberts obliged one and all.