In thinking of Anand as a "Modernist" writer, I found it odd that his work was rejected 16 times before being published. Compared to the other writers of this period, why was his work less popular? On the one hand, he was a highly-educated, high-caste Indian. On the other, he was committed to Marxism and international socialism. He advocated Indian independence, but did so in London, the center of imperial power.
In an essay entitled, Mulk Raj Anand's Passage through Bloomsbury, critic Kristen Bluemel suggests:
"...the gap between the reception in leftist circles of Anand's radical fiction and his radical nonfiction suggests that Anand’s diminishing reputation among leftists had less to do with any failures of the literary imagination, and more to do with many English leftists' allegiance to England's imperial identity and specifically its right to rule India..."
She goes on to say:
"...While it is true that Anand was influenced by many of the same intellectual and political texts that other modernists and intermodernists read, his 1930s fictions struck most readers of the time as radically different for the following reasons: they are exclusively about India and Indians, are the first examples of Indo-Anglian fiction to adopt outcastes or social pariahs as their heroes, they use English in a new way to communicate Indian idiom, and they integrate the political speeches of the period’s most prominent Indian political figures, Gandhi and Nehru. More generally, Anand's fiction is regarded as a cornerstone of the first generation of Indo-Anglian writers who came to represent independent and postcolonial India..."
You can check out the full article below --- definitely worth a read.