Midnight’s Children

Midnight’s Children

by

Salman Rushdie

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A child-hating gynecologist, Ahmed Sinai’s business partner, and fellow resident of Methwold’s Estate. Narlikar owns a hospital in Bombay, and he delivers both Saleem and Shiva. With the help of Ahmed, Narlikar endeavors to design and mass produce tetrapods, physical structures built over the sea and supported by four legs. Narlikar is obsessed with the concept of tetrapods, which make it possible for him to reclaim land from the sea, and this obsession ultimately kills him. A notorious misogynist, Narlikar becomes enraged when a group of women “perform the rite of puja” near one of his tetrapods and he attacks them, causing the structure to become unstable in the chaos, pinning him underwater and drowning him. Ironically, Narlikar’s heirs end up being a group of strong and independent women who move into his apartment and take over his business interests. Narlikar’s women ultimately buy all of the property on Methwold’s Estate and plan to demolish it and erect a skyscraper in its place, a symbol of Bombay’s modern progress.
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Dr. Narlikar Character Timeline in Midnight’s Children

The timeline below shows where the character Dr. Narlikar appears in Midnight’s Children. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Book 1: Many-headed Monsters
British Colonialism and Postcolonialism Theme Icon
Sex and Gender Theme Icon
Religion Theme Icon
...Zulfikar, he has decided to go to Bombay, where according to his close friend, Dr. Narlikar, the British are quickly exiting, and property is selling for cheap. (full context)
Book 1: Tick, Tock
British Colonialism and Postcolonialism Theme Icon
Fragments and Partitioning Theme Icon
Religion Theme Icon
...As the Muslim nation of Pakistan is born, Vanita endures “protracted, unproductive labor” at Dr. Narlikar’s hospital, and countless Indians celebrate in Bombay streets. At the same time, Punjabi Indians “wash... (full context)
British Colonialism and Postcolonialism Theme Icon
Religion Theme Icon
Ahmed rushes Amina to Dr. Narlikar’s hospital, where Vanita continues to strain with the assistance of Mary Pereira. In the commotion... (full context)
Sex and Gender Theme Icon
...one, he carries it back to the waiting room. A few seconds after midnight, Dr. Narlikar bursts into the room and tells Ahmed that he has a son, causing him to... (full context)
British Colonialism and Postcolonialism Theme Icon
...left Alice too. In an attempt to atone for her sinful secret, Mary quits Dr. Narlikar’s hospital and offers her services to Amina as an ayah, which Amina accepts. The Times... (full context)
Book 2: The Fisherman’s Pointing Finger
Identity and Nationality Theme Icon
...of the residents of Methwold’s Estate are enamored with Saleem as well (except for Dr. Narlikar, who hates children and advocates for public birth control), and they take turns “borrowing” him.... (full context)
British Colonialism and Postcolonialism Theme Icon
Fragments and Partitioning Theme Icon
Religion Theme Icon
One evening, Dr. Narlikar comes to visit Ahmed and together they drive out to the seaside. There, Narlikar pitches... (full context)
Book 2: Accident in a Washing-chest
Sex and Gender Theme Icon
Religion Theme Icon
...the women in our family,” and the Brass Monkey’s poor behavior and Ahmed’s obsession with Narlikar’s tetrapods wears her down. She develops terrible corns on her feet, and “every step is... (full context)
Book 2: All-India Radio
Sex and Gender Theme Icon
...name off of the books this time, in order to protect his assets; however, when Narlikar dies unexpectedly, there is no record of Ahmed’s contribution. (full context)
Sex and Gender Theme Icon
Religion Theme Icon
According to the rumor, while out visiting friends, Narlikar decided to walk down by the sea where the city had arranged for one tetrapod... (full context)
Sex and Gender Theme Icon
...after his death, a steady stream of female heirs arrives on Methwold’s Estate to manage Narlikar’s affairs. Narlikar, who hated women and children, is surrounded in death by strong women who... (full context)
Book 2: My Tenth Birthday
Truth and Storytelling Theme Icon
Fragments and Partitioning Theme Icon
Meanwhile, in the weeks following Dr. Narlikar’s death, Ahmed sinks deeper into alcoholism and seclusion. He stops coming to the table for... (full context)