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Synopsis

The Great India Story by a respected international journalist Since independence in 1947, India has muddled through, turning confusion and adversity into varying degrees of success. From his experience and perspective as both a business and political correspondent, John Elliott examines how this came to be. At a time when there is a widespread clamour for change and for a new form of politics, he looks at how corruption has eaten into all aspects of Indian life and questions the decades of rule by the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty, and suggests democracy provides a smokescreen for much that is wrong. He explores the impact of liberalization, traces the build-up of social unrest over corruption, women's rights, and the exploitation of land and the poor. He also reflects on the limitations of a hesitant foreign policy and looks in detail at why India's defence forces are so depleted. At the heart of the problem, he argues, is the 'quick fix' attitude known as 'jugaad' and the laissez faire acceptance of 'chalta hai' that together have eaten into the social and political fabric and heavily influence what India is, and is not, today. He uncovers a secrets 'M document' that mapped out the 1991 reforms, and reveals how was an unwitting spectator at a Pakistan briefing meeting for the 1991 Kargil war. Incisive and ambitious in its attempt to gather together the many strands that make up a controversial India narrative, Implosion is a timely contribution to the debate on nationhood,development, the exercise of power, people's rights and the changing demographics of a country facing a Tryst with Reality.

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