The plot of Canadian Visitor covers three countries: India, England and Canada. The author, Prakash Bansod, has lived for extensive periods of time in each of these countries. He is familiar with the geography and cultural nuances of each country. He lived in India until the age of 17 before going to England to pursue further studies. Whilst in India, he had no exposure to television but his imagination was fired up by his grandmother and his surgeon father’s story telling. These tales came from India’s rich mythology to the modern era.
He is a professional engineer and has worked in the aerospace industries of England and Canada for 25 years. In 1994, he started an Information Technology and Engineering Business, MITE Inc, in Mississauga, Ontario. Many of the technical concepts used in this novel, such as the use of supercomputers to create teaching avatars for challenged learners, stemmed from his work experience.
     He has also supported the professional development of newcomers to Canada. Since 2004, he has been a mentor for over 30 mentees from all over the world, for the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Consortium (TRIEC).
He is the father of two adult children; one gifted and other learning challenged. Both children are employed and lead successful lives. Prakash became an advocate for the needs of special education children after a school board psychologist tried to remove him from a meeting, when he pleaded for more resources for his learning disabled son. He started volunteering for a local chapter of the Learning Disabilities Association and years later became its president.
     Since 2005, Prakash focused on developing a certification program for adult challenged learners called
Para-IT. This concerns the development of employable skills such as Business IT and Soft Skills to help intellectually challenged adults.
     Prakash’s writing debut started in 2008 as a writer of fiction in the mystery/adventure genre. However, the inspiration for Canadian Visitor took place much earlier in 1985, with the horrific bombing of the Air India jetliner off the coast of Southern Ireland. Among the hundreds that needlessly lost their lives, were the wife and two children of Prakash’s colleague at work. Other priorities, family and career, took precedence. Decades followed, before this novel could finally be written. However, he called on a much richer life experience to support his narrative. Prakash was a founding member of Mississauga’s first environment protection association. This had him involved in a variety of issues from appearing as an expert witness for an environmental assessment hearing for a garbage incinerator to giving talks to school children about Green House Gas emissions, as far back as 1987!
     In 2010, Prakash received a Civic Award of Recognition from the City of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. The citation for this award covered his work as a volunteer/community activist in environmental protection, special education, mentoring professional newcomers, and the development of tennis programs at the Meadowvale West Tennis Club.
     The above brief biography of Prakash Bansod will help the reader to understand how the novel evolved. The novel is not about terrorism, but is influenced by the inspiring story of the family survivors of the air-disaster. The exemplary behaviour of the surviving families, will remain one of Canada’s great untold stories. One of the survivors raised funds in Canada to open an eye hospital in India wherein impoverish Indians get free cataract eye operations. Another started a classical Indian dance school that is now world famous. Others just got on with their lives, some remarried and raised new families. Prakash weaved his life experience, environmental issues, special education knowledge and an interest in nuclear disarmament into the plot of this novel.
Prakash Bansod, Ph.D., P.Eng.