The modern novel form developed in India in the 19th century, as Indians became familiar with the Western novel. The development of the vernaculars, print, cheap price compared to handwritten books, a reading public helped novels to be popular.
Indian novelists wrote to develop a modern literature that could produce a sense of national belonging and cultural equality with their colonial master.
Novels encouraged reading alone and in silence. Reading a novel was like day dreaming.
Novel became a powerful medium to criticise the defects of society and suggest the remedies.