Book Review: Emergency Retold by Kuldip Nayar


I remember asking my mother if she remembered the Emergency in the 70’s and she told me, “Yes, a lot of people went to jail; but corruption went away. Trains, buses used to be on time.” That and the undeniable fact that Indira Gandhi had induced the Emergency to satiate her hunger for power, had been my narrow viewpoint on the Emergency. I came across Nayar’s book and picked it up, wanting to know what had really happened.

I loved Nayar’s ‘Emergency Retold’. Except for certain parts where Nayar lends voice to lengthy diatribes by leaders against the Emergency, the narrative is taut and thriller-like. If you think the Congress leaders of today are sycophantic (towards that magnificent buffoon Rahul Gandhi), you must read Emergency Retold to understand where the seeds of this sycophancy were sown. The Indira/ Sanjay combine killed the spirit of the Congress to such an extent that sycophancy became the norm as opposed to the exception.

A fantastic record of Indira’s India in the 70’s.

Title: Emergency Retold
Author: Kuldip Nayar
Publisher/ ImprintKonark Books
Pages: 320
Genre: Non-Fiction/History
Rating: 4.50 of 5
Reviewed for: Personal Copy

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