By Shubhangi Shah
The Shortest History of India by John Zubrzycki
True to its title, The Shortest History of India by author John Zubrzycki is a retelling of five millennia of known Indian history condensed into 300 pages. The story begins with the accidental discovery of the Indus Valley Civilisation all the way to the present age. From the rise of the Vedic age to that of PM Narendra Modi-led BJP, from the great emancipation led by Gautam Buddha to that by Dr BR Ambedkar, and from the several invasions, starting roughly with the Kushanas all the way to the British, the book captures every event, personality, and nuance that have shaped India’s destiny for the better or worse. Not just that, every individual chapter has been connected to modern times through the latest discoveries, writing, etc, which makes for a fresh read of a tale that has already been told several times.
Journey of a Nation: 75 Years of Indian Economy by Sanjaya Baru
Addressed to the young Indians, those who will live through most of the 21st century, this book is largely set in the 20th century, in its latter half to be precise, undoubtedly an extraordinary time in India’s history. After a brief account of India’s pauperisation at the hands of the British, the writer delves right into the ideologies, occurrences, and situations that shaped India’s post-independence economy. There have been reforms and hiccups too. However, it is safe to say that every crisis, progress, and experiment has something to offer to the youngsters in India, some of whom might be the economic policymakers of the future.
Journey of a Nation: 75 Years of Indian Foreign Policy by Madhav Das Nalapat
If the 2020 Covid pandemic, the 2021 Taliban takeover of Afghanistan, and the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine have taught the world anything, it is that an event in one country is never restricted there and has worldwide repercussions. Also, a closer look often reveals that events that disrupt the world order are often a result of interplay and relationships between nations. And here is where astute foreign policy and diplomacy play a role. Giving a deep insight into all the hits and misses of India’s foreign policy over the past 75 years is Madhav Das Nalapat’s Journey of a Nation: 75 Years of Indian Foreign Policy.
Anchoring Change Edited by Vikram Singh Mehta, Neelima Khetan and Jayapadma RV
At the stroke of the midnight hour 75 years ago, India made a ‘tryst with destiny’. Seventy five years later, although the country has progressed, several promises and aspirations remain unfulfilled. While a lack of development at the grassroots level across several pockets in India is often cited, there have been several successful interventions at the grassroots that have brought considerable change in the lives of the common populace. And 24 such interventions through these 75 years, concerning fields as diverse as agriculture and cerebral palsy, have been compiled into ‘75 Years of Grassroots Interventions That Made a Difference’.
Journey of a Nation: 75 Years of Indian Sports — Game, Guts, Glory by Chandresh Narayanan
Nothing can quite unite a diverse, and at times divisive, India as sports achievements do. And with India clocking its 75 years of independence, compounded by recent sporting achievements such as at the Commonwealth Games and Thomas Cup, Chandresh Narayanan’s Journey of a Nation: 75 Years of Indian Sports – Game, Guts, Glory – Game, Guts, Glory seems to be a timely read. True to the title and the nationalist sentiment that it carries, the book is a look back at India’s sporting achievements and moments that are etched in the country’s collective memory forever. Not just that, it also chronicles the journey of players from amateurs to champions.