Book Review: Your Prime Minister is dead by Anuj Dhar

Anuj Dhar has perfectly presented well-researched facts offering seemingly convincing explanations for the lacunae cited by the lawmakers

Book Review: Your Prime Minister is dead
Book Review: Your Prime Minister is dead

The book “Your Prime Minister is dead” by Anuj Dhar puts together the first-ever comprehensive study of the enduring Shastri death mystery.

If there’s anything such as an angel of death he was quietly lurking somewhere in a corner in Tashkent that fateful night as Lal Bahadur Shastri retired after an eventful day of signing up the Indo Pak Tashkent pact.

Anuj Dhar has perfectly presented well-researched facts offering seemingly convincing explanations for the lacunae cited by the lawmakers.

The Tashkent agreement between India and Pakistan was signed around 4 pm in full glare of officials and media, history was made as both leaders shook hands.  Never did anyone anticipate that to be the last handshake of the loved PM as India and the world woke up next day to hear the sudden demise of the Prime Minister who seemed pink in health the previous evening walking around at ease as he met many foreign delegates.

All instances of unexpected deaths are shrouded in disbelief. In case of Lal Bahadur Shastri, it was all the more because he had died far away from home. The first sign of controversy was spoken immediately after his obituary was read in the parliament. Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the first leader to lament the demise followed by many tall leaders.

Rumble in Rajya Sabha was followed by Lalita Shastri’s interview that appeared in the then iconic Hindi weekly Dharmyug.

When Lalita Shastri saw her husband’s body it didn’t appear normal to her. His face was dark bluish. The body was bloated. It bore signs of cuts and clothes were soaked in blood. As the family members raised doubts suddenly from nowhere sandalwood paste was brought in and was smeared on Shastriji’s face.

The book “Your Prime Minister is dead” by Anuj Dhar puts together the first-ever comprehensive study of the enduring Shastri death mystery.

Taking the readers through the discussions, observations, prejudices, contemplation s and finally revelations of an unsolved mystery that shrouded the demise Hari Shastri, the son of Lal Bahadur Shastri told the media that the family suspected foul play from the very outset, but when he conveyed his suspicions he was silenced by the government officials. He also underlined another suspicious aspect as his father’s personal diary and the flask from which he had water before he died had gone missing.

Anuj Dhar has perfectly presented well-researched facts offering seemingly convincing explanations for the lacunae cited by the lawmakers. He has even pointed out the intricate details of the medication administered.

The readers agree with Anuj Dhar as he opines that he too like many sincerely want to believe that Shastriji died a natural death, but available information compels him to draw a conclusion to the contrary

For instance, The medical report in Russian stated that the mixture injected into Shastri’s body by the anti-shock group of doctors was of calcium chlorine, adrenaline and glucose.  While the translation of the report in English stated that to be a concoction of potassium chloride, adrenaline and glucose. The difference in the two reports obviously was due to the mistake in the translation as the Russian words for calcium and potassium are very similar.

They are Kali for potassium and Kai tsi for calcium. Thus washing away the questions raised it was stated that by no reasoning can the discrepancy be construed as creating a suspicion.

The author has included all the clarifications that were issued by the government proving it to be a natural death. Dhar says that he was propelled to revisit the facts as there was a constant nagging that disturbed him, the author filed first ever RTI application regarding the demise with the PMO. He did get a reply only to find his questions being transferred to different departments without giving convincing evidence or explanation.

PMO also replied to Anuj as they stated that under section 8(1) (a) of RTI act government was not obliged to part with information whose disclosure could prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India

Not very pleased the author persisted with his quest and has chalked out for the readers a detailed analysis of the death mystery. Though it happened so many years ago, the Shastriji’s death controversy deserves to be pursued with the same vigour as seen in cases involving people who were nowhere close to Shastri ‘s in stature.

The readers agree with Anuj Dhar as he opines that he too like many sincerely want to believe that Shastriji died a natural death, but available information compels him to draw a conclusion to the contrary. Nightmarish scenarios starts rolling in reader’s mind as they read the book.

The book sheds light on the mystery, covering almost all angles thoroughly researched. He concludes with – “Countless are still restless.”

Note:
1. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.

Jayabala Girish

Jayabala Girish

worked as a lecturer for two decades in a Junior college and is now currently working as Content manager at School of vocational education, Tata institute of social sciences, Mumbai.
Jayabala Girish

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Has Anuj Dhar also covered the so called accidental death of Dr and Mrs Chugh . Dr Chugh was the personal Physician who had accompanied Shastriji to Tashkent and would have known a lot of things. He was silenced for ever, a fact that raises a lot of suspicion.

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