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bal shiv sena

The name Bal Thackeray has always been a subject of intense curiosity all over India as he raised many questions in the inquisitive minds.  To name a few, how did a quiet unassuming cartoonist at one of Indias leading newspapers transform into the fire breathing chief of a militant political outfit, how did his essentially sons of the soil movement take Mumbai by storm in the 1960s with its demands for the Marathi peoples employment rights and attacks on South Indians and the Communists, how did he make the shift from an aggressive Maharashtrianism to strident Hindutva to become one of the major players in Indian politics, what explains his control over Indias financial capital, his capture of power in India's industrial powerhouse, Maharashtra, and his ability to win over the minds of millions and to strike fear in so many hearts, how did he and his Shiv Sena establish sway over the multi-crore film industry with its longstanding alliance with the BJP.  The list is long.  This book may calm your level of inquisitiveness to a certain extent.

This book tells the complete story of Bal Thackeray and the rise, fall and split of the Shiv Sena.  It examines Thackeray the person and his intriguing political personality, his partys militaristic methods of operation, its controversial role at major junctures, the fight between Thackerays nephew Raj and son Uddhav, the end of an era in Maharashtra politics after his death in November 2012 and the future of the Shiv Sena without his imposing presence.  A must read for an understanding of contemporary Indian politics and the rise of the Hindu nationalist phenomenon.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Vaibhav Purandare grew up in Mumbai in the 1980s and 90s, the tumultuous decades in which Bal Thackeray and his Shiv Sena went from being regional political players to champions of a militant Hindutva that carried their rhetoric and rage across India.  He began his journalistic career with the political newsmagazine Blitz in 1993, in the early part of which Thackeray and his organisation played a key role in the Mumbai riots, and has since worked with Indias leading newspapers such as The Indian Express, The Asian Age, Daily News and Analysis, Mid Day and Mumbai Mirror.  Apart from writing for a host of other publications, his first book, The Sena Story was published in 1999, when he was only 23.  His second book, Sachin Tendulkar: A Definitive Biography is now into its fifth edition.  He is currently Senior Associate Editor with the Hindustan Times, Mumbai.

MY TAKE:  I confess, I was also the part of the group that had many questions in mind about this firebrand politician.  I appreciate the effort of the writer to cover the topic of such a controversial leader in the best possible way.  The incidents are covered with apt sincerity as to maintain the interest of the reader and give a concise view.  Those with a political tilt will find it an interesting pick.



AUTHOR:  Vaibhav Purandare.

PUBLISHER:  Roli Books.

LANGUAGE:  English.

NUMBER OF PAGES:  288 Pages.

PRICE:  Rs. 350.

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