Vish Dhamija pens new courtroom drama 'Cold Justice'
New Delhi: London-based Vish Dhamija took to writing crime fiction eight years ago as he felt only American authors dominated this genre and now several novels later, he seems contented - not only with his decision but also that he made good of a past regret that he could not complete his law studies.
Dhamija has just come out with his new book "Cold Justice", which he says is a legal thriller and a courtroom drama.
A veteran of works of crime fiction, including "Unlawful Justice", "Bhendi Bazaar", "The Mogul", "The Heist Artist", "Doosra" and "Prisoner's Dilemma", the author says legal proceedings fascinate a lot of people, including him, and that's why they have seats in the audience to watch a courtroom trial.
"While legal thrillers are fascinating to read, for some strange reason, American authors dominate this genre. I thought of giving the genre a try eight years ago," Dhamija told PTI in an interview.
"Another reason is that I went to study law but, unfortunately, had to abandon the course in favour of other personal and professional interests at the time. Decades later, I still often wonder what would have happened if I had not done what I did. One rarely gets an opportunity to make good of a past regret, and I feel blessed I can work on legal fiction," he adds.
In his latest novel, a sitting judge is accused of first-degree homicide and taken to court for a trial.
Dhamija says his book, published by Pan Macmillan India, has an emotional side and there is some romance, in flashback, for the readers to appreciate the reason why any defence advocate would take up such a losing case despite the odds stacked against the accused.
"Although the plot has its complexities, I have done my best to keep it simple by providing the readers with only as much information as is strictly required, and not drowning them in legal jargon. They must believe what I have shown in the book can realistically happen. The book has an emotional side too, but it is not a romantic novel," he says.
According to the author, there is no particular incident that sparked the idea for the book though the premise of the story played in his mind for quite a while before he started writing it.
On whether he is planning to take the story of "Cold Justice" further, Dhamija says, it cannot be done "since the courtroom trial has ended; I cannot reveal if the accused won or lost, but it's a logical end to the story".
"The team of defence advocates can, however, move on to defend someone else in the courtroom and carry on with the series. I have no plans for that as of now, but as they say: never say never," he adds.