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Mumbai cop's debut thriller narrates other side of story
Friday June 20, 2014 2:30 PM, IANS

A policeman's life is extremely difficult and misunderstood, says a senior Mumbai police officer whose debut novel is an action-packed thriller about looming threats, unseen challenges and unpredictable lifestyles of "men at work" whose life, he laments is widely "misunderstood".

For someone who has been "always on duty" and pressed against "deadlines", taking out time to write "Quantum Siege" (Blue Salt, Rs. 250) came pretty easily. As Additional Commissioner of Police (North) Brijesh Singh puts it, "once I started writing the story, it took off on its own".

With erratic schedules that leave very little room for personal chores, Brijesh Singh set aside a three-hour slot from midnight to 3 a.m for three months to complete this 243-page saga where a terror group has threatened the Indian prime minister with "never before" consequences if a referendum is not immediately announced in Kashmir.

"All I can say is that most of the situations in my novel are quite realistic. There have been certain terror groups that are a threat to the country," Brijesh Singh told IANS over the phone from Mumbai.

"This book also brings to light the other side of the cops that is not known to people. People never understand the kind of pressure we always work under and the many things we have to deal with when something major happens," the 1996 batch IPS officer added.

And this is why the book speaks about cops joking around during tense situations. These "funny" situations might not seem realistic to readers but Brijesh Singh is quick to counter this.

"People might find these situations funny, but we have seen it all and face such tense moments everyday. So this doesn't make us unsympathetic or conniving, but when this is a part of your job, you too find your light situations in those tense moments," he explained.

Asked how much his protagonist, Rudra Pratap Singh, resembled him in real life, Brijesh Singh admitted: "There are many common shades".

While his love for writing has begun to blossom further with a second novel in mind, Brijesh Singh hopes his debut thriller can change the "biased perceptions" of people towards police officers.

"We are extremely misunderstood," he said.

"There is lack of empathy and people don't know what a cop actually goes through. So, I hope people don't see us as only black and white - there is a large grey area that exists in between," Brijesh Singh concluded.

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