Booker Prize winner Arundhati Roy compared today's India like a reverse plane which is headed towards crash.
She was speaking on Wednesday at the launch of the book "Why do you fear my way so much?", a selection of poems and letters by jailed human rights activist GN Saibaba.
The author of bestselling novels 'The God of Small Things' and 'The Ministry of Utmost Happiness' said that from spearheading "truly revolutionary movements" in the 1960s for redistribution of wealth and land, the country's leaders were now seeking votes and winning elections by distributing "5 kg rice and 1 kg salt".
"Recently, I asked a pilot friend of mine, 'Can you fly a plane backwards?' He laughed out loud. I said "this is exactly what is happening here".
"The leaders of this country are flying the plane in reverse, everything is falling, and we are headed for a crash," Roy said.
The author described India as a land of "sophisticated jurisprudence", but the one where laws are applied differently depending on your "caste, class, gender and ethnicity".