Friday, January 18, 2013

NEW BOOK - Reader-friendly, journalistic view of modern Indian history

An excellent book - OK I'm just a little bit prejudiced because it's written by my father! :) But it really is a wonderful book, very readable, very interesting, kind of a personal view of Indian history from the partition of the country into India and Pakistan (1946) until the assassination of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi (1984).

- By Som Nath Dhar
published by Harper Collins India
ISBN: 9789350293775

Available in India through the flipkart and stackkart online stores; and will be in Indian bookstore very soon. Available in Singapore through me! Email me:



An engrossing, personal view of the public events that have shaped India's recent history 

From Partition to Operation Bluestar provides an engrossing, personal view of the public events that have shaped India's recent history, written by a man who had a ringside view of these.

As we follow Som Nath Dhar's career in journalism, government and the world of covert intelligence, the book transports us from pre-Partition Punjab to Delhi and Kashmir, with side trips to East Africa and Europe.

Dhar writes in a compelling, journalistic style about the turbulence of Partition; the heady experience of working closely with India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru; the dramatic events leading up to the 1947 invasion and accession of Kashmir; and later developments such as Indira Gandhi's accession to power, her fall from grace and eventual return to power, and much else.

Full of charming anecdotes, the book deepens our understanding of recent Indian history and provides insights into the character of many of the personalities who shaped it.


Som Nath Dhar started his career as a journalist in Lahore in 1946. He moved to Delhi in 1947 and was part of Jawaharlal Nehru's staff for a few months, after which he returned to journalism, this time as a radio reporter. He went on to work in the government's Central Information Service (now called the Indian Information Service), and later as a diplomat and as an intelligence officer. He ended his career in government as director of news, All India Radio. After retirement, he taught for five years as head of department at the Indian Institute of Mass Communication.