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An Evening With Mohammed Hanif, Author of A Case of Exploding Mangoes

There is an ancient saying that when lovers fall out, a plane goes down. A Case of Exploding Mangoes is the story of one such plane. Why did a Hercules C130, the world’s sturdiest plane, carrying Pakistan’s military dictator General Zia ul Haq, go down on 17 August, 1988?

Teasing, provocative, and very funny, Mohammed Hanif’s debut novel takes one of the subcontinent’s enduring mysteries and out of it, spins a tale as rich and colourful as a beggar’s dream.

explodingmangoes.jpg According to Mohsin Hamid, A Case of Exploding Mangoes, is “one of the most important Pakistani novels of recent times, unputdownable and darkly hilarious. Mohammed Hanif is a brave, gifted writer. He has taken territory in desperate need of satire – General Zia, the military, Pakistan at the time of the Soviet-Afghan war – and made it undeniably his own.”

Mohammed Hanif was born in Okara, Pakistan. He graduated from the Pakistan Air Force Academy as a Pilot Officer but subsequently left to pursue a career in journalism. He has worked for Newsline, India Today and The Washington Post. He has written plays for the stage and the critically acclaimed BBC drama, What Now, Now That We Are Dead? His feature film, The Long Night has been shown at film festivals around the world. He is a graduate of University of East Anglia’s creative writing programme. Mohammad Hanif is currently head of BBC’s Urdu Service and lives in London.

Date: Sunday 22nd June, 2008

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