Muhammad Kamran Rifat
I am a graduate from Kingston University in Creative Writing with more than eight years experience of writing articles and short stories. My articles were published in the leading English Newspapers of Pakistan 'The Nation' and 'The Post'.
My novel, In Quest, gives an account of the protagonist, Arsal Haider's experiences in a foreign land, his observations and the hardships he faced. The story takes a turn when he falls for a British girl, Harriet, and discovers she is an atheist. He questions her and in turn she asks him questions which lead him to realise that he is just Muslim by name and knows nothing about his religion Islam. Arsal then goes to Lahore on the mission of self discovery and to know about the religion. There he faces opposition from his parents and the mullahs. But with little difficulty he finds a religious teacher who explains him the unknown aspects of Islam. This journey changes his life, perception and ideology.
As someone who has been made to question his identity I feel that through the protagonist, I am able to share the unique experiences of self discovery that are familiar yet alien to the millions living outside the comfort of their home countries. I hope this novel will window into the rich philosophy of Sufism and the lives of the seldom discussed affluent Pakistanis.