I started reading Narendra Modi: The Man, The Times by Nilanjan Mukhopadhyay when he became the Prime Minister of India. By that time I have seen many documentaries and short film on Narendra Modi telecast on all the news channels of India. Obviously, when I began reading his unofficial biography by Nilanjan Mukhopadhyay, I did not find anything new to read. It was like I have heard all those things on one or other news channel.
Anyways, I think the author has also realized the same thing while writing Narendra Modi’s biography. So what he has done is that apart from writing about Narendra Modi: The Man he has also included the political history of India specially Gujarat politics during the same time frame which runs parallel with the Modi’s story. Someone who likes to know about the political history will find this fusion interesting but I find it very rambling and just a means of the author to add some more pages to the book and clear deviation from the main topic.
The author has also written in detail how he has collected all the information for this book and his personal experience of interviewing Modi for the biography. According to author, Modi spoke lively about his childhood days, time with Sangh and RSS but he becomes difficultly silent when he is asked to discuss about his marriage issue and Godhra riots.
The book really lacks author’s own personal in depth analysis of Modi and never seems to be interested in going deep into the skin of Modi to understand him better. He wrote what was already known. Modi has a very complex personality. He is not a religious person as such but a spiritual person. He has respect for every religion but doesn’t necessarily follows a policy of appeasement. He might have high respect for women but he never acknowledged her wife in his life. Why he is so. There are many such questions for which an intensive study about the character of Modi is very essential to understand him better.
The author is not seemingly an admirer of Narendra Modi even in the remotest way. Then why he choose to write a biography on him certainly to vent out his anger or to capitalize on the unpopularity of Modi.. A chunk part of the book is about Godhra Riots and about discrimination towards Muslims in Gujarat and I can’t make any sense out of it. This is an uneasy part of Modi’s side which he can’t deviate but there is also another side of the coin which is about growth and progress, peace and security.
This biography of Narendra Modi is no more valid as Narendra Modi and BJP has got the full mandate from every religion people in India. It might give some solace to congress supporters.
Well I certainly did not enjoy reading the book but I prefer reading the books citing about Gujarat progress under Narendra Modi leadership like Centrestage : Inside the Narendra Modi Model of Governance by Uday Mahurkar and Modi : Leadership, Governance and Performance by Vivian Fernandes