When author, journalist and book critic Kapil Komireddi arrived in Hyderabad on Tuesday evening to share his thoughts on his recent book release, Malevolent Republic: A Short History of the New India, it got several literary enthusiasts excited, especially since the book had a lot of criticism against the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi.
“My book chronicles all the historical happenings from the death of former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to the rise of current Prime Minister, Narendra Modi in a secular state,” he reveals, adding, “It also talks about how incidents like Emergency in 1962, sterilisation by Sanjay Gandhi, etc., under the Congress regime drew flak and prompted people to look out for alternative governments.”
Kapil says that the whole objective of writing the book is to tell people that “India is a great country and it’s time we reclaim that greatness.”
The book further throws light on how Modi destroyed Central agencies, brought about religious polarisations, strained various states’ relations with the centre and how a move like ‘Revocation of Article 370’ could also happen to any state like Telangana.
“The whole concept of ‘unity in diversity’ in our country is under the scanner, and has been raising several questions. My book explains how to counter Modi’s ideologies,” he explains.
Describing that his book also ventilates how the media in India has surrendered to Modi unlike the media to President Trump in the US, Kapil shares, “Several media entrepreneurs are apprehensive that their anti-Modi stand might end their careers.”
Not surprisingly, ever since the book was released in May this year, Kapil has been receiving plenty of backlash. “I have been getting hate e-mails, abusive phone calls, death threats and one of the panelists of my last event even told me that the Intelligence Bureau (IB) is following me,” he narrates.
But was he not anticipating such a backlash, given the fact that Modi has been re-elected for a second term? “I am not bothered about it, and did not even think about it (the backlash). I thought that there is something more important (like elections and democracy) that I need to deal with. For now, I am really not that troubled,” he says with a smile....